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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.


  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!

28 thoughts on “Workaround for the NAT port forwarding issue in Fusion 8.1

  1. Jen

    I tried this, and it didn’t work:

    Enabled hostonly virtual adapter on vmnet1
    Started DHCP service on vmnet1
    Failed to start NAT service on vmnet8
    Enabled hostonly virtual adapter on vmnet8
    Started DHCP service on vmnet8
    Failed to start some/all services

  2. Markus Mayer

    It’s a no-go for me as well. I did change ownership and permissions. Still doesn’t work.

    $ ls -l /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-natd
    -rwxr-xr-x 1 root wheel 1137472 12 Jan 17:12 /Applications/VMware Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-natd
    $ md5 /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-natd
    MD5 (/Applications/VMware Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-natd) = e347f5c8d86640af5102852c897e31cc

    $ sudo /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-cli –start
    Enabled hostonly virtual adapter on vmnet1
    Started DHCP service on vmnet1
    Failed to start NAT service on vmnet8
    Enabled hostonly virtual adapter on vmnet8
    Started DHCP service on vmnet8
    Failed to start some/all services

    $ defaults read “/System/Library/CoreServices/SystemVersion” ProductVersion

  3. Rob S

    When do you expect to address this issue with a new release? I rather have a working product vs a workaround/patch. This is preventing my entire team from updating.

  4. Joey Memory

    I too am not able to get this workaround to work. Any idea when a fix will be released for the NAT port forwarding issue in Fusion 8.1?

  5. Llaslo

    I was able to install the downloaded file and get all my services started as expected; however, this did not resolve the issue I was having with SSH on my Windows VM. These are the steps I did:

    1. Download updated vmnet-natd file
    2. Backup existing vmnet-natd file
    3. Replace existing file with downloaded file
    4. Change owndership of the new file:
    $ ~ sudo chown root /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-natd
    5. Change file privileges:
    $ ~ sudo chmod +x /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-natd
    6. Stop the network services
    $ ~ sudo /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-cli –stop
    Stopped DHCP service on vmnet1
    Disabled hostonly virtual adapter on vmnet1
    Stopped DHCP service on vmnet8
    Stopped NAT service on vmnet8
    Disabled hostonly virtual adapter on vmnet8
    Stopped all configured services on all networks
    6. Start the network services
    $ ~ sudo /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-cli –start
    Enabled hostonly virtual adapter on vmnet1
    Started DHCP service on vmnet1
    Started NAT service on vmnet8
    Enabled hostonly virtual adapter on vmnet8
    Started DHCP service on vmnet8
    Started all configured services on all networks

    Details of the problem are on my blog here: http://bit.ly/20rfh9i

  6. P Fonseca


    It worked for me.

    What I’ve done:

    1. Stop Fusion;
    2. back-up old file and copy the new one;
    3. sudo chown root:wheel /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-natd ;
    4. sudo chmod 755 /Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmnet-natd ;
    5. Start Fusion

    Stop and start services are not needed if you apply changes like this.



    1. Massimo B.

      That worked smoothly for me – but, boys, try to fix this thing asap in an official release!

  7. D Thompson

    Just echoing that the workaround resolved the problem for me once I also changed the file permissions to a mask of 0755 and set ownership to root wheel

    sudo chmod 0755 vmware-natd
    sudo chown root:wheel vmware-natd

  8. Alex B

    I just set up a new guest Ubuntu server – everything working fine. Turned on NAT to access Apache on the guest and suddenly my networking went haywire – initially I could get to the guest Apache but then things somehow disintegrated and the guest networking was broken. DNS not resolving, unable to ping out, etc.

    Turned off the NAT port forwarding and all returned to normal.

    Finally found this page and implemented the patch – quit Fusion, replaced the file, did the chown/chmod, restarted Fusion, restarted guest – all working. Re-implemented NAT port forwarding – all working including port forwarding.

    Thank you!
    — Alex

  9. Jonathan

    When are you going to release 8.1.1 or 8.2 that incorporates a fix for this?! I’ve just spent the last 10 weeks constantly trying to work around this bug, before FINALLY finding this solution. I was completely unable to work remotely due to this bug, as we have to VPN into our work network, meaning all of my VMs have to nat’ed. I couldn’t downgrade back to Fusion 7.x as we purchased an upgrade license to Fusion 8.x, meaning the Fusion 7.x license becomes invalid. Very fundamental bug to miss during release testing VmWare!

    1. Michael Roy

      We released the fix for this on Thursday last week, and are in the process of notifying users about the update right now =)

  10. Paul Forgey

    This problem seems to be still present in 8.1.1. Will this patch work for 8.1.1 or shall I revert back to 8.1 with this patch?

    1. Nancy Zhang

      Hi Paul,

      Could you describe how it does not work, you could not see natd service or port forwarding does not work? If port forwarding does not work, please check if the nat.conf is configured. Thanks .

      1. Paul Forgey

        re-applying the patch over my 8.1.1 installation fixed the problem. Like others commenting, the problem still seems to be present in 8.1.1, but fortunately, the patch also seems to work fine over 8.1.1.

  11. Double You Tea Eff

    Just updated to 8.1.1 and this seems to still be happening. Seriously guys?

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  13. Martin Heinrich

    Just updated 8.5. Like with 8.1 and 8.1.1 port forwarding is not working correctly. Downgrading to 8.0 resolves all issues.

  14. Phil

    I’ve been having problems with VPN inside VMWare Fusion since version 8, I can establish a VPN connection however traffic doesn’t appear to flow properly and I can’t access anything via the VPN.

  15. Tom

    I have this issue in 8.5.8 and attempted to log a service ticket but am unable to do so. I don’t understand why I must pay for support to get a working product for which I paid for. I installed the binary listed in this thread but it did not resolve the problem. I don’t want to downgrade as Phil states he did. You need to fix this or risk the loss of paying customers.

  16. Gautier

    I had a similar issue with the version 8.5.8

    but it was the fact that in my windows guest, the network was seen as “public” or “unidentified” that caused the issue
    By clicking on the network icon in the taskbar, i told windows to “resolve the problem” and for the first time in my life this thing worked and actually did correct the issue. (something with a DHCP not active)
    My IP changed from a 172. to a 192. and the nat worked.

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