vmware tools install (or vmware-config-tools.pl) hangs after X config

I was updating vmware-tools on some old Linux installations of ours, using a tarball I downloaded from VMware. Once I unzipped the tarball, I ran the installer and told it to take the defaults:
./vmware-install.pl -d

Got to one machine in particular and it hung right after this text:
X is running fine with the new config file

Checked the processes and it seemed “mkinitrd --help” was holding things up. Killed it (just to see what happened) and another “mkinitrd” came up that wanted to build for the installed kernel. But that also hung. Killed the second “mkinitrd” and it warned me about not having a proper initrd and all the horrible things that might happen in life if I rebooted with this botched boot configuration.

So I ran vmware-config-tools.pl manually, then I ran strace on that process, and it occasionally did a call-out to an old AD/LDAP server of ours that is deprecated. What the heck? Also saw it read from /etc/ldap.conf as it did this.

So I killed the config script and moved /etc/ldap.conf to /etc/oldldap.conf. Re-ran the installer, and “whee” it all worked.

Didn’t feel like digging into it further, but I did get the tools installed and configured.


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