VMWare resolution won't switch on KDE - will on Gnome

I am new to Manjaro. I want to fully test/exercise Manjaro KDE 64bit in a VMWare guest on a Windows 10 host. Using Windows 10 Pro (build 18363 - fully updated as of today), VMWare Workstation Player 15.5.1 build 15018445 (latest as of today). Nvidia drivers 441.66. I have 32gb of physical ram, over 600gb free diskspace. I've allocated 5gb to the VM, 1 or 2gb to the video display. Other than that it is exactly the default image settings from VMWare that work with Ubuntu and Mint...

I installed KDE Plasma 18.1.4 (verified GPG signature). All went well. After the install I verified that open-vm-tools is present and running.

Unlike all the other distros I have tried I cannot resize the VM window to increase the resolution. Nothing happens. Entering fullscreen simply displays 800x600 centered. If I try to change display settings the resolution will change to what I set momentarily and then snap back.

As I describe later, I do not believe this is an issue specific to Manjaro's implementation of KDE or open-vm-tools but I'm asking here for guidance.

I've searched the forums and generally "googled". There are issues and workarounds that sound similar, but no suggestions have worked. Someone on these forums suggested starting and stopping the services:

systemctl stop vmtoolsd.service
systemctl start vmtoolsd.service

Doing so does allow me to manually resize the window. Trying to change the KDE display settings does nothing. On a system restart the window is back to 800x600.

I've tried uninstalling/reinstalling open-vm-tools, using arandr, starting a brand new virtual machine and reinstalling, increasing the virtual display RAM.

After hours of trying I decided to try Manjaro Gnome 18.1.4. Identical VM settings. It works exactly as it should immediately after an install. I don't have to do anything.

To try to isolate if it was a Manjaro issue, I downloaded the Kubuntu image and it behaves exactly like Manjaro KDE 18.1.14. It doesn't work.

So it looks like a KDE issue and not specific to Manjaro. Manjaro KDE is the distro I want to test and hopefully eventually use on another physical computer.

Can anyone provide any further direction? Have reported to KDE as well.

Keep in mind this is with fully updated software, immediately after install (both before and after the first system update). It happens before I do/change anything. All defaults.


Try VirtualBox - be sure to read

Section 3, 6 and 8

Thanks but Virtualbox isn't an option for me. I have several OSes working on VMware and can't switch back and forth - and Windows won't let you have both functional at the same time. I had evaluated Virtualbox but found it less stable and significantly slower video and disk I/O.

Take a look at the last few posts of this thread:

Thanks dalto, This post is the advice I described trying starting/restarting services. It doesn't work. I tried the other suggestions throughout that post. I'm pretty certain the issues described have similar symptoms but are different. The problem doesn't seem to have anything to do with open-vm-tools or why would the same everything else work in Gnome?

I don't know the answer to your question but a while ago(6+ months ago) I lost the ability to manually resize guests on plasma from kde. It seems to impact any distro that uses a newer version of kde.

However, since auto-resizing the guest works fine, it hasn't been a major issue for me. Instead of setting a resolution by hand, I just size the vmware how I want it and let the resolution stretch into it.

yeah "live with it" is an option... but like living with an itch you can't scratch. Thanks again dalto.

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Good luck in your search. If you do find a solution, please post back and let us know what it is.

I've figured a few things out I've not seen posted anywhere so I will conclude this thread with a way that works for me. I've seen posts all over with people that gave up on almost any distro with KDE plasma in a VMWare guest.

tl;dr - switch to Wayland. I am not well versed in the merits/deficits of using Wayland but in my case it allows everything to work correctly using KDE (Kubuntu and Manjaro plasma anyway) in a VM guest.

Install the package plasma-wayland-session. Log out. At the bottom of the default log in screen, there's a menu called "Desktop Session". Select Plasma (Wayland) there and login. As a precaution, you should turn off automatic login until you verify it works correctly.

If it all works in the GUI, run Login Screen (SDDM). On the Advanced page change Auto login to reflect the Wayland session.

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Thank you!
I use kde on manjaro on a VMware virtual machine.
With last kde update the theme i use go mad, transparency go mad.
Your solution worked for me.
Thanks again

In my case what worked was to edit /etc/mkinitcpio.conf and comment out the old MODULES, replacing it:

MODULES=(vsock vmw_vsock_vmci_transport vmw_balloon vmw_vmci vmwgfx)

I then regenerated the initramfs simply by doing an upgrade, and re-booted.

I really hated wayland on KDE, but now I have to say I'm impressed this one was the solution to the problem ! Chapeau !

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