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Can one parent disk be used for multiple differencing disk cloned VMs? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi, I want to use a master hard disk to make multiple VM clones that will run at the same time.  I know about the trick to use sysprep to create a new sid for each VM I create (and I have already run sysprep on the master disk), but my question is, can I use one "master" parent disk and create differencing disks for all of the clones from this one image, or do I need to make a physical copy of the parent disk for each differencing disk that I make?
    • Edited by Irinotecan Tuesday, May 19, 2009 4:58 PM
    Tuesday, May 19, 2009 4:57 PM

Answers

  • Yes, your mileage will greatly vary.

    This is great for a one off type of deployment, or where the children need to be rolled back to a clean state.

    In production the big issues are management of the OS: patching, upgrading applications, etc.
    Once the base parent image is linked to it cannot be altered in any way.

    I have outlined the basics here:
    http://itproctology.blogspot.com/2008/05/using-single-base-vhd-to-create-many.html

    Brian Ehlert (hopefully you have found this useful)
    • Proposed as answer by Vincent Hu Wednesday, May 20, 2009 10:35 AM
    • Marked as answer by Vincent Hu Wednesday, May 27, 2009 7:02 AM
    Tuesday, May 19, 2009 5:13 PM

All replies

  • Yes, your mileage will greatly vary.

    This is great for a one off type of deployment, or where the children need to be rolled back to a clean state.

    In production the big issues are management of the OS: patching, upgrading applications, etc.
    Once the base parent image is linked to it cannot be altered in any way.

    I have outlined the basics here:
    http://itproctology.blogspot.com/2008/05/using-single-base-vhd-to-create-many.html

    Brian Ehlert (hopefully you have found this useful)
    • Proposed as answer by Vincent Hu Wednesday, May 20, 2009 10:35 AM
    • Marked as answer by Vincent Hu Wednesday, May 27, 2009 7:02 AM
    Tuesday, May 19, 2009 5:13 PM
  • Yes, technically.  Great for testing and labs.  Bad for production.  At least until you know a lot more about the effects!

    Shane Cribbs

    Tuesday, May 19, 2009 9:06 PM