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Shrinking VMs

Posted on 2014-09-05
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Last Modified: 2014-09-29
I need soma assistance with shrinking existing VMs. It seems it is the containers that hold all the VM components that is not able to be shrunk due to data blocks that can't be moved. For example: I have a Windows 7 VM that is 300 GB in size but there is actually 187 GB of free space on the virtual HDD. The HyperV host is a Windows Server 2012 RS and I use the HYper-V Manager. Most of the oversized VM were created from cloning one of the original existing machines. Any thoughts?
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Question by:DevilDoc325
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by:becraig
becraig earned 200 total points
ID: 40306784
Shrinking a virtual hard disk

As expected, when you shrink a virtual hard disk, the virtual hard disk capacity is decreased. However, there is a limit to amount of disk space that can be adjusted when you shrink a virtual hard disk. That limit is defined by the size of the volume that is currently in use by the virtual machine. The Hyper-V Manager user interface shows the minimum disk size available for shrinking a virtual hard disk.

If you want to shrink the size of the virtual hard disk below the size of the currently used volume within the virtual machine, you must first use Disk Manager in the operating system of the virtual machine to shrink the volume. After that is complete, you can reduce the size of the virtual hard disk.

Instructions on shrinking the disk in the OS:
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc731894.aspx
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE) earned 300 total points
ID: 40306787
another method, is to create a new virtual disk of the correct (shrunk size).

and then use a Cloning tool (e.g. clonezilla) to clone the partition from disk to disk, and then remove the original disk.
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by:DevilDoc325
ID: 40309876
Thanks Andrew and becraig. I will be working on this and I will let you know my results.
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by:DevilDoc325
ID: 40349774
Both solution would work and I appreciate the guidance. I am using WDS on a Server 2012 R2 to create and deploy the correctly sized images and simplify future deployments.  I am creating a new base image and basically cloning old systems.
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