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Unable to delete or create a virtual machine in VMware ACE, Player, Server, or Workstation (1008434)

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  • Cannot remove a virtual machine.
  • When you attempt to use the VMware application interface to delete an existing virtual machine it fails.
  • Clicking Delete from Disk does not remove the virtual machine.
  • Creating a new virtual machine fails to complete.
  • The New Virtual Machine wizard fails to complete.
  • When creating a new virtual machine or virtual disk file, it fails with a write error or out of space error.


This article addresses issues that can prevent you from deleting a virtual machine.
Note: This article will help when you have issues with creating a virtual machine.


Each step below provides instructions and a link to a document, for performing the step and taking corrective action as necessary. The steps are ordered in the most appropriate sequence to isolate the issue and to identify the proper resolution. They are also ordered in the most appropriate sequence to minimize data loss. After completing each step, try creating or deleting the virtual machine again. Work through each troubleshooting step in order.

Note: If you are trying to create a virtual machine (as opposed to deleting one), skip steps 1 and 2.

  1. Confirm that the virtual machine is powered off. In the case of VMware Server, the virtual machine may be in use by another user. For more information, see Investigating if a hosted virtual machine is powered on (1003844).
  2. Locate the virtual machine's files and confirm that the files were not already deleted. For assistance with locating the files, see Locating a hosted virtual machine's files (1003880).
  3. Confirm that the destination folder or directory is accessible by the user. For more information, see Verifying that hosted virtual machine storage is accessible (1003858).
  4. Check the file permissions and attributes and verify that the users have enough rights to perform the operation. These require more rights than simply running the virtual machine. The user must have write privileges on all the files in the virtual machine folder. Generally, the permissions on virtual machine files follow the permissions set on the file system location hosting the files.
  5. Verify that none of the virtual machine's resources (or the resources that would be used by the virtual machine) are in use by something else. For more information, see Investigating busy hosted virtual machine files (1003849).
  6. Verify there are no problems with the file system by performing a disk check on your hard drives. For more information, see Performing a disk check (1004003).
If the issue continues to exist after trying the steps in this article:

See Also

This Article Replaces


Update History

01/20/2011 - Streamlined steps and clarified necessary permissions. 09/05/2013 - added WKS 10 and Player 6 to the product version. 02/12/2014 - Updated for Workstation 11.x 02/12/2014 - Updated for Player 7.x

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