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I recently experienced an issue when installing Debian 7 into VMWare whereby Gnome 3 would fallback to 2D mode. I managed to resolving this by doing the following:
- Right click on the VM. Go to Settings -> Hardware -> Display and check “Accelerate 3D graphics
- Power the virtual machine on and if you haven’t already install VMWare Tools. VMWare offers a useful guide for doing this if you’re unsure: https://www.vmware.com/support/ws55/doc/ws_newguest_tools_linux.html
- Once you’ve confirmed VMWare Tools has been installed and working successfully, open up a terminal and run the following commands:
sudo apt-get install libxatracker-dev sudo apt-get build-dep xserver-xorg-video-vmware apt-get source xserver-xorg-video-vmware -b rm -rf xserver*
- Once complete log out and back if for the changes to come into effect.