snobis
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

VMware Fusion 4 very unstable

I used Fusion 3 for quite a long time. After upgrading to version 4 (currently running 4.0.1 on Mac OS X 10.6.8) Fusion runs very unstable. After a fresh reboot, the first start of a VM usually works without problems (Guest are WinXP and Win7). But after the shutdown of this first VM, every start thereafter is a game of luck. Sometimes I'm able to start and shutdown a VM multiple times (with and without sending the Mac to sleep inbetween). Sometimes even the second start of a VM hangs.

The problem is, that sometimes Fusion won't start a VM. It shows the VM windows with the play button. The button will be grayed after clicking on it but the VM will not boot (no BIOS or any other sign of activity). After a bit of waiting an error message pops up (in most cases something like "... cannot connect to peer..."). When I quit Fusion, the icon vanishes from the dock, but Activity Monitor says, its still running (processes named "vmware-vmx", "Open VMware Fusion Services", and "kextunload"). I'm unable to kill anyone of these (not even via commandline kill -9 as root). What's even more anoying: Mac OS won't shutdown cleanly, anymore. The only way to get rid of VMware processes and to get it up and running again is to cut the computer from power (holding the power button more than 5 seconds).

So my question is: Are there any ways to analyse what's going on there? Any ideas to make Fusion behave more friendly and stable?

Tags (2)
0 Kudos
11 Replies
tksleeper
Contributor
Contributor

I don't have an answer  to the problem.  I can only state that I am experiancing the same thing.  I don't get an error pop up though and am able to use the Activity Monitor to kill it then reboot to get the VM running. 

It's annoying and I would love to give folks any logs they need to correct this.

Kelly

0 Kudos
snobis
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

After contacting the support and some tests I found a cause for the trouble: VMs residing on external drives. I have a MacBook Pro. If I copy a VM to the internal harddrive and only use this VM from the internal drive without attaching an external drive with other VMs on it, Fusion runs stable for me (at least about a six days in a row). No problems when trying to start a VM, no hanging processes. But as soon as I attach an external drive and start a VM residing on the external drive, Fusion behaves mysteriouly. The problem has been acknowledged by the development team and they hope to resolve it in a future version.

So far the conclusion for me: Don't use Fusion4 with external drives.

0 Kudos
jasperx20111014
Contributor
Contributor

I recently upgraded to Fusion 4 and started having problems.  My Mac would not wake after sleep and a hard shutdown using the power button had to be used.  I started being really  careful to shut down my virtual machine (Win7 located in Boot Camp) when leaving for more than a few minutes.  Now when I try to  restart VM I get a message that the Virtual Maching is not able to reserve memory and I get in an unending cancel loop.  Force quitting VM got me out and when I restarted VM it showed entirely different screens and has spent the last 15 minuts " preparing your Boot Camp partition to run as a virtual machine".  I am going to force quit this, reboot the Mac  and see if that works.

I am running Fusion on OS 10.7.2 on an i7 2.2GHz machine with 8 GB of ram.   Things were much better before the upgrade.

0 Kudos
jasperx20111014
Contributor
Contributor

Just did the shut down and got a full blown kernel panic that required power button shutdown.  This is not fun.

0 Kudos
dariusd
Leadership
Leadership

Hi jasperx201110141,

I'd really like to see the resulting panic log if at all possible.  Your system should have generated a panic report at next startup and placed a copy in /Library/Logs/DiagnosticReports/ on your Mac's boot volume in a file with a name starting with Kernel -- if you could possibly find that file and attach it to a reply, that'd be very helpful... it might give us some insight into what happened.

Cheers,

--

Darius

0 Kudos
ChrisABass
Contributor
Contributor

I had a Kernel Panic caused by fusion on the 23rd here is my log:

0 Kudos
dariusd
Leadership
Leadership

Hi ChrisABass,

Thanks for the panic report.  We have previously seen very similar crashes on MacBookPro5,x systems with 3rd-party memory upgrades, however it looks like you are using the memory that was originally installed into your MacBookPro8,2 by Apple... Can you just confirm for me that it's original Apple memory, and not an upgrade that you have had installed after purchase?

Cheers,

--

Darius

0 Kudos
ChrisABass
Contributor
Contributor

It was installed at the store so I believe it is mac ram. I looked up the manufacturer in my System Information but it just says 0x80CE.

0 Kudos
zBotro
Contributor
Contributor

I have the Apple OEM RAM. I've had nothing but problems since installing Fusion 4 on my 2010 MacBook Pro 13" running Lion and Windows 7. Slow performance to locking up the system. Instead of putting in all the new crap they should have focused on making this application more stable, with a smaller footprint and reduce the demand on system resources (this thing is a Hog I don't care what the benchmark tests indicate). I've allocated 2GB to Fusion - maybe that is too little and it needs a larger RAM segment?

I am going to try to go back to Fusion 3 which I very rarely have these problems with. Fortunatly I have a Bootcamp partition which runs Win 7 wicked fast.

One thing I've had to do is disable McAfee virus scans - they completely lock up the VM. I wonder if this is one of the primary contributors to the poor performance?

0 Kudos
gdd9000
Contributor
Contributor

Unstable here too. Hating it so far. Installation processon iMac was plain STUPID, as you get an error first off when you try to upgrade, having to install from applications. I dont know if anyone thought any of this out, but the directions for upgrading are different in different places. Anyway, FINALLY get it installed, with little help from vmware as to explaining how to make sure you are 32 bit or 64 bit version. Finally get it up and running, create a win 7 machine (another huge headache) and then poof,......running vm one minute, black screen of death the next. This has happened more than once - total lock up of vm and mac, nothing to do but power off. So, yeh, first problem is this, but second problem is even more fun.

Transfered my vm file to my macbook dual core, 64 bit lion, running vmware fusion 4, same as imac....but VM wont run properly. Screen just keeps flashing black boxes around the win 7 desktop, or any window. Functions, but unusable visually. Turned off 3d graphics, no difference. Always was able to run my xp vm straight from imac to macbook, and travel with it. Now, no can do.

Not.

Happy.

0 Kudos
LiamN
Contributor
Contributor

If I enable 3D acceleration and then use an app which uses openGL then my Macbook will suffer a kernel panic in a couple of minutes, I have to turn off the 3D acceleration to use Fusion 4 at all.

Even with 3D acceleration turned off the windows machine periodically disappears, just completely terminated, no error message or warning whatsoever from Fusion, not even any admission that the VM was running 1 second ago. Upon restart Windows knows that it crashed and does the checkdisk etc. With 3D acceleration off only get a kernel panic once a week or so with Fusion running.

This machine ran fusion 3.X for over a year with none of these problems (although VMWare did occasionally stop the machine going to sleep resulting in it being so hot when I got home and took it out of my bag that it burnt me). Fusion 4 is definitely not an upgrade, it is too unstable to use and not even beta quality, certainly not of merchantable quality and I want a refund.

I have looked in the suggested location for a kernel panic log but didn't find anything.

Where do I find the logs from Fusion to explain why it is terminating my Windows VM and losing my work?

How do I upgrade Fusion 4 to a stable version such as 3.1.X now that Fusion 4 has changed my VM file formats?

Also, please please please get rid of or provide a way to disable the awful "feature" that centers the mouse on the virtual machine window when the focus switches to fusion, some users might like it but I am not one of them and it would appear I am not alone.

0 Kudos