Hidden Hidden devices – part deux


What goes around comes around they say. This problem I wrote about more than 10 years ago and it still pops up today. In this previous post I explained how physical devices and their drives can be hidden by windows Рeven when the option to show hidden devices is chosen in device manager.  In this case Рmove the technology on 10 years and in a virtual environment the same problem manifests.

The background was during the migration of a virtual machine to a new infrastructure. Once the machine files were transferred and the virtual machine registered – the vm booted as expected. Next day the client mentioned that certain things that seemed related to DNS were erratic or not working.

A quick check later showed that the IP settings for its virtual card had changed from static to dhcp. Another machine moved in the same manner at the same time was unaffected. Then I noticed that the virtual network in this case a vmx net3 adapter was listed as vmxnet3 ethernet adapter 2. What happened the first ethernet adapter?

When the network settings¬† for this second adapter were corrected to the static address it should have had – the message “The IP address x.x.x.x you have entered us already assigned to another adapter …….. Do you want to remove the static IP configuration for the ABSENT adapter ?

Using device manager showed only the second adapter but my suspicion had been raised and using the same steps as before with physical device issues

At an elevated command prompt, type the following command , and then press ENTER:

set devmgr_show_nonpresent_devices=1

Type the following command at the same command prompt, and then press ENTER:

start devmgmt.msc

and we can see the missing adapter when we select show hidden devices – and therefore delete it.

Perhaps we will still be seeing this in 10 more years ? Hopefully not.