I am Dale Hayter, a Microsoft and VMware certified Technical Consultant.

My blog has been built up over the years from my experience of working on an IT helpdesk and also from being out on-site.

VMware ESX – Commit snapshots safely with no data loss.

If you have been unfortunate enough to find yourself with loads of snapshots in ESX and have snapshots with file sizes bigger than a couple of GB. Then you might be scared to commit them in case of data loss.

You can easily get rid of all the snapshots without any data loss. Using the VMKFS tools you can clone out the hard drives in their current state including snapshots to 1 VMDK. To do this run the following when SSH’d in.

vmkfstools -i harddrivename-000001.vmdk /vmfs/volumes/datastore/ new foldername/new_harddrivename.vmdk

Then it will clone the drive. This may take a couple of hours depending on the size of your drive. Then you just attach the new drive to a newly created VM.

VMware Knowledgebase : 1002458