As it is known, VMWare Fusion is able to launch a Boot Camp drive as a VM - which is really handy in many situations.

But since my system is a tripple-booting one, I decided to shift and reshape my partition table a little bit around to allow me a "Share HD" partition, with which I can share files between Mac, Windows and Linux, as it is a FAT32 partition. For instance, I can drop my Dropbox folder on there and not need to worry about duplicates.

That works as expected. But only untill I launch VMWare and tell it to run my Boot Camp "VM". Then it unmounts not just the "Windows HD" but ALSO the "Share HD". My guess? Because it literally can.

The drive looks like this:

   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
   0:      GUID_partition_scheme                        *1.0 TB     disk0
   1:                        EFI EFI                     209.7 MB   disk0s1
   2:                  Apple_HFS Macintosh HD            750.0 GB   disk0s2
   3:       Microsoft Basic Data Windows HD              157.3 GB   disk0s3
   4:       Microsoft Basic Data SHARE HD                93.1 GB    disk0s4

And as you can notice, there are two partitions with "Microsoft Basic Data". The first is NTFS, the second Fat32.

VMWare kindly ignores the EFI partition, skips the Mac HD - would be strange if it didn't... - but then finds two partitions which it both knows how to handle. So it unmounts them from my mac and "virtualizes" them, effectively turning my little Share HD into a goner. Because VMWare, unlike Parallels, can not make the partition available again to my Mac! So it is "stuck" in the VM.

So I thought, maybe if I edited the disk directives, I could cheat the Share HD out of business. Now, this is what my "Boot Camp.vmdk" looks like:

# Disk DescriptorFile

# Extent description
RW 34 FLAT "Boot Camp-pt.vmdk" 0
RDONLY 6 FLAT "/dev/disk0" 34 partitionUUID @disk:diskModel=APPLE|20SSD|20SM1024F,diskSerialNumber=S1K6NYAF813843,diskSize=1000555581440
RW 409600 FLAT "/dev/disk0s1" 0 partitionUUID @partition:diskModel=APPLE|20SSD|20SM1024F,diskSerialNumber=S1K6NYAF813843,diskSize=1000555581440,partSize=209715200,partOffset=20480,partMediaUUID=CFDDAF8E-4D1D-4F57-9C46-843454CB2A3F,partVolumeUUID=0E239BC6-F960-3107-89CF-1C97F78BB46B
RW 1464843744 ZERO 
RW 504 ZERO 
RW 307200000 FLAT "/dev/disk0s3" 0 partitionUUID @partition:diskModel=APPLE|20SSD|20SM1024F,diskSerialNumber=S1K6NYAF813843,diskSize=1000555581440,partSize=157286400000,partOffset=750209990656,partMediaUUID=44AD0F2A-0D3F-4AE3-B7C5-5AD933958C03,partVolumeUUID=6EC86E86-4F90-4A14-8A93-4C753E7C0165
RW 181755904 FLAT "/dev/disk0s4" 0 partitionUUID @partition:diskModel=APPLE|20SSD|20SM1024F,diskSerialNumber=S1K6NYAF813843,diskSize=1000555581440,partSize=93059022848,partOffset=907496390656,partMediaUUID=5C128853-CCC2-471D-8B07-A4FF98C00969,partVolumeUUID=A6DA7C25-15FD-3966-8F86-D473AF3245C1
RW 295 ZERO 
RW 33 FLAT "Boot Camp-pt.vmdk" 34

# The Disk Data Base 

ddb.adapterType = "ide"
ddb.geometry.biosCylinders = "1024"
ddb.geometry.biosHeads = "255"
ddb.geometry.biosSectors = "63"
ddb.geometry.cylinders = "16383"
ddb.geometry.heads = "16"
ddb.geometry.sectors = "63"
ddb.longContentID = "b999ebb339b3d11760123bd78ba1470a"
ddb.toolsVersion = "9507"
ddb.uuid = "60 00 C2 90 19 25 e5 53-fe fe 8c 45 f8 0d 55 ff"
ddb.virtualHWVersion = "11"

I totally noticed that my Share HD (disk0s4) was in there! Horray, this must be the virtual partition table.

But how do I edit it?

Can anyone provide me with the help to properly edit the definition so that VMWare no longer absorbs my Share HD too?

Thanks in advance and kind regards - and, a good day. :)


Change RW to RDONLY. At least it worked for me: RW 181755904 FLAT "/dev/disk0s4" 0 partitionUUID to RDONLY 181755904 FLAT "/dev/disk0s4" 0 partitionUUID good luck!

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