Please attach the VM's .vmx file to a reply post.
Sometimes it's simply an unexpected setting which causes this.
The configuration file has an entry
ide1:0.deviceType = "cdrom-image"
which basically points to an iso image, but there's no reference to it.
Please change the VM's virtual CD-ROM setting to e.g. "Use physical drive", and disable "Connect at power on" to see whether this helps.
That was the secret sauce that got things back on track!