Barebone data:

  • virtualization: VMWare Workstation 6.5 (latest)
  • Host: Windows Server 2008 x64
  • Guest: Windows Server 2008 x86
  • Host network adapter: Ethernet (see comment)
  • Host network adapter: Wireless (see comment)
  • Guest ethernet network adapter 1: Bridged VMNet (automatic)
  • Guest ethernet network adapter 2: Host only VMNet

comment: my host has LAN and Wifi but only one at the same time. I'm either wired or wireless. Never both. So bridged connection on VM goes either via wire or air.

When I'm wirelessly connected on the host and I access internet within VM my connection just gets stalled (not dropped). It doesn't experience any timeout whatsoever, it just stops downloading/communicating. For instance: I start downloading a file with a browser (IE/FF/CR doesn't matter) and I have to pause/restart download when speed drops to 0. I could wait indefinitely but connection won't pick-up automatically.

What did I miss in my network configuration?

Update 1

I've tested this in various combinations. This works fine when host is connected via Ethernet. But when host is connected via Wifi, the connection on the guest works as previously described. It connects fine. It gets a valid IP from DHCP... Everything is cool as long as you don't start doing some intensive network traffic (ie. download a 2MB file) In this case it starts downloading and stops after a while. Speed just drops to 0B/s... Sometimes it picks up back, sometimes it doesn't. Connection still stays and works. I can ping around with no problem.

  • Is VMWare tools installed? – MDMarra Aug 12 '09 at 0:36
  • yes VMWare Tools are installed. – Robert Koritnik Aug 12 '09 at 0:52

Your wireless card is probably interfering with the application software.

  1. Disable the Wired NIC and does it happen.?
  2. Replace the wireless card.

These steps must be completed before any more investigations can be carried out so as not to waste time.


Not 100% sure as you said that it does actually start, but as you have two NICs, I would just check that the ip settings are not conflicting.

Also, make sure you ticked Bridged for the NIC and not a Bridged VMNet connection under custom.

If I was you, right now I would do the following to test.

  • Take a snapshot called test
  • Remove NIC2
  • Set NIC1 to Bridged mode
  • Test internet.

If this works, great, it was a problem with having multiple nics... You can either troubleshoot yourself or ask here as this is a general networking issue.

If it does not work, then it is clearly an actual problem with VMware (providing you test and make sure these sites work on the host). Restore the snapshot you took above to undo the changed I said.

  • --1. It's set to bridged, and not Custom VMNet bridge (usually VMNet0) --2. I use the "Host-only" NIC2 only for RDP so it works faster (communicates inside my computer and not over to the router) --Q: Is it possible to set priority for internet connection? Maybe it's trying to auto switch internet NIC, because NIC2 is faster than NIC1 (I guess)? – Robert Koritnik Aug 12 '09 at 10:06
  • why -1? Did you even try what I said? You should not loose anything as you are taking a snapshot. This is nothing to do with routing because it is faster but actual network routing / ip issues. – William Hilsum Aug 12 '09 at 13:01
  • @Wil: I didn't downwote your answer. :) I was just trying to make bullet points visible with these -- signs. Sorry about that. I don't think snapshot is needed, since I'm not changing anything within VM. all these things are VM settings not software on them. – Robert Koritnik Aug 12 '09 at 13:52
  • Oh sorry! Just a bit over sensitive, I helped someone before and they down voted me despite my answer being correct, just thought they couldn't handle the truth... Anyway, the snapshot isn't for the files but the settings. It will allow you to delete one of the nics and test my theory about routing then if it doesn't work, restore and you get all the settings back to before I helped! – William Hilsum Aug 12 '09 at 14:24
  • Tested. No change. Check my "Update 1" in the question. – Robert Koritnik Aug 20 '09 at 12:25

What does route show while it's working versus not working?

Anything in the logs showing up?

What does wireshark show for traffic flow?

  • can you elaborate on "route" a bit more? What do you mean by this and how to diagnose it? And which logs are you taking about? – Robert Koritnik Aug 12 '09 at 13:56
  • If you open a cmd prompt and type "route print" it tells you where your packets are being sent and on what interface. Logs are the Windows system and application logs to see if something is spitting an error there about the interface or anything to do with networking. – Bart Silverstrim Aug 12 '09 at 15:05
  • I know what logs are, but which ones would have to show any strange network activity? "route print" shows no strange data... – Robert Koritnik Aug 20 '09 at 16:21
  • the system or application logs could show things like interface problems, DHCP errors, name conflicts, etc. and when the network is stalled route should show you the gateway(s) being used. – Bart Silverstrim Aug 20 '09 at 18:00

Not really an answer to your question but I have to chime in here and state that if you are running Windows Server 2008 x64 why on earth are you using it to surf the net? Furthermore why are you installing third party browsers on a Windows Server intended for just that purpose - serving!

I hope you manage to sort out your issues with VMware networking (I've had these in the past myself) but you really should be using the server variant as a desktop client.

  • 1
    Uhm why? I have a dev machine in VM. It needs to be updated just as well as any other machine. I need to install certain software/libs/tools on it as well. Why downloading elsewhere and copying it there... The major drawback is with SVN clients hanging indefinitely when this happens. – Robert Koritnik Aug 12 '09 at 13:54
  • I don't like server product because it installs all kind of "crap" on machine. I don't want web console and apache web server etc. And more importantly: I need USB support in my VMs. – Robert Koritnik Aug 12 '09 at 13:55

I get the feeling this is not the issue, but have you talked to your network admins? Confirm port security is disabled on bother wired and wireless networks at your location. This was a huge pain for me until I figured it out. Also, I have never had Workstation successfully switch host adapters in Bridged Mode and the guest seamlessly keep network. What I mean is switching adapaters in a host OS on and off (since like you I had bridge auto-configure), and then ipconfig or ifconfig depending on OS. I had to restart the VMWare DHCP Service and NAT Service (in Windows) to get this working. It was so annoying I just wrote a script. Also helpful, create a different bridge vmnet adapters in the Guest OS: one separate for wired and wireless. Do not set them to auto of course. This helped me for a period on my laptop, which runs 6.5 as well.


I have the same issue with my configuration:

Host (Windows 7 / Server 2008 R2) and Guest (Ubuntu) running in VMware / VirtualBox with Dual WAN.

The Wireless interface is briged to the guest OS.

I even removed the default GW and changed the metric on the Wifi interface in the host OS to make sure the host traffic is not routed over WIFI.

Doing an IP-Lookup I can see that the host OS (using LAN) has a different IP than the guest OS (using WIFI bridged)

I think the problem is related to the fact that Windows prefers the LAN connections over WIFI even if you adjust the routing metrics / gateway config.

If you have traffic on the LAN connection it blocks / stalls the WIFI due to interface preference.

I assume you will not have this problem if you use two interfaces of the same type (2 X LAN or 2 X Wifi). Alternatively you could also try to use Linux as host OS.

If your Wifi interface is a USB stick you can attach the USB to the guest OS and this way you will have two independend network adapters.

Kind regards,


  • 1
    If it is bridged, the IP address should be different on the host OS network interface and the guest. That is by design, no? Basically, you tell VMWare to pretend two different interfaces physically exist (well, not exactly, but you get the idea), and traffic is forwarded to the guest virtualized network interface. – songei2f Feb 11 '11 at 15:17

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.