Kernel 2.6.40 on Fedora 15 Breaks VMWare

Have VMware? Update your Fedora?

Turns out that 2.6.40 breaks VMWare pretty badly. This is VMWare’s fault because they’re using the old locking in the kernel. They’re normally pretty quick about this stuff but I was unable to find an “official” fix. We’ll wait and see.

In the mean time, this patch will get you working.

To use it, you need to download VM Player or Workstation, you need to fail the install once, then apply the patch. Then try starting VMWare player/workstation again. It’s not the most elegant thing, but it works. Also even though the patch is for 2.6.39, it will work on 2.6.40.

How To Find the VMWare Workstation License in Linux

Howto find the VMWare workstation license on your linux box?

No-one seems to have this, which is really, really annoying because if you move VMWare to another desktop or you’re like me and you alternate between your desktop and laptop, you want to use your companies VMWare workstation license. WHERE COULD THIS BE? The knowledge base suggests using regedit.exe to find it!

Protip – Novell may have been sold, but it wasn’t sold to Microsoft.

Check in $HOME/.vmware/ and you’ll see a file like license-ws-70-e1-200904 (for VMWare 7 and yes I know I’m behind).

Inside this file should be the line Serial = “XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX”

Resist the urge to copy this file wholesale to the new host, the host hash is what VMWare uses to figure out where each VM was copied. If you copy the file whole, any VM copied from the other VMWare host won’t go through the reconfig process and things will get screwy.

Dash Flips Out!

Filed under “things which are disparagingly bad”. The latest VMWare release won’t install on my box, so I decided to pop open the top of the script to see what the problem was.

GrainsOfParadise:/home/jknarr # head -500 VMware-Player-3.0.1-227600.x86_64.bundle
#!/usr/bin/env bash
# VMware Installer Launcher
# This is the executable stub to check if the VMware Installer Service
# is installed and if so, launch it.  If it is not installed, the
# attached payload is extracted, the VMIS is installed, and the VMIS
# is launched to install the bundle as normal.

# Architecture this bundle was built for (x86 or x64)

if [ -z “$BASH” ]; then
# $- expands to the current options so things like -x get passed through
if [ ! -z “$-” ]; then

# dash flips out of $opts is quoted, so don’t.
exec /usr/bin/env bash $opts “$0” “$@”
echo “Unable to restart with bash shell”
exit 1

Oh. God.


God, did VMWare screw the pooch.

ESXi is released, and they announce that they’re ending the server virtualization product (GSX) and freezing it at 1.0.6, which is just peechy since it doesn’t support OES2 (SuSE) or Redhat’s latest enterprise linux offering. Basically, they got it to a level where they were one version behind “enterprise” and decided to railroad you into ESX.

ESX doesn’t suck, and they’ve given it away free thus far and gone for a “pay for features” model.


So here I am in a state where I can’t power on two server VMs I built. These are both migrations from the free one to the ESXi (the I means free, but sometimes it’s an O, but sometimes O means offline, just bear with me). There’s a fix for logging into the VM host itself and running some commands to change the time. You can also accomplish this through the interface itself if you don’t have login.

Oh did I mention that logging into the VM host through SSH is a licensed feature you have to pay for?

So there’s another option – RCLI. RCLI is something available to you through the client if you pay for VMWare Infrastructure. Also big bucks.

Option 3? Use the VMWare Update Manager. What? It’s not installed on VMWare ESXi’s client? You can download it from our website and we’re giving everyone a 60 day eval until you have to pay for it!

At this rate, we’re dumping VMWare for the same reason we dumped Solaris. It’s got a lot of nifty features and it works really well when it works – but between shoddy patching and “every time we fuck up you need to spend money to upgrade” style support, it’s not worth it to me to keep messing with. Considering that SuSE’s XEN virtualization offerings are quickly overtaking VMWare’s feature set, in six months I’m not re-upping the contracts with these clowns.