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VMWare ESX 3.5 Snapshot removal

Posted on 2011-09-22
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
I need some help here. I need to free up some space and I was looking at the snapshots and I find this. (See Attached screenshot).

Snapshots
2nd VM snapshot
With all of these snapshots in place, how do I safely remove these without adversely affecting the VM? I want to be sure that I am not deleting something that will break the VM. This is on a single host, no HA or any other storage options currently. I have two VM's with the same issue.

ESX 3.5

Thanks.
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Question by:James H
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6 Comments
 
LVL 124

Assisted Solution

by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 2000 total points
ID: 36583388
What you have done is not really supported, and to Delete and Committ the Snapshot is likely to take many hours.

If you are Brave, and have the disk space, patience, and time, you could hit Delete Snapshot. But it is going to take many hours to complete.

Personally I would either use the Clone option in vCenter if availablke, to Clone out the VM, or Create a v2v to a different datastore or the same datastore.

VMware Converter Standlonalone 4.3 or 5.0.

Download VMware vCenter Converter here
http://downloads.vmware.com/d/info/datacenter_downloads/vmware_vcenter_converter_standalone/4_0

VMware vCenter Converter Standalone 4.x Documentation
http://www.vmware.com/support/pubs/converter_pubs.html
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LVL 17

Author Comment

by:James H
ID: 36583465
It wasn't me that did this. I would have never used snapshots like this, but I am stuck with this environment for now until I can clean it up.

I can't do V2V as there is barely any space left on the datastore (21 GB out of 400 GB).
I was looking to P2V a PC that is on its last legs but it seems like I will have to wait until I can solve this issue.

There is no vCenter as the license doesn't include this.

So, do I have any other options?
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LVL 124

Accepted Solution

by:
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 2000 total points
ID: 36583508
You can V2V, off the server to a Workstation or Share.

YOU do not have enough space to DELETE the snapshot so DO NOT DO IT!

I would use vConverter to Convert and Export the Server to a UNC Share/Workstation etc

(I would do it three times, to make sure you have a copy), and then Delete the VM, and then V2V Back to the host, with no snapshots.
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LVL 24

Expert Comment

by:Luciano Patrão
ID: 36583899
Hi

With all this snapshots, I am sure that the only option is use VMware Converter.

So since you do not have free space and/or backups of this, you should use VMware vConverter and convert another disk as a Workstation VM.

Jail
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:Bill_Fleury
ID: 36589758
Depending on how critical this server is, you could power it off and remove the snapshot.  Removing when powered off does not require additional space on the datastore.  Be aware this will take several hours if not days depending on the size of the original VMDK and how many changes there were in each snapshot.

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LVL 17

Author Closing Comment

by:James H
ID: 36708980
Thanks for the advice. I am getting a SAN in place to V2V those VM's and have a clean copy.
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