VMPlayer on Mandriva 2006 finally…



As you might recall some time back I talked about the release of vmplayer which is a free virtual machine “player” from vmware. Mostly, I wrote about the problems I had running it on my main desktop which was running Mandrake 10.1 at the time. The error was basically a signal 11 in the log file, which MOST everyone says is a hardware problem (or kernel…) Well, I tested the memory, everything seemed fine. Finally, I was having other issues and an itch for an upgrade, so I upgraded to an AMD64 3000 based system with 1GB of memory and did the upgrade to Mandriva 2006 as well (first with the original kernel, now with the updated kernel.) Vmplayer still refused to run.


I kept getting the signal 11. I started suspecting kernel modules and started blacklisting some to prevent loading, rmmod’ing etc…. still no luck, I tried running as root, no joy, etc. Mostly, over the last few months I’ve just used Qemu (with the new version of kqemu the speed is really impressive). But… i still wanted to get vmplayer running. My forum post yielded not much more than a “it might be fun to troubleshoot on Mandrake 10.1 but why not upgrade to 2006″ kind of answer…. after the 2006 upgrade, there didn’t seem to be any other help there.

So, last night as I was digging through the forums, I found an interesting post in a vmware workstation forum suggesting a fix to someone having a VERY similar error in the log. They basically suggested invoking vmware like this…. $VMWARE_USE_SHIPPED_GTK=yes vmware

And the poster reported it worked…. I substituted vmplayer $VMWARE_USE_SHIPPED_GTK=yes vmplayer and things FINALLY worked. (WHY CAN’T this be in a FAQ or troubleshooting guide I’ll never know.)

Anyway, after that success I went ahead and installed the beta of the vmware server (and am fairly impressed.)

The only other thing I’d like to update is that I timed the kubuntu Dapper iso boot time (cd iso) and found it to be 2 minutes 11 seconds (which is only about 10-20 seconds quicker to the desktop than the fastest qemu boot.) (I used 512MB of memory for this image.)

So, now after all that, I’ve been busily making vmware images out of my many qemu images to test….

BTW – for a long term fix, I’ve got the following in my .bash_profile on the affected machine now…

export VMWARE_USE_SHIPPED_GTK=yes

and it looks like it should do the trick.

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