Unable to access VMware Workstation Guest after Host Machine crash

Unable to access VMware Workstation Guest after Host Machine crash

Scenario:

While doing SharePoint 2010 development is now able to be done from within a Windows 7 64bit system and even inside of a Hyper-V VM, many of us in the wide world of computing are still using VMware Workstation, Fusion, Player, or even the old VMware GSX Server to run local development environments.  This post deals with how to get back into a VM that seems horribly locked after your workstation hosting your VM crashes hard.

Symptom:

System crashed while a VMware Workstation Guest was running. The VM now reports that it is in use by the current host. Taking ownership of the VM is not possible.  All hope is starting to fade…

Solution:

Go to the VM location and delete the .lck files and folders. This will unlock the VM Guest and allow you to boot in.  VMware treats this like a hard server reset, and offers safe mode booting at that point. If the system is able to recover cleanly, it gets you back to operational.

Caveat:

Just like anytime you hard reset a server you must be prepared to deal with the consequences.  Data loss, data corruption, and complete system failure is possible as a result of such action.

However if you are left with the alternative of complete system rebuild already, it might be worth a shot.  Just don’t blame me if your system is toasty afterwards.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *