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Meet the team!

One of our signs at our Palo Alto campus

The Fusion and Workstation teams are having a very busy year. Since we shipped Fusion 8 and Workstation 12 almost a year ago, we’ve been busy adding new skills to the development teams so that we can take the products in a new and compelling direction. Added to that, the team has released several updates that you really should be loading on to your systems – they make the products better in a bunch of ways that are described here, here and here.

Given that some of the new features we’re working on are aimed at developers, we recently sponsored a Macworld party at WWDC so that people could meet the me and the rest of the management team. I was impressed by how passionate and supportive the party-goers were, and we certainly learned a lot. Our backlog of ideas almost doubled!

MacWorld-party-2016

Early shot of the rooftop Patio Party with Macworld and friends during WWDC 2016, VMware’s Andy Morris can be seen on the very right in the middle of some intense conversation with our eStore team director, Michael B.

More sober and back in the office, it occurred to us that more people might like to meet the team too. The management team is boring, that’s just the five of us Powerpoint jockies; the real teams that do the hard work of building, delivering and supporting the products are a diverse group of people spread all over the world.

Our Palo Alto braintrust. Without these geniuses, we wouldn't be having this conversation!

Our Palo Alto braintrust. Without these geniuses, we wouldn’t be having this conversation! Ooh, and check out the turtles in our pond!

The core compute, storage and network guys work on all of VMware’s hypervisors and are known as Layer 1. These guys build the hypervisor as well as our Virtual Devices (all the “hardware” that Windows/guests see), the Graphics stack, the Networking stack, VMware Tools, VMRC (the ‘console’ view), USB devices, and the list goes on… In the photo is about half of the group. Every one of the people in this photo is a certifiable genius, and without these guys, a whole industry would not exist.

Our Hosted UI and Quality teams

Our Hosted UI and Quality teams

Once they’ve done their voodoo, as they do, they pass the base code to these guys, our Hosted-UI (Product) and QE (Quality) teams. These folks have the incredibly difficult task of turning what is basically just cool tech, in to the products you love. And they do it exceedingly well. Every time we do a customer survey, Workstation and Fusion score the highest of all our products for quality and satisfaction. Our Hosted-UI team members, past and present, put in a lot of hours making Fusion and Workstation the amazing products they are today, and for that we can’t begin to express our gratitude.  By the same extension, we couldn’t be more excited about what we have in store for the future!

 

The Support team!

The Support team!

Of course, even with awesome quality control, sometimes you just need help solving a problem, and that’s where these guys come in. This is about half of our 24 hour, 7 days a week, Fusion and Workstation support staff. These guys are the ones we listen to the most. Building new products is fun, but we’re very aware that you rely on them to solve real world problems. These guys are our canaries, our triage, our compass. We couldn’t do it without them.

 

This combined team is working tirelessly to support you in your business. They’ve got a great surprise lined up for Q3, something very interesting for Q4, and something very big for H1. It’s not easy delivering a product that is downloaded almost 5 million times a year, but these people are the very best at what they do, and we’re proud to have them with us.

 

Fix for installing macOS Sierra as a VM

I love our dev teams.

These folks work tirelessly to make sure that the crazy complexity that is Fusion and Workstation are able to support both the latest and greatest as well as the ancient and obsolete.

In this particular case, Apple had released a Developer Preview of their latest iteration of their Mac operating system previously called OS X. The new macOS Sierra has plenty of features to delight, but installing it in a virtual machine with VMware Fusion to test it out was met with some complications that I wrote about.

That workaround was a bit of an exercise, but our team has a more graceful fix ready to go now.

It’s a pretty small patch, only a couple of lines changed for one of our supporting scripts, but it makes the entire process as easy as ‘drag .app onto the New VM wizard, click next, wait for the magic to delight you’.

The Fix:

We need to replace a single file that’s located in your VMware Fusion app bundle.

To do this, go to your /Applications folder and right-click / ctrl-click the VMware Fusion.app

Select ‘Show Package Contents’

Navigate into Contents > Library

There’s a file in there called ‘Create Mavericks Installer.tool’. We must replace this with the patched one.

