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VMWARE working directory options

Posted on 2007-11-28
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Last Modified: 2008-03-10
Hello,

I have a question regarding the working directory in VMWARE.  Here is the background:

I have a Windows 2003 server hosting a virtual SBS 2003 and another virtual instance of 2003.  I allocated all disk space to both virtual machines when I created then (as opposed to the 2GB option).  I originally set both machines working directory to use partitions that I created specifically for these machines (c: - host partition, f: - SBS partition, g: - 2003 partion).  Both f: and g: (after allocating all disk space to the virtual machine ((the *-flat. vmdk)) have only 4 GB free space on each.  A couple of weeks ago I ran out of space on the f: drive while attempting to make a snapshot:

http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Server/SBS_Small_Business_Server/Q_22940275.html

To deal with this I changed the working directory of the virtual server (as I mistakenly thought this would only affect where the snapshot is kept).  After a short period of time I noticed that the new location is being filled up with vmdk files (*-000001.vmdk, *-000002.vmdk, etc).  The new folder (on the c: drive) is filling up so I wanted to get some feedback on the best course of action.

Based on other questions being asked in the VMWARE area I understand that *-000001.vmdk files are the files that are currently being used.  So if I understand correctly what happened was that by redirecting my working directory I also redirected the original vmdk file which then incremented itself based on the work I was doing in the virtual machine.  I would like to go back to using the original f: drive as the working partition (and the original vmdk file) BUT have the snapshot stored elsewhere (I don't have the room for it in the f; drive).  The separtaion of these two does not seem possible (at least in the free version).   My two questions are:

1) Can you change the working directory back to use the original vmdk file?
2) what is the purpose of the *flat.vmdk file?   This is the biggest file in the f: and g: drive, yet both virtual  machines also create vmdk files as well.  I thought that by alocating space when i create the file that will be all the space I would need.

Any input would be appreciated.

Cheers,

Todd

PS I found this article :  http://www.vmwarez.com/2006/11/beware-long-snapshot.html   Is this a contirbutor?
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Question by:GVC_Admin
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Hello,

The latest update is that link at the bottom of the question has pointed me in the right direction.  It appears that if you leave a snapshot on the system (at least in the free version) it will be incremented continuously based on changes until you run out of room.  The theory goes that once you delete these snapshots, the *.000001.vmdk files will also be removed and you will go back to your original .vmdk file, which is a pointer to the *-flat.vmdk virtual disk (if I am wrong please let me know).  My issue it appears is that since I let the snapshots get so big the vm server is timing out when it tries to clear out the incremented vmdk files.  

Anyways, if anyone has any thoughts I would be happy to hear them.

Cheers
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