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QueryPerformanceCounter behaves improperly inside a virtual machine when /usepmtimer is used with some Windows HALs (1011714)

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A Windows guest may experience these symptoms:
  • QueryPerformanceCounter stays within a 4.7 second range, advancing at the correct rate for ~4.7 seconds, then jumping back 4.7 seconds
  • Applications stop responding 
  • Negative ping times


When /usepmtimer is specified in boot.ini for Windows 2003 and Windows XP SMP HALs, QueryPerformanceCounter does not behave properly. Instead of advancing monotonically, it advances correctly for 4.7 seconds, then jumps backward 4.7 seconds, repeating this in a loop endlessly.


This issue is resolved  for Windows 2003 in vSphere 5.0 Update 1. However, the issue still persists in Windows XP.
To work around this issue, avoid specifying /usepmtimer in the boot.ini file when using Windows 2003 or Windows XP with an SMP HAL.

Additional Information

For more information, see:
Note: The preceding links were correct as of June 21, 2013. If you find the link is broken, provide feedback and a VMware employee will update the link.

See Also

Update History

06/21/2013 - Added link to Microsoft Knowledge Base article 289022

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