You can download the patched file from our newly-created “officially unofficial” Github page located here:

github.com/vmwarefusion

github.com/vmwarefusion/sierra-vm-installer-fix

Fusion-github

I plan on using this Github space to host random patch files and other interesting stuff, so feel free to fork and submit a pull request if you think there’s something we could do better in this script or anything else we post up there in the future.  It’s not exactly ‘Open Source VMware Fusion’, but it’s a step in the right direction I think 😉

So go ahead, download the .tool file, replace the existing one with the patched one and get your macOS on!

Github users you know what to do, for folks that may be new to Github just click the green ‘clone or download’ button and choose ‘download .zip’.

github-download-zip

Fusion doesn’t even need to be powered off.

Once you replace the file you should be able to click ‘File > New’ in Fusion, and simply drop the ‘Install 10.12 Developer Preview.app’ directly onto the New VM wizard.

**Update**

Forgot about permissions… You’ll have to adjust permissions at the command line with the following 2 commands:

sudo chmod 755 /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/Create\ Mavericks\ Installer.tool
sudo xattr -rc /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/Create\ Mavericks\ Installer.tool

If you have the windows open in Finder you can just type ‘sudo chmod 755’ and then drag and drop the Create Mavericks Installer.tool onto the Terminal window. Or be lazy and just paste what I wrote above which will work on any system 😉

Simple as that!

 

macOS Sierra and VMware Fusion 8

Hot off the heels of WWDC, Apple has made available the next major update to it’s flagship operating system for Mac. With a new name, macOS, Apple seems to be getting away from the OS X moniker and aligning with the rest of the OS’s that it has in it’s bag: tvOS, iOS, watchOS, and now macOS.

Users have been excited to run this in a VM to test, but it doesn’t “just work” in Fusion yet unfortunately. The reason is that Developer Preview builds have debugging code included which changes the memory layout of the installer. We specifically require a certain block layout of the .app to create the bootable install image, but because the layout is different due to debugging code, it fails with an ‘Internal Error’.

There are 2 ways to get around this:

  1. Install 10.11 and upgrade it to 10.12
  2. Manually create the bootable install image and attach it to an empty 10.11 VM.

The first one is pretty easy, and you can make an OS X 10.11 VM using the recovery partition with just a couple of clicks from File > New.

Once it’s up and you’ve installed VMware Tools, you can drag the ‘Install 10.12 Developer Preview.app’ onto the desktop of your 10.11 VM, double-click it and begin the install.

For folks that don’t have the time or who want to walk through a fresh installation there is a multi-step method that I’ve written about here that will show you the way and explain what’s happening along the trip.

www.mikeroysoft.com/macos-sierra-on-fusion-8/

For folks who want to run Sierra on the Mac itself and use Fusion, there is a bit of a bug that we’re working on, but there’s an easy workaround.

Currently if you try to run a VM it will fail/crash with an ‘Internal Error’.

The simple work around for now is to disable 3D graphics acceleration (per-VM setting). 

It’s possible that this ‘goes away’ when Apple moves to the public beta branch (it has different debugging code enabled than the developer previews), but we’ll be keeping a close eye on things as they develop and share what we learn.

Overall, I’ve found that macOS Sierra as a Host and as a Guest work pretty well. Siri tends to work better on the Host in my experience, so we’ll be examining how to make it a smooth experience in a VM as well. For now, my advice is to speak slowly to her when she’s ‘trapped’ in a VM 😉

(talking about AI with ‘he’ and ‘she’ is weird… welcome to the future!)

Fusion 8.1.1 Available Now with Important Networking fixes!

Hi Everyone,

Over the weekend we rolled out an update to Fusion 8 and Fusion 8 Pro that brings our version to 8.1.1.

The important fix has resolved a NAT port forwarding and DNS lookup issues that some users have been experiencing, particularly those who work with Hashicorp’s Vagrant plugin for VMware.

We’ve also addressed USB issues, Fusion crashes related to graphics, and we’ve plugged up a memory leak.

Get it via auto-update today, or grab the download directly from your MyVMware portal or our trial pages (you can drag the trial right over the copy in your /Applications folder, all your licensing and preference information is saved elsewhere)

 

Details from the release notes:

The following issues were resolved in this version of VMware Fusion.

