bertramaerts
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Workstation Pro 16.2.1 vmware-vmx full processor load periodically

My laptop runs Ubuntu 21.10 with secure boot enabled and fully up to date.
I use VMWare Workstation Pro 16.2.1 with linux as host.
I sign the VMWare vmnet kernel modules as described in https://kb.vmware.com/s/article/2146460.
I use Windows 11 as guest with VMWare encrypted disk to be able to use TPM Trusted Platform Module, needed for Windows 11.
My laptop has Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-10750H CPU @ 2.60GHz with 6 cores and 16 GB memory in total.
I allow my guest to use 6 threads out of 12 and half of the memory so 8 GB.
All three "Virtualization Engine" options in settings/Hardware/Processors are selected.
The hardware compatibility is the latest "Workstation 16.2.x virtual machine".
One use case of this guest is to use Garmin BaseCamp to browse maps.
But after a while the guest becomes unresponsive for periods of 30 seconds and then again 30 seconds all OK periodically. When looking at Ubuntu's System Monitor I can see 6 threads of the 12 using 100% load. In the processes tab, this is all consumed by the vmware-vmx process.
I already tried for the guest to reduce to 2 threads instead of 6 and increase to 10 GB instead of 8 GB which seems to improve a little bit, but when I open more apps in Windows 11 the unresponsiveness issue occurs again.
What can I do to improve?

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6 Replies
vinicole
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Hi,

I found the following comment on https://forums.garmin.com/apps-software/mac-windows-software/f/basecamp-mac/45013/basecamp-cpu-usage:

"The main reason BaseCamp would take up lots of CPU while idling is if your computer's graphics card ends up running our 3D view in software mode, i.e. rendering on the CPU instead of the GPU. We attempt to detect this and run the 3D view at a lower framerate to compensate for it, but it will still take up much more CPU than running 2D-only view on the same machine."

Can you try to run 2D-only view and see if it improves?

Regards,
Vinicole

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bertramaerts
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Hi Vinicole,
Thanks for you reply and suggestion.
But the link you provide is from an issue of 12 years ago.
The current Garmin BaseCamp 4.7.4 has View/Map Views/2D Map and 3D Map.
And if I select 2D Map the issue still occurs.
There is no global setting in BaseCamp about 3D.
VMWare Workstation Guest has "Accelerate 3D Graphics" and Graphics Memory was 1 GB.
But even with 4 GB Graphics Memory the unresponsiveness happens.
My laptop has a nVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 graphics card and according to nvtop there are 2 identical vmware processes using this graphics card: "/usr/lib/vmware/bin/mksSandbox --pipeInfo 3".
Enough about Garmin BaseCamp.
Another use case is Cadence Orcad 17.40.027 in the Windows 11 guest.
Also there I see the unresponsiveness issue.
And even when Windows 11 has started without opening any application, the unresponsiveness issue happens.
The task manager in Windows 11 is set to high update speed, but it freezes during the high processor load so that I can not see which Windows process is taking the high processor load. I only see loads of about 20% for Antimalware Service Executable and WMI Provider Host.
Kind regards
Bert

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vinicole
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Hi Bert,

Ubuntu 21.10 doesn't seem to be officially supported with Workstation Pro 16.2.1 as host OS.
I don't know whether it can be the cause of the issue but did you experience the same behaviour with Ubuntu 20.04?

Best regards,
V

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bertramaerts
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Hi Vinicole,
Indeed only LTS Long Time Support versions of Ubuntu are officially supported by VMWare Workstation Pro 16.
I have this laptop since mid May 2021 and never used Ubuntu 20.04 so I can not compare. But soon Ubuntu 22.04 LTS will be released and I will use that version for 6 months. So within 2 months I will be able to see if the Ubuntu version has any impact on this issue. For now I have no clue if this is a Linux host issue, a VMWare Workstation issue or a Windows 11 guest issue.
Kind regards,
Bert

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bertramaerts
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Windows 11 did an update "VMware, Inc. - System - 9.8.18.0" which can be found back in this list:
https://www.catalog.update.microsoft.com/Search.aspx?q=vmware
My Windows 11 guest now has version 9.8.18.0 in the Device Manager for "VMWare VMCI Host Device" and "VMWare VMCI Bus Device" instead of version 9.8.16.0 from VMWare Tools 11.3.5.
This seems to bring improvement: much less unresponsiveness in the guest.
Two days ago VMWare released a new version of VMWare Tools: version 12.0.0 https://customerconnect.vmware.com/en/downloads/details?downloadGroup=VMTOOLS1200&productId=974&down... which also has this updated VMCI version that Microsoft installed.
I needed to download it from the page given and replace the file /usr/lib/vmware/isoimages/windows.iso. And then "Reinstall VMWare Tools" succeeded to get 12.0.0. The release notes of this new version list "Added Windows 11 and Windows Server 2022 support."
For the moment and only after a while, the unresponisiveness still happens for less than 5 seconds every 40 seconds. This new tools version is a step forward!

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bertramaerts
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I finally found a way to not have this issue and even to trigger this issue.
Not having this issue with VMWare Workstation Pro 16.2.3 and VMWare Tools 12.0.0 is not starting Matlab R2021b or R2022a in host Ubuntu before starting or while working with virtual guest Windows 11.
As soon as Matlab is running or even has been stopped already, I see in the System Monitor of Ubuntu peaks of 100% load on the 6 cores/threads used by the guest during 5 to 10 seconds every 40 seconds. During these peaks, Windows 11 is not responsive anymore. Starting and closing Matlab is an easy reproduction scenario.
So to avoid this full processor load issue, I need to boot Ubuntu and not use Matlab when VMWare Workstation Pro work has to be done. I have no idea how to further investigate this issue.

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