Error while trying to getstate of VM

Recently a VM on a ESX host (version 2.5.3) refused to power on.

From the Service Console i tried to getstate:

vmware-cmd <.vmx-file> getstate

but all I got was an error:

/usr/bin/vmware-cmd: Could not connect to VM <.vmx-file>
  (VMControl error -14: Unexpected response from vmware-authd: Error connecting to /usr/lib/vmware/bin/vmware-vmx process.)

As it turned out the problem was that an old process was still existing and it was convinced it was running the VM already, which it was not.

# grep -r ".vmx" /proc/vmware/

extract the VM’s PID from the output and

# kill -9 <PID>

# vmware-cmd <.vmx-file> getstate

should now produce a more reasonable output. If you want to power on the VM da a:

# vmware-cmd <.vmx-file> start

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