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Vmware Workstation vm3dmp.sys BSOD with XmlSpy

Alastair Grant | Fri 19 Mar 2021

I've been receiving a Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) crash when trying to create a new document with XmlSpy 2020 on a virtual machine running on VMWare Workstation 16.

Stop code: PFN SHARE COUNT
What failed: vm3dmp.sys

The problem only started occurring for me when I upgraded the hardware level of the virtual machine to be compatible with VMWare Workstation 16, where it was previously set to 15.  Downgrading the VM compatibility to 15 resolved the issue, I noted ESXi 7 compatibility also cause the issue.  It seems that this problem also effects VMWare Fusion too.

Whilst I'm happy for the time being running on the older hardware compatibility, another suggested workaround is to add the following configuration in the VM's VMX file:

guestInfo.svga.wddm.enableGDIHW=FALSE

I haven't tried this myself.  I assume this command disabled hardware acceleration for the Windows GDI subsystem, which is going to likely hit performance.

Update, new driver

There is a new graphics driver available from Windows Update (v 8.17.2.14), but not currently on the published set of VMWare Tools that seems to solve the problem.  I was unaware until now that VMware released drivers ahead of VMWare Tools being updated.  So as with physical computers, it's worth checking to see if there is a driver update for troublesome components through Device Manager.

 

Breaking from the voyeuristic norms of the Internet, any comments can be made in private by contacting me.

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