VHD expanding daily and now physical disk is going to be full

My VHD keeps expanding and the physical space is going to be full. I do not know what to do.

DIsk: Logical F: 300GB
HyperV disk: Dynamically expanding virtual hard disk
size: 250GB
Maximum size 250GB.

Now the vhd is 280GB.  I only have 14GB left. When i shutdown the VM, the host disk (F:) will have about 40GB left. After one hour later it will go back to 14GB because the VHD expands back to 280GB. Tomorrow it will expand further.

I really don't know what to do. please help. Urgent. It is an Exchange server.
Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

What is taking up the space on the VHD?  I use TreeSizeFree from Jam-software-com to identify where all the space went.
Justin EvansCommented:
where abouts have you stored the mail logs?  is it stored on this disk?  if so you could enable circular logging to reduce the space you are using.  after you have freed up the space do a Full Backup

this URL explains circular logging.


kind regards

Mohd Nasir Maideen SahibAuthor Commented:
I opened up the VM. It still has about 60GB storage out of the allocated size which is 250GB.

I am experiencing this on host level. inside VM storage space and all working just fine and normal.

It is the host. The VHD keeps expanding.
Making Bulk Changes to Active Directory

Watch this video to see how easy it is to make mass changes to Active Directory from an external text file without using complicated scripts.

Mohd Nasir Maideen SahibAuthor Commented:
Hi Justin. It is not in the VM level. In the VM space is healthy.

It is the host level. Seems like Windows is expanding the vhd for no reason???
R@f@r P@NC3RVirtualization SpecialistCommented:
Good afternoon,

First you must validate if there is a record that is constantly growing on the disk, at the Host level, how much space do you have available in the storage?

You can also try creating a new vhd in the host operating system, depending on the space you have available physically.

It also makes a backup of the data that is stored on the disk.

You can share a printer to help you better.

R@f@r P@NC3RVirtualization SpecialistCommented:
Good afternoon Mhod Nasir,

Could you validate the previous steps?

Another pregutna that VM where the disk grows constantly, has snapshot, remember that snapshot a take up a lot of space at the storage level, since they write all the information about the disk that you are taking the snapshot, since the original disk remains in reading mode .

If you have snapshot present, delete it and you can recover more space.
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
I've managed to control this sort of thing by shrinking the partition size within the VHD itself.  You can manually extend it if you need to, as you need to, until you get sufficient disk space so that you're not overcommitted.
R@f@r P@NC3RVirtualization SpecialistCommented:
Good afternoon Mhod Nasir,

I also think that you could convert the disk to a fixed size and not dynamic, so you would also avoid this type of problems, or reduce the partition.
Mohd Nasir Maideen SahibAuthor Commented:
Hi. I dont have space to convert to fixed disk.

the host (F: partition is 300GB) now the VHD is 280GB. If i were to convert it, the F: drive needs to have at least another 280GB correct?
Mohd Nasir Maideen SahibAuthor Commented:
Anyway.. this morning, the space decrease a little. from 14gb left. Now 28gb left. Im really not sure what is happening.

see screenshot.

R@f@r P@NC3RVirtualization SpecialistCommented:
Good Morning,

If correct, you need 280 GB.

Could you validate the same way on the disk as a record that is constantly growing?

Did you validate if the disk has a snapshot?

Perform a disk cleanup and then a defrag to recover the disk.

If the spy decreased this morning, it may be that there is a record on the disk that is growing daily.

I remain attentive to your comments.
Mohd Nasir Maideen SahibAuthor Commented:

1. disk confirmed has no snapshot
2. perform disk clean up and defrag on the HOST level or VM level?
3. I dont get you when you say spy decrease this morning. Sorry able to explain?
R@f@r P@NC3RVirtualization SpecialistCommented:

1-Ok, the vm does not have a snapshot, we already discard this part.

2-Cleaning and defragmentation can do both at the host and the vm, I recommend you do both.

What operating system does your physical host have?

3-I mean, where you indicate that the disk space decreased for no reason, validates the disk records, or may be temporary files that are occupying space needed.

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
Mohd Nasir Maideen SahibAuthor Commented:

Noted on the following

1. ok. done.

2. I will try defrag.

physical host is windows server 2008 and hyper-v also windows server 2008

3. This is the part. i am currently monitoring. i take a picture daily and compare it. i will update here once i see some changes. so far after a restart of the host and vm space is constant and remains intact. will continue monitoring.
R@f@r P@NC3RVirtualization SpecialistCommented:
Good Morning,

Okay, you can proceed with the cleanup and defragmenting both the host and the vm and let me know the results.

R@f@r P@NC3RVirtualization SpecialistCommented:

Could you perform the disk cleanup and defragmentation of both the host and the vm? Did you have the desired results?

Watch for your comments.
Mohd Nasir Maideen SahibAuthor Commented:
hi.. i've been monitoring the vm and host for now and it looks like it has stabilize. so far 3 days and storage space didnt spike up. As it is an exchange server vm, we are moving onto o365 in a few weeks. i guess i wouldnt want to do anything on it at the moment. Im just worried it will not turn out to be what we expected and its gonna be another firefight.

Lastly, i would like to comment that eversince the space becomes and issue, these are d few thing that i did.

1. restart VM
2. restart host
3. disable backup of the VM (on host level) - (backup is using Backupassist; backup VM)
Mohd Nasir Maideen SahibAuthor Commented:
thank you for working closely with me on this. i guess your solution might work. its just that i didnt want to proceed as i am moving to o365 soon. i let the matter rest since the server is already stable. thanks for being dedicated.
R@f@r P@NC3RVirtualization SpecialistCommented:
Good afternoon,

In account, much success with the change, any doubt, do not hesitate to contact us.

Best regards
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.