Server 2012R2 VMware Guest Customization (Sysprep) not starting

After deploying a Server 2012 R2 from a template, the VMware guest customization (sysprep) fails to start.

In the events (vSphere Web Client 5.5/VM/Monitor/Events) of the new deployed VM I found the following error:

“An error occurred while customizing <VM>. Customization log located at C:\Windows\Temp\vmware-imc\ <NO LOG> in the guest OS.”

Unfortunately there was really no log in the given path…

As I have used the template several times before, I checked the history of the template. Beside a number of new windows patches the last change was an upgrade of the VMware Tools.

So I decided to uninstall the VMware tools and install them completely new.

Et voila – after this the guest customization was working as expected!


  1. Henrik

    Thank you!
    This solved my problem!! 🙂

  2. BL

    Thanks! Solved my problem on vSphere 6 U1b!

  3. MM

    I had the same problem after Upgrading to vSphere 6.0 U1b.
    The tools were upgraded and sysprep didn’t start.
    Reinstalling the tools worked for me too.

  4. TB

    Just had the same issues with VM Version 11 templates utilized by our vRA 7 environment. vSphere 6 Update 1b as well. Your article helped me out big time, thanks for posting!

  5. gsterle

    VCenter 5.5 environment with a Windows 2012 R2 template. I was receiving the exact error as described above – found in the Vcenter event log for the newly created server. Customization script would not execute. I converted the template to a VM, uninstalled the VMTools, rebooted, Reinstalled the VMTools and converted back to a template. I deployed a new VM from the template and the customization script ran as expected. I appreciate that you took the time to post this. Thanks

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