Macos – Restoring VMware Fusion virtual machine from Time Machine Mac OSX

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I was having problems with my keyboard and the genius bar people at the Apple store told me to make a backup of my computer and reinstall the operating system. I did this and the computer is running great, except that Time Machine didn't reinstall my virtual machine. Unfortunately, the last time I used my Windows 7 in Fusion, I just paused it, and apparently this is not good for reinstalling my virtual machine from a Time Machine backup.

Does anyone have any idea how I can get this up and running again? I have no other backups or snapshots as I figured that backing up my whole computer would also properly back up my virtual machine.

Right now, when I try to open up the virtual machine it says that my Virtual Disk.vmdk is not found and when I try to restore that exact file, of which I have a copy in my Time Machine, it won't let me, saying error -36, some data can't be read or written.

Best Answer

If you PAUSED the virtual machine, it will still be on but "paused", its state is held in memory. The virtual disks could be in an intermediate state (they actually could be in the middle of writing out several block to the hard disk and paused in the middle). If you SUSPENDED the virtual machine it would be closed (its current state is stored on disk in the virtual machine) and you can get a good backup. If you did a PAUSE I would think the images would be ok except it would be the same as turning off a Windows machine in the middle of it running. You might have corrupt disks.

When you backup with time machine you need to be careful about having open VM's (or any application for that matter that holds files open). I usually manually use time machine and make sure all application are closed for the day before starting the time machine backup. I have never had a problem restoring VM's.

Possible solutions to restoring the virtual machine in question. Did you actually try to restore the individual files in the VM? Use restore to a different location. You have to select the VM and CTRL-Click and select show package contents to see the full contents of the VM. The files you are really concerned about are the ones ending in ".VMDK". This is the virtual disk. If you can restore all of these you can recreate the Virtual machine and attach the ".VMDK" files to that machine.

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