I am Dale Hayter, a Microsoft and VMware certified Technical Consultant.

My blog has been built up over the years from my experience of working on an IT helpdesk and also from being out on-site.

Using VMware – Run trial software indefinitely without registration.

I’ve been playing round with VMware Workstation recently. I’ve found a neat trick that you can do with it which could allow you to run trial software indefinitely without registering it. I suppose this could also be used for Beta’s of windows etc. This should also work on Vmware ESX, Workstation and Vmware Server. (Vmware Server is Free)


In order to do it you would do the following :

– Install your flavour of windows in your vmware product.
– Install VMware tools
– Disable Windows Time Sync
– Power off the Virtual Machine
– Navigate to the folder where the Virtual Machine is stored.
– Open the .vmx file in notepad
– Add the following lines to the end of the file.

rtc.startTime = "1230800400"
tools.syncTime = "FALSE"
time.synchronize.continue = "FALSE"
time.synchronize.restore = "FALSE"
time.synchronize.resume.disk = "FALSE"
time.synchronize.shrink = "FALSE"
time.synchronize.tools.startup = "FALSE"

– Power on the VM
– Install your trial software
– Power off the VM
– Edit the .vmx file
– Change the following lines

rtc.startTime = "1230800400"
rtc.startTime = "1230886800"

– Power on your VM
– Start using your machine and software.

Basically the way that this works is that everytime you power on your Virtual machine, the date and time of it gets set to 2nd Jan, so you will always be on day 1 of your trial.

Obviously this might break some softwares t&c’s so be careful. Proof of concept really.