I spoke to VMware Tech Support just now. While this issue has been characterized as a bug in their internal database, they don't know when it will be fixed. The earliest possibility would be with the release of ESX 4 Update 2 in approximately one month. Their bug fixing priorities are determined by "the squeaky wheel gets the grease," so any readers of this post with support contracts should consider reporting this issue as well. They said that the KB article "Disable SVGA drivers installed with VMware Tools on Windows 7 and Windows 2008 R2" (http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1011709) should be updated to reflect any new information when it is available. They also said they would email me. I'll post anything new that I hear. Happy New Year to everyone. Jeff.
The driver will install correctly, but I cannot confirm whether or not it fixes the console freeze since I did not spend enough time on the VM. I have been using the Microsoft provided VESA driver (as suggested by the KB article) since the beginning of R2 and haven't had any issues and is what I would recommend as well.
When I originally created my templates I set the graphics to 8MB of video RAM for the VESA driver and have had them at the level ever since and haven't had any performance issues.
According to this new KB article, it's supposed to work with the ESX4 Update 1 WDDM drivers and at least 8MB video RAM:
Can anyone confirm that?
I can confirm that this made no difference. I set the VM to use 32 MB VRAM and used the driver suggested and my 2008 R2 VM still locked up when using the vSphere Client console.
I take back what I wrote earlier. I have been able to install the WDDM driver and so far neither of my Windows 2008 R2 VMs have locked up! Here was my problem:
1. I did not have the latest VMware Tools installed. Even though vCenter said that the tools status was OK, I brought up the tools inside of the VM and they were an older build than ESXi 4.0.0 build 219382. I upgraded the VMware Tools and now the build numbers match.
2. Per http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1016770/ you must manually browse to "C:\Program Files\Common Files\VMware\Drivers\wddm_video" folder to install the WDDM driver. If you only browse to the "C:\Program Files\Common Files\VMware\Drivers" folder, as suggested in the KB article, when Windows searches for a driver it will find the incorrect VMware SVGA II driverin the "C:\Program Files\Common Files\VMware\Drivers\video" folder and install it. My guess is because v comes before w alphabetically and it installs the first driver that it finds.
Again, you must manually browse to "C:\Program Files\Common Files\VMware\Drivers\wddm_video" to install the WDDM driver in Windows 2008 R2.
So far I have not experienced the lockedp issue after performing both of the steps above.
Wow so Update 2 will be out in February? Seems like Update 1 was just released. I have several open cases with VMware that I hope are resolved in U2. Their lack of QA testing is astonshing to me.
i don't seem to have this files on my W2K8 R2 machine. The whole folder C:\Program Files\Common Files\VMware is missing. Where do they come from? VMware Tools are installed.
Assuming you have ESX 4.0 RTM or U1 installed, try uninstalling and reinstalling the VMware Tools. This is where the C:\Program Files\Common Files\VMware comes from.
This issue seems very specific to certain models of server. I have a ML 360 G5 and a ML 360 G6. The G5 has this issue where the G6 doesn't. I think it's related to the host hardware as the GFX Cards are different. The G5 having the Matrox card.
Also, the HP servers seem to have an issue with E1000 network card sometimes. I had a combination of all issues.
The WDM driver does not work. Only uninstalling VMWare tools and reinstalling without the SVGA driver worked for me. Problem seems chronic on HP servers, especially the G5 series.
Tested: ML110, 150, DL 360, G5 and G6's
No issues with G6 series so far.
Hope this info helps some of you as this caused me a weekend of headaches.
I'm still getting freezing, but if I don't use the console it seems to be fine.
I am not sure if this is the right thread but I am facing issues with installing Windows 2008 32 bit server in a VM on vsphere Update 1. When I boot the VM it says loading files and then i can see the windows logo and thats it. Either a blank screen or a blue screen. I belive its something related to the scsi controller. If not what can it be?? if yes which scsi controller should i use.?
I can confirm this issue (w2k8 R2 freezes on vSphere console) on HP DL380 G5 series (2 hosts) with Quad-Core CPUs 5420 and 5355 (I think it happens on both, but need a separate test again, my colegue observe it),
Im working on sollution, especially based on tWiZzLeR responces.
Give You info if I'll solve it...or not...
ok guys, little update,
in my tests easiest and only one working sollution was changing VMware SVGA graphics card to Standard VGA Graphics Adapter from MS, its working slower but dont freeze, if VMware employees will find bettter solution they probably publish it as an update.
ESX 4.0 Update 2 is now available and along with it an upgrade for the VMware Tools. On my Windows Server 2008 R2 VMs, where I had uninstalled the VMware video driver and was using the standard Microsoft driver, the VMware Tools upgrade process left this Micorosft driver in place. Also of interest is the fact that the VMware Tools update removed the folders C:\Program Files\Common Files\VMware\Drivers\video and C:\Program Files\Common Files\VMware\Drivers\wddm_video that had been installed by VMware Tools from ESX 4.0 Update 1.
The KB article that we have been referencing all along (http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1011709) has been retitled "Troubleshooting SVGA drivers installed with VMware Tools on Windows 7 and Windows 2008 R2 running on ESX 4.0". It was last updated June 1, 2010, and does not as yet make any reference to ESX 4.0 Update 2.
It seems to me that the best course of action at the moment is to continue to use the built-in Microsoft video driver with Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows 7 VMs.
It would be interesting to hear from those of you who currently have either the VMware SVGA or WDDM driver installed on Windows Server 2008 R2 or Windows 7. Does the ESX 4.0 Update 2 VMware Tools upgrade cause either of these drivers to be uninstalled if they are in use?
I used the WDDM driver on W7 under U1. When I upgraded to U2 it left the WDDM driver in place. Since VMware claims the XP driver is not supported on U1 and later, it's no surprise to me that U2 kept the WDDM driver. I haven't tried such an upgrade on WS2008R2.