Removing VMware Ghost Adapters

This can occur when you change a network connection’s TCP/IP configuration from DHCP to a static IP address if:
  • You have added and removed network adapters multiple times
  • You have upgraded VMware virtual network adapters. This can also include updating the virtual machine hardware version and/or upgrading the version of VMware Tools.

This issue occurs if a network adapter with the same IP address is in the windows registry but is hidden in the Device Manager (My Computer > Properties > Hardware > Device Manager). This hidden adapter is called a ghosted network adapter.

Using the Show hidden devices option in the Device Manager (View > Show hidden devices) does not always show the old virtual NIC (ghosted adapter) to which that IP Address is assigned.

To uninstall the ghosted network adapter from the registry:
  1. At the command prompt, run this command:
    set devmgr_show_nonpresent_devices=1
  2. Start the Device Manager by running this command from the same command prompt:
    start devmgmt.msc
  3. Click View > Show Hidden Devices.
  4. Expand the Network Adapters tree (click the plus sign next to the Network adapters entry).
  5. Right-click the dimmed network adapter, then click Uninstall.
  6. Once all of the grayed out NICs are uninstalled, assign the IP address to the virtual NIC.
  7. Close the Device Manager.

    A reboot may be necessary to apply the changes


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