When you say "When I run the appliance for the first time after a host boot" does that mean that once you get DHCP working that you can then reboot the TKL guest and it keeps working every time?
Also perhaps you could try Ubuntu 10.04 Server under the same circumstance and compare.
In case you weren't already aware, the TKL v11.x appliances are heavily based on Ubuntu 10.04. If Ubuntu acts the same then it's an upstream and/or VMware issue (and you may just need to workaround by using a static IP). Otherwise it would suggest the problem is a consequence of TKL specific customisations. It may still require a workaround in the short term but probably a better chance of a fix.
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