Old snapshot in datastore - ok to delete?


I have a snapshot showing up in a datastore but not the VMs snapshot manager. The snapshot is from 02/2017. The VM has been running and backing up fine for a while but backup failed this weekend with a snapshot error. Not sure of this old snapshot caused the failure but in the course of troubleshooting I found the old snapshot and thought I might as well get rid of it. Is it ok to delete it either directly from the vCenter web client or from an ssh session? Should I create a manual snapshot first then delete all to see if that clears it?

Thanks for the help
king daddyAsked:
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Can you post a screenshot of the VM folder and I tell you how to proceeed?
king daddyAuthor Commented:
Thanks, Andrew.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Okay, it only looks like you have three snapshots.

Can you also please check the Disk Settings in the VM Disk Properties, and check the VM is currently writing to the snapshot file, which looks like this...


and then we can proceed ?

Do you use Veeam Backup and Replication or similar to backup VMs ?
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king daddyAuthor Commented:
The snapshot 000003.vmdk does not show up in disk properties. Only the covwpvshrpnt01.vmdk is listed in both the web client as well as the stand alone client.

We do not use Veeam. We use Avamar. I am new here and am just learning Avamar after having used Veeam for years. Avamar does use snapshots for backup.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Okay, here is a test....

1. Take a new snapshot.
2. Wait 120 seconds.
3. Create a new snapshot.

Does the snapshot-00003.vmdk file disappear.

Then it's safe to delete it (manually) but I would recommend a MOVE first.....(e.g. to some scratch data folder)

if you cannot move it, it maybe in use....

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king daddyAuthor Commented:
Will do. I am going to wait until after hours though as this is a production sharepoint server.
To be clear:
take a new snapshot
wait 120 seconds
create another snapshot
check that 00003.vmdk file has disappeared (from the datastore? it's not showing in snapshot manager.)
Don't I need to delete all from snapshot manager after taking these snapshots?

If so, move it. However, if it has disappeared from the datastore, I won't be able to manually move it as the issue should now be resolved, correct?

Thanks again.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Yes, after 120 seconds, DELETE ALL.

But if the snapshot is an orphan, which it appears to be..... it will exist....

or you'll have another one called -00004.vmdk
king daddyAuthor Commented:
Got it. Thanks for clarifying. Will update.
king daddyAuthor Commented:
I didn't get approval to do this last night so will do tonight and update. Thanks
king daddyAuthor Commented:
I still haven't gotten approval so will resubmit request. I think it slipped through the cracks as the backup has been successfully running.
I am going to close this but will perform your test and open a new question if needed.
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