VMware Troubleshooting – ‘Update Tools Failed. Edit The Virtual Machine’s vmx File’

Source : idtlearning.com

SCENARIO: While installing/updating VMware Tools from within a guest system (virtual machine) in ESXi/ESX environment using vSphere Client or another web client program.

ERROR DETAILS: Installation stops with the following error – “Update Tools Failed. Edit The Virtual Machine’s vmx File”.

CAUSE:

This is the default behavior of any ESXi/ESX environment. Updating VMware Tools from within a guest system is disabled by default due to security reasons.

RESOLUTION:

All you need to do is to instruct your ESXi/ESX server to allow installation of VMware Tools from within a guest system (virtual machine). To resolve the issue, you need to update the virtual machine’s configuration file and modify the default settings to enable VMware Tools installation.

HOW-TO GUIDE:

METHOD 1 – Using VMware vSphere Client

  • Log in to your ESXi/ESX Server Console (vCenter Server or Virtual Center) using vSphere Client or any other web client program that you are using.
  • Go to the list of Virtual Machines associated with this VMware server. Highlight the particular Virtual Machine, right click and select ‘Shutdown’ or ‘Power Off’.
  • After shutting down, right click on the VM again and click on ‘Edit Settings’.
  • A new ‘Settings’ dialogue box would pop up. Go to the ‘Options’ tab. Under ‘Advanced Settings’ select ‘General’.
  • Then click on ‘Configuration Parameters’. A new window would open that would have various configuration parameters listed in each row.
  • Click on ‘Add Row’ button and enter the string – isolation.tools.guestInitiatedUpgrade.disable. Make sure that you type ‘FALSE’ on the adjacent ‘Value’ field. By doing so you have instructed the server to allow installation/updates initiated by this virtual machine.
  • Click ‘OK’ to save the new settings. Again click ‘OK’ to close the dialogue box.
  • Power On the virtual machine.
  • Log out of the server console and log in to the guest operating system (virtual machine).
  • Start the VMware Tools upgrade from within the virtual machine. This time you won’t encounter the error and the installation would go ahead as expected.

METHOD 2 – Using vCenter Server GUI

  • Log in to vCenter Server console and shut down the virtual machine, if it is running.
  • Open the datastore browser and navigate to the virtual machine directory.
  • Click on the folder corresponding to this particular VM and locate the configuration file (.vmx). Right click and download the .vmx file to your local hard drive.
  • Open the .vmx file using any text editor. Then append the following line to the end of the file – isolation.tools.guestInitiatedUpgrade.disable = “FALSE”.
  • Save the file and then upload it to the virtual machine directory from where it was downloaded. If prompted of another file with the same name present in the same directory, override the file and save the new one. You can use datastore browser GUI for uploading the .vmx file.
  • Power on the virtual machine.
  • Start the VMware Tools upgrade from within the virtual machine. This time you won’t encounter the error and the installation would go ahead as expected.

Did this resolution work for you? We hope it does. If you would like to suggest any other alternative method to deal with this VMware Tools update error, kindly use the comments section below.

Keep a close watch on our blogs section for more such troubleshooting guides related to cloud and virtualization technology.

 

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