Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The vmware-usbarbitrator binary closes itself with "Pipe unexpectedly closed."

The binary closes itself after around 5 seconds. If run directly from the terminal it shows the following:
# vmware-usbarbitrator
Pipe unexpectedly closed.

The following command only shows the following:
# vmware-usbarbitrator --info -f
VTHREAD initialize main thread 2 "usbArb" pid 7554

This is caused by an empty /etc/arch-release (owned by filesystem).
To fix it, add a version string to /etc/arch-release in the form of <year>.<month>(.<day>) (e.g. 2013.03.01).

I have added this fix to ArchWiki, the official Arch Linux Wiki where more troubleshooting information is available.

Update (2013/04/17):
I have also added the AUR package vmware-usbarbitrator, which provides a systemd service to automatically run VMware-USBArbitrator on computer startup. This systemd service has now been integrated into a single, feature-complete package: vmware-patch.