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havema1
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VMware Tools does not install in Mac OS X Server v10.6.8

I have an old Mac OS X Server v10.6.8 VMware Fusion VM with VMware Tools working OK.

Now with VMware Fusion 13.0.2 I tried to create a new Mac OS X Server v10.6.8 VM but the VMware Tools refuse to install. The "Install VMware Tools" image mounts, but the installer seems to crash without any error message (the same thing happens with the old OS X 10.6.8 VM where the tools installed OK in the past). So I am stuck with only 1024 x 768 display and no usual integration to macOS.

Is there an old OS X 10.6 compatible VMware Tools that can be patched to VMware Fusion 13?

(Setup: macOS 13.5.1, Mac mini 2018, VMware Fusion 13.0.2).

regards,

- Matti

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Technogeezer
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Just FYI - VMware has deprecated support for macOS so don't expect any tools updates or patches from them.

My thoughts are one of two things are going on:

  • I know Fusion 13 has issues with selecting the right VMware Tools package when installing them from "Install VMware Tools" in the Fusion GUI. It's happened for Windows 7 and I suspect the same thing is happening here - if you look you probably are seeing "darwin.iso" mounted to the virtual CD/CVD drive when you try to install Tools. That's the wrong version for SL Server (and anything before macOS 10.11 El Capitan). However, Fusion 13 does ship with the correct tools version. Keep reading.
  • You might be dealing with expired certificates.

I was able to get tools installed in a Snow Leopard server VM I just created. Some helpful hints.

  • On the host Mac, find the VMware Fusion.app file in /Applications with the Finder, right click on it, and select "Show Package Contents".
  • In the Finder window, drill down into the Contents folder, open the is-omages folder found within that, and then open the x86_x64 folder found within that. Locate a file called darwinPre15.iso, and make a copy of it to your desktop. That's the "old" version of tools that will install on SL server.
  • Install SL Server, and then set the clock back to 2020.
  • Install all available Apple updates.
  • Set the virtual CD/DVD to point to the darwinPre15.iso you have on your desktop. Connect the virtual CD to the VM.
  • The VMware Tools installer ISO should be mounted in the VM. Install the tools.
  • Once done, set the clock back to today's date  (if it hasn't been done already for you by VMware Tools).

 

- Paul (Technogeezer)
Editor of the Unofficial Fusion Companion Guides

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RDPetruska
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1. Have you specified the correct guestOS version?  I know there are 2 different mac Tools installers - one modern and one for older versions.

2. If you already have a working 10.6.8 guest VM, why are you trying to rebuild another one?  Also, if things are working fine in that, it's usually best to not upgrade the virtual hardware or VMware Tools in it.

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havema1
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I created the VM from the 64-bit OS X 10.6 Server preset.

I tried to set an earlier date by removing Ethernet from the VM (so the clock stays in the past) and turn the clock to 2008 but that did not help. ...hmm maybe I must set the "real" Mac's clock also to 2008?

A quick 'n dirty fix was to grab from VMware Fusion 4.app installer > Contents > Library > isoimages > darwin.iso and put it in VMware Fusion 13.0.2.app > x86_x64 > darwin.iso (I renamed the existing as darwin_new.iso). After that VMware Tools installed OK in OS X 10.6 and the display could be set to 1920x1080 and the Sharing worked. But drag and drop to the VM did not work.

I peeked at VMware Fusion 3.1.3 but could not find darwin.iso from its installer.

Maybe there is a more compatible darwin.iso somewhere?

...yes, I already have a working copy of OS X 10.6.8 but I am trying to help a fellow user with a clean install...

 

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Technogeezer
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Just FYI - VMware has deprecated support for macOS so don't expect any tools updates or patches from them.

My thoughts are one of two things are going on:

  • I know Fusion 13 has issues with selecting the right VMware Tools package when installing them from "Install VMware Tools" in the Fusion GUI. It's happened for Windows 7 and I suspect the same thing is happening here - if you look you probably are seeing "darwin.iso" mounted to the virtual CD/CVD drive when you try to install Tools. That's the wrong version for SL Server (and anything before macOS 10.11 El Capitan). However, Fusion 13 does ship with the correct tools version. Keep reading.
  • You might be dealing with expired certificates.

I was able to get tools installed in a Snow Leopard server VM I just created. Some helpful hints.

  • On the host Mac, find the VMware Fusion.app file in /Applications with the Finder, right click on it, and select "Show Package Contents".
  • In the Finder window, drill down into the Contents folder, open the is-omages folder found within that, and then open the x86_x64 folder found within that. Locate a file called darwinPre15.iso, and make a copy of it to your desktop. That's the "old" version of tools that will install on SL server.
  • Install SL Server, and then set the clock back to 2020.
  • Install all available Apple updates.
  • Set the virtual CD/DVD to point to the darwinPre15.iso you have on your desktop. Connect the virtual CD to the VM.
  • The VMware Tools installer ISO should be mounted in the VM. Install the tools.
  • Once done, set the clock back to today's date  (if it hasn't been done already for you by VMware Tools).

 

- Paul (Technogeezer)
Editor of the Unofficial Fusion Companion Guides
havema1
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Thanks! That did it.

VMware Tools install works (display settings, Sharing). But as in my old OS X 10.6.8 VM drag and drop from/to the Mac does not work. I guess it never did?

...at one point I did try to use that darwinPre15.iso. But I presumed VMware had set its certificates OK in this new version and did not turn the VM clock back, so the VMware Tools failed with an obscure error.

- Matti

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ColoradoMarmot
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It's been a long time, but I believe that's correct.

The tools have been depreciated, so what's there is what's there.  I'd suggest making a backup copy of that VM somewhere just in case.

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ccprstuff
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An old thread - but wanted to drop in and and say Thanks!

I had been banging my head against walls for more than a year looking for a solution to install VMWare tools into Snow Leopard server VM guest, and your directions solved the problem nicely.

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havema1
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Yes, the latest VMware Fusion 13.0.2 incorrectly a) chooses too-new VMware Tools and b) the certificate for the old tools has expired March 30 2022.

With the workflow above VMware Tools install works (display settings, Sharing) but (as always?) drag and drop from VM to the Mac does not work (from Mac to VM it works).

VMware Fusion 13 is free for personal use so I am not complaining but instead praise its user community for great support.

BTW Apple's update servers for OS X 10.6.3 Server are still working so it can be updated to 10.6.8. Also Rosetta (to run old PowerPC applications) can be installed by just choosing if open using Rosetta is ticked in the app's Finder Get Info. Rosetta can also be installed from the Mac OS X 10.6.3 installer extras, and AFAIR it is selected by default in the server version that is allowed to virtualize (Mac OS X Server v10.6.3 rev 1 Snow Leopard Unlimited Clients MC588Z/A).

ccprstuff
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Thanks again. The Rosetta info was new to me. Cheers!

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