July 10, 2016 · vmware

VMWARE Sound fix for Windows 95 / 98 / ME

I know Windows 95 is over 21 years old but I had some legacy software I wanted to try out. When using VMWARE Fusion or workstation there are well documented issues with the sound not working. All the guides I read just reported the same issue I got, they tried to download the drivers but got a blue screen. After much troubleshooting I realised the issue is down to a IRQ conflict.

blue screen

The first thing to do is to shut the virtual machine down. Open up the folder where the virtual machine is stored. Right click the Virtual Machine and click "Show package contents"

Show package

Within this folder will be a file called <machine name>.vmx - right click this file and edit it with a text editor. I used BBEdit in this example.

edit file

From here a file will appear. You need to look for the pci lines highlighted below and delete them:

PCI present

Now replace with the following lines, included below for easy copy and paste and demonstrated in the screen shot below:

pciBridge0.present = "false"
pciBridge1.present = "false"
pciBridge2.present = "false"
pciBridge3.present = "false"
pciBridge4.present = "false"
pciBridge5.present = "false"
pciBridge6.present = "false"
pciBridge7.present = "false"

correct lines

Save the file and start the virtual machine. A found new hardware box will appear, cancel it for now.

sound showing

Next install the sound drives using the tools from the creative website, you need the Sound Blaster PCI 128. The hardware will install and not blue screen, part way through you may be asked to reboot, press no and reboot when the setup has finished.

Drivers installing

Once the virtual machine reboots you should hear the welcome sound! The same principle should also work with Windows 98 and Millennium Edition just make sure you download the right drivers.

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