  • Resolved: Running graphic software with MSAA enabled causes VMware Fusion to crash
    • In a Windows virtual machine, running graphic software, such as a Realtime Landscape Architect program, or a graphic game, such as Civilization 4, with Multisample anti-aliasing (MSAA) enabled causes VMware Fusion to crash.
  • Resolved: Resizing the window of a running virtual machine causes host-system memory to leak
    • Resizing the window of a running virtual machine by dragging its corner causes the amount of system memory used to increase. You can observe the memory usage by looking at the Memory Used value on the Memory tab of the Activity Monitor.
  • Resolved: Enabling port forwarding breaks NAT
    • Enabling any port forwarding prevents the vmnat supporting application to fail to perform Network Address Translation functions
  • Resolved: Installing an automatic update unexpectedly suspends remote virtual machines
    • In VMware Fusion, after you connect to a remote virtual machine stored on either an ESXi server or a Workstation Server instance, as Fusion updates, the automatic update suspends or shuts down the running remote virtual machine, in addition to the running virtual machines that are stored on the local disk.
  • Resolved: Connecting specific USB devices to a virtual machine through a USB 3.0 controller causes issues
    • In VMware Fusion 8.1, the following situations occur when you connect the specified USB devices to a virtual machine through a USB 3.0 controller:
      • USB 3.0 scanner – this type of device does not function inside a virtual machine.
      • USB 3.0 flash drive – you cannot format this type of device inside a virtual machine.

VMware + GNS3: The Great Topology Challenge!

Our good friends at GNS3 are running a really awesome contest for the month of March!

“Build the biggest, boldest topology in GNS3 that you can. With the new release of v1.4.x, the ability to build big and bold topologies has never been easier. Leverage the new Local GNS3 VM to help build your topology.  At the end of the month, we will select 5 winning topologies that represent the best of what the GNS3 software is capable of doing.

New to GNS3? No worries! We will also be randomly selecting 5 contestants who will be receiving a prize. So submit whatever topology you can and join in the challenge!

10 Copies of VMware Workstation Pro ($250 each) or VMware Fusion ($75 each) – winner gets to choose what they would like. 5 Top contestants will get a copy as well as 5 randomly selected contestants.”

Simple! Build a gigantic topology with GNS3 for a chance to win one of 10 copies of Fusion 8 Pro or Workstation 12 Pro! And it’s a great contest with chances to win for both seasoned GNS3 users as well as new users to the platform.

GNS3 works best with VMware Workstation 12 Pro and VMware Fusion 8 Pro, the recommended virtualization solutions, and GNS3 users can now take 20% off the sticker price of Fusion 8 or Workstation 12 Pro!

What is GNS3 you may ask?

VMware Workstation Pro has been the ‘swiss army knife’ for IT admins for the past 15+ years, and while Workstation has been long regarded as the IT Admin’s tool of choice, it’s increasingly becoming the same for Network Engineers and ADmin as well.

Combining GNS3 and VMware gives that swiss army knife to Network Engineers in a very meaningful way.

From their site, GNS3 is a tool to:

Build, Design and Test your network in a risk-free virtual environment and access the largest networking community to help. Whether you are studying for your first networking exam or building out a state-wide telecommunications network, GNS3 offers an easy way to design and build networks of any size without the need for hardware. And the best part is it’s free!

logo-colour

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So get out there and go build a gigantic topology with GNS3 and win your copy of VMware Workstation 12 Pro or VMware Fusion 8 Pro!

Workaround for the NAT port forwarding issue in Fusion 8.1

We recently discovered that NAT network port forwarding doesn’t work properly in Fusion 8.1.

While the VMware Fusion team is working on a fix which will be included in the next update, here is a temporary workaround.

Steps:

  1. Download the NAT network component from https://www.vmware.com/go/dl_vmnet-natd (MD5: e347f5c8d86640af5102852c897e31cc)
  2. Replace /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-natd with the file downloaded in step 1.
  3. Restart the NAT network with the following commands:

sudo /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-cli ––stop

sudo /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-cli ––start

Then port forwarding for NAT network should work as normal. 

Sorry for the inconvenience! Hope this helps!

Getting Started with VMware Fusion eBook: $5

Happy new year friends!

Did you know about this little book I wrote called ‘Getting Started With VMware Fusion’? No? Well good news! It’s on sale for $5!

Before I moved down here to Silicon Valley, I was a lead on the Fusion / Workstation Support team in Canada, and in 2014 I was asked by the good folks at Packt Publishing to write a book about Fusion. So, with great excitement, I took much of what I had learned from my life in Support about how to get the most from VMware Fusion and put them into an easy-to read guide for beginners and advanced users alike.

