I'm having a very tricky problem with some of my VM sessions being unable to reach the Internet or even ping the gateway. I have just set up a new VM Workstation (7) on a W2K8 64bit server (I'll be converting to ESXI 4 once I can find a decent book on it, so for the meanwhile I use workstation). I have imported a number of VM's and setup some new ones on the server. In short the problem with some of the VM's being unable to reach the Internet is that they can't reach the gateway. I've looking at a number of things and can pretty safely rule out the following:
Switch, Router, DHCP Server, DNS, Client IP configuration, Routes and typos.
The problem is that some of the new clients cannot reach the gateway if their IP address is hardcoded, they can't even ping it by IP address. That rules out DNS and DHCP. Now, if I allow them to get their IP address by DHCP they can reach the gateway and Internet without issue. The interesting thing on this, is that this behavior occurs even if I leave the DNS information hardcoded under TCP/IP settings. It doesn't work unless the IP and gateway are handed out by DHCP even though the same information IP info is being used by the host.
Fundamentally from the standpoint of the clients, they are trying to reach the exact same gateway using the exact same IP information regardless of whether they are hardcoded or assigned by DHCP. Here's an example of one client.
IP Address 192.168.7.66 - Subnet Mask 255.255.255.0 - Gateway 192.168.7.254 - DNS1 192.168.7.44 - DNS2 192.168.7.254.
The issue occurs across six different Microsoft operating systems, Windows 7 and Windows 2008 variants all have the issue. My W2K3, XP, Vista and W98 clients all work without issue with hardcoded IP addresses. I have tried things like rearranging the DNS order, flushing DNS and so on. It's not a routing or switch issue as the clients can work just fine if they get their IP by DHCP. It's not a parameter issue as the exact same parameters are handed out by DHCP as I plug in by hand. It's not a DNS issue as clients cant reach other clients even with IP addresses only.
I have run a tracert to the gateway by IP address and it times out on the very first hop before failing on hop3 with destination host unreachable. If I get the IP address by DHCP the tracert finds the gateway (and Internet) without issue. I have read a few other posts online in forums talking about this problem randomly occurring over the years in other VM versions as well, so I suspect some kind of long standing bug. Does anyone have any ideas on this? Is it possibly a bug with Windows 7 and W2K clients under VM?