I noticed today after installing WS8 I cannot change the "Automatically update VMware Tools on a virtual machine" option unless I am running as an admin. See attached pic.
I tried setting permissions on config.ini and also deleting it completely (so it can be regenerated) and the problem persists. My guess is that since other options that reside in that file are not editable without admin rights (grayed out the UI) that this option probably also needs to be grayed out for the same reason.
I understand the issues behind this, so my bet is its only an issue for Win7/Vista (and probably now Win 8 if you're that keen) hosts.
Thanks for reporting this.