The virtual machine could not start - VMware Player

To whom it may concern

I have recently taken over a Primary School LAN that the former IT company maintained.  They basically run a Windows 2008 R2 Standard Server with VM Player and the virtual machine is also a Windows 2008 R2 Standard Domain controller.  They had a power outage and the virtual machine did not shut down properly.  When trying to start the Virtual Machine, I get the following error message:

"The virtual machine could not start. Make sure VMware Player is installed correctly and you have rights to run the software and to access all directories it uses, including directories in which the software is installed, directories containing the virtual disk and configuration files, and directories for temporary files."

On research I have found that I need to stop the VM Ware services and delete all the *.lck folders/files and also the *.vmem files.  When doing this I am able to start the virtual machine and start my Domain controller, but after shutting down the virtual machine and restarting the server, the *.lck files and *.vmem files restore in the Virtual Machine ISO directory and I have to go through the whole process to delete all the files before starting the virtual machine.  

Is there any way that the unneccessary files can be permanently deleted and that the Virtual Machine ISO can be repaired?

Please help with this problem as I am very novice on VM Ware.

Kind Regards
Lourens van DykIT Technical ConsultantAsked:
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
These files should only remain on incorrect VM shutdown.
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Mohammed KhawajaManager - Infrastructure:  Information TechnologyCommented:
Is the vmtools installed on the vm?
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Lourens van DykIT Technical ConsultantAuthor Commented:
It does not look like it.  I can only find VM Player installed.  I 'll attach the screens of what is installed on the server.
Program-Files-screenshot.jpg
Start-menu-screens.jpg
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
VMware Tools is installed in the Virtual Machine.
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Lourens van DykIT Technical ConsultantAuthor Commented:
Sorry about that.  Double check and it is installed on the Virtual Machine.
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Lourens van DykIT Technical ConsultantAuthor Commented:
Ok I was at the site yesterday and found the problem for the *.lck files and *.vmem files being created everytime the server starts up.

Basically the former IT Company created some way or another a startup entry for the VM Player to play the virtual machine at startup.  But this does not work as Interactive Services Detection shows up on startup and prevents VM Player from playing the virtual machine.  I have attached the screenshot displaying the error.  This screen minimizes, so you do not actually see it clearly.  So then what happens, because you do not see it, you try to play the virtual machine, but in real fact it already started.

So basically I updated to the latest version of VM Player which removed the startup automatically.  This solved the error as described in my question above, but I still want to start the virtual machine automatically without Interactive Services Detection error above.

I have read about a program called AlwaysUp that can start the VM Player at start up, but I am having trouble to execute the virtual machine.  So for the time being I am starting the virtual machine manually.  Is this the best program or is there a better one that you can recommend?  It does not have to be freeware.

Kind Regards
Interactive-Services-Detection-e.jpg
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
VMware Player is a very basic version of VMware Workstation which has these features.

Technically you could be also in breach of the VMware EULA, with VMware Player, which is intended for personal use only.

It would be wise to consider investigaing the use of VMware HYpervisor (ESXi) for FREE, which you can transfer this VM to, but this will require additional hardware.
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Lourens van DykIT Technical ConsultantAuthor Commented:
Like I said earlier, this is a setup that I took over from a former IT company.  I would never install VM Player on a server and use it in a production environment. Usually I would install Hyper V because it comes with the Windows 2008 R2, but their whole setup is already setup in the VMware so I should stick to it.  So basically as you said, I would need to transfer it to Hypervisor ESXi.  2 Questions:

Is there a type 2 hypervisor for VMware ESXi? Last time I had compatability issues with ESXi type 1 and Hardware RAID Controller.

How difficult is it to transfer VM Player image to VMware Hypervisor ESXi and do you have resources or can assist me with the transfer?
Thank you very much for your input.  I greatly appreciate it.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
VMware discontinued VMware Server type 3 in favour of ESXi.

Other alternative is VMware Workstation.

You can import or transfer virtual machines using VMware vCenter Standalone Converter I have EE articles I have written.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
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Lourens van DykIT Technical ConsultantAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the great articles Hanccocka.  I will definitely study them and use them as an advantage for my upcoming VMware course next year and use them to provide a VM solution for the school. If I don't manage with the VM's, I'll let you know.
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Lourens van DykIT Technical ConsultantAuthor Commented:
I hope this help others that has the same problem or has limited knowledge of VMware.
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Lourens van DykIT Technical ConsultantAuthor Commented:
Always check if *.lck files and *.vmem files are available after a restart, then you know that a virtual machine has started automatically.  Do not assume this is a problem with the VM or Player.  Please check startup via msconfig or program files startup to make sure.
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