Snapshots are a major means of protecting workloads, helping to ensure quick restoration, rollback or recovery...
when trouble strikes. But an extensive snapshot regimen is certainly no obligation. Despite the ability to preserve data at any point in time, some choose to disable snapshots. Organizations may limit snapshots to save storage capacity and guard workload performance, while eliminating snapshots outright when the circumstances dictate it.
How do I disable snapshots in vSphere 6?
VM administrators using vSphere 6 can alter the number of snapshots that can be performed on a virtual machine using the snapshot.MaxSnapshots parameter. By default, the maximum number of snapshots is 32. Reducing the number of snapshots can save storage capacity and perhaps boost performance for performance-sensitive VMs or host systems. But setting the parameter to a value of zero should effectively disable snapshots for the selected VM.
First, power down the VM with vSphere Web Client, then choose the VM to be adjusted and select Edit Settings. Click Options, General and Configuration Parameters. Click Add Row and then add a line such as:
snapshot.MaxSnapshots – 0
Now click OK to save any changes and power on the VM again.
This tactic to disable snapshots is reported to work in vSphere 6, but there is a wrinkle -- you can't have any snapshots present for the VM. If you do, the change may not take hold -- you can't logically say zero snapshots for a VM if that VM has one or more snapshots present. This often results in a CannotDisableSnapshot error message. This means you should first delete any snapshots for the VM, or consolidate any snapshots so that the changes are written to the base .vmdk file. Now try disabling the snapshots.
Once you have successfully disabled snapshots, you cannot take subsequent snapshots without drawing an error message indicating that you've exceeded the maximum number of permitted snapshots -- if the max is zero, any snapshot attempt will cause an error message.
If you decide to restore snapshots later or adjust the number of snapshots retained, just change the number from zero to the desired number of snapshots -- up to a maximum of 32.
How to take advantage of VM snapshots in a virtual desktop environment
Snapshots just aren't enough for data protection sometimes
How do Hyper-V snapshots work?
Dig Deeper on Selecting storage and hardware for VMware environments
Related Q&A from Stephen J. Bigelow
Full virtualization and paravirtualization both enable hardware resource abstraction, but the two technologies differ when it comes to isolation ... Continue Reading
Organizations can cap their hyper-converged infrastructure costs when they deploy the Azure Stack HCI platform, but once they plug into the cloud, ... Continue Reading
You can implement ESXi on ARM -- or other RISC processors -- in micro and nano data centers. A nano data center is more specialized but also more ... Continue Reading
Have a question for an expert?
Please add a title for your question
Get answers from a TechTarget expert on whatever's puzzling you.