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Accessing the BIOS when the POST screen clears too quickly (1004129)

Purpose

This article assists you in gaining access to the virtual machine's BIOS options in the event that it passes too quickly to interact with the screen.

Resolution

To make it easier to access the BIOS setup screen, edit the virtual machine's configuration (.vmx) and add or edit one of these options:

  • bios.forceSetupOnce = "TRUE"

    This forces entry to the BIOS setup at startup.

  • bios.bootDelay = "xxxx"

    This adds a delay to the initial POST screen, showing it for longer and giving you more time to access the BIOS setup, where xxxx is the number of milliseconds to show the POST screen. (There are 1000 milliseconds in a second.) The maximum value for the boot delay is 10000 milliseconds or 10 seconds.

Fusion

To make changes to the .vmx (virtual machine configuration file):

  1. Shutdown the virtual machine.
  2. Edit your .vmx file to include one of the two options above. For more information, see Editing the .vmx file for your Fusion virtual machine (1014782).

Player

To make changes to the .vmx (virtual machine configuration file):
  1. Shut down the virtual machine.
  2. Edit the .vmx file to add one of the two options above. For more information on editing a .vmx file, see Tips for editing a .vmx file (1714).

ESXi/ESX

To make changes to the configuration file:

  1. Shutdown the virtual machine.
  2. Connect to the service console of the ESX host.
  3. Enter this command to unregister the virtual machine you want to modify:

    vmware-cmd -s unregister /vmfs/volumes/VMname/vm.vmx

    where VMname and vm.vmx are the working directory and virtual machine configuration file name on your system.

    Note: A return status of 1 indicates the virtual machine was unregistered successfully.

  4. Modify the virtual machine's configuration file using either of the options detailed above.
  5. Type the following command to register the virtual machine:

    vmware-cmd -s register /vmfs/volumes/VMname/vm.vmx

    where VMname and vm.vmx are the working directory and virtual machine configuration file name on your system.

    Note: A return status of 1 signals the virtual machine was registered successfully.

vCenter Server/VirtualCenter

To make these changes using the graphical interface:

  1. Connect to vCenter Server/VirtualCenter using the VMware Infrastructure/vSphere Client.
  2. Right-click on the virtual machine you want to edit in the Inventory view.
  3. Click Edit Settings > Options > Boot Options.
  4. Set the Power-on Boot Delay or select Force BIOS Setup.

Workstation 7.x and later

To enter the BIOS setup for the guest operating system, click VM > Power > Power On to BIOS.

Additional Information

See Also

Update History

09/06/2013 - Added Workstation 10, Fusion 5 and 6, Player 3.X to 6.X to the Product Version.

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