VMware Player

VMware Player - Taking ownership of this virtual machine failed

After Windows 8.1 had performed an unscheduled reboot, I was greeted with the following error message when trying to start up a virtual machine in VMware Player: This virtual machine appears to be in use. If this virtual machine is not in use, press the “Take Ownership” button to obtain ownership of it. Otherwise, press the “Cancel” button to avoid damaging it. VMware Player- Taking ownership failed.