vmx86.sys: Could not initialize monitor

Yesterday, I removed the GeForce 8400 GS video card of a computer with an Intel Core i5 2400 CPU because this computer had an integrated Intel HD Graphics 2000 chipset that is more powerful than a GeForce 8400 GS. (A GeForce 8400 GS works at a core speed of 567 MHz while an Intel HD Graphics 2000 clocks at 650 – 1250 MHz.) I thought removing the card would be safe because it has been a while since the monitor was plugged into the Intel graphic subsystem and the Geforce card was offline. I was wrong.

This machine is the same machine on which I run a VMware Workstation v8.0 that runs multiple virtual machines. After removing the video card and uninstalling its drivers (nVIDIA Forceware v301.42), however, my virtual machine refused to start, displaying the following ominous error message:

Could not get vmx86.sys driver version: The handle is invalid. You have an incorrect version of driver "vmx86.sys". Try reinstalling VMware Workstation 8. Failed to initialize monitor device.

Error message generated by VMware Workstation 8 after having removed a graphic component from a desktop computer.

Immediately afterwards, there came another error message:

Cannot find a valid peer process to connect to.

Error message generated by VMware Workstation 8 after having removed a graphic component from a desktop computer.

While searching the web using Bing, I discovered a post titled “WMware Workstation 8 running Windows 8” that had suggested several workarounds for running WMware Workstation 8 on Windows 8:

We have found that Workstation INSTALLED on Windows 8 requires a slight configuration change in order to run virtual machines.

After installing Workstation 8 on Windows 8 you can do any one of the following:

1. Add your user to the to __vmware__ group

2. Run Workstation 8 in compatibility mode for Windows XP SP3 – (right click on the desktop icon, click on Properties, select the compatibility tab and check the compatibility mode box)

3. Run Workstation 8 as an administrator – (right click on the desktop icon and select Run as Administrator)

I was, of course, running Windows 7, not Windows 8. But the workaround worked for me.

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Posted on 21 July 2012, in Windows Administration and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. This excellent website definitely has all of the info
    I wanted concerning this subject and didn’t know who to ask.

  2. Amazing! Fixed my problem straight away! now i just need to get past the apple logo in Mac OS X Lion

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