And for $5, it’s a great resource for all Fusion users to make the most of their investment in VMware.

Get it here: “Getting Started with VMware Fusion”

It’s a handy resource for folks new to Fusion, and filled with great tips even for those who have been using Fusion for years.

The sale ends this Friday, Jan 8th 2016, and in addition to my little book there are a ton of other VMware related resources in there… everything from vCenter to vRealize Operations, Horizon View, or even ThinApp!

https://www.packtpub.com/all/?search=vmware

Enjoy!

 

Just in time for the Holidays!

It’s only Monday, and we’re already off to a fantastic week for VMware Fusion 8!

First, we were so full of holiday jeer that we just couldn’t help ourselves, and so we launched a Holiday Sale for Fusion 8 and Fusion 8 Pro! Click Here to get to the store and take 30% (!!) off Fusion 8 and Fusion 8 Pro… good for both Upgrades and New Instals!

http://store.vmware.com

Then, we got word that the good folks over at Network World have done a roundup of all their most beloved tech products of 2015, and VMware Fusion 8 made the list!

“it’s a DevOps and infrastructure engineer’s delight […] a startlingly handy hypervisor “

We couldn’t agree more! Thanks for including us, we’re humbled to be such a valuable tool in so many people’s daily lives!

Link to the Network World article

We at VMware are so very grateful for all the support and enthusiasm of our customers, the dedication of our engineers, the zeal of our evangelists, and the passion of our partners and friends.

The VMware Fusion team wishes everyone a happy holiday season!

Fusion’s Future

Hi everyone,

As we’re winding down the year, planning is well underway for the next big releases of Fusion and Fusion Pro.

With me being new to the role of being responsible for the entirety of the Fusion experience, all the way from initial awareness to buying, using and getting support, I’m working on a multi-year plan of how we’re going to take Fusion into the future.

I personally think it would be wrong of me to do this without hearing from our users and the community.  I’ve always wanted to do right by our users, and I hope that giving you a forum to voice your thoughts underscores our commitment to ‘do the right thing’.

The world has been changing since Apple first brought OS X to x86, allowing us to do this amazing thing called Virtualization. But with changing times people are using Fusion for a variety of different reasons that we may not have originally thought of.

So, I’d like to use this thread as a forum to get direct feedback from you on what you think Fusion could do next.

  • Let’s hear about how you use Fusion and what else might help make that experience even better.
  • Let’s hear about what Fusion doesn’t do today that would make your lives easier.
  • Let’s hear about what Fusion does that drives you crazy!
  • Do you deploy Fusion en-masse in the office? What can we do better for this use case? (and did you know about Horizon FLEX??)
  • Do you build software using Fusion? How can we make that a more productive and joyful experience? 

Lastly, I just want to say thank you to all of our users.  It’s been a great year for us, and for me personally. I’m immensely proud of what the team here has been able to deliver over the years, and we couldn’t be more excited to take things to the next level with you by our side.

Here’s a link to the community thread to continue the discussion

Happy Holidays!

-Mike

(Please note comments have been disabled on this post, please join the discussion in the VMware Communities linked above)

Fusion 8.1 is available now!

Today we’ve released an update to Fusion 8 and Fusion 8 Pro with version 8.1.

We’ve included a raft of bug fixes in the following areas:

  • Fixes an issues with the Easy Install process misinterpreting Windows 10 Version 1511 ISO images as Windows server 2012 R2 images
  • Resolved an issue where reverse DNS lookup does not work in a virtual machine when a dnsmasq server is installed and configured on the Mac host.
  • Fixed a crashing issue when unplugging a monitor from the Mac when Fusion is in Full Screen view with multiple monitors.
  • Fixed an issue with Microsoft Excel responding to input with a one-second delay
  • Fixed an issue when using USB devices with a virtual machine on an OS X 10.11 host might cause the virtual machine to crash.
  • Fixed an issue when the host and guest non-English language keyboard layout differ when the virtual machine is accessed remotely using VNC.
  • Fixed an issue when a USB Attached SCSI (UAS) device connected to a USB 3.0 port on a Mac OS X 10.9 or later host might fail to successfully connect to the guest.
  • Resolved an issue when copying a large file between a USB storage device and an OS X virtual machine might stall and fail.

This update is free for all Fusion 8 customers.

Full release notes

Direct Download Link