If you are like me, you tend to create Virtual Machines (VM’s) every so often to test different scenarios. And if you are also like me you are constantly running into and complaining that you have no free storage space on any drives internal or external to create more VM’s to do more testing with. What can I say? Nature abhors a vacuum.
So today I want to make you aware of a couple of things that I like to do for monthly maintenance items when using personal VM’s.
First, I like to go into the VM itself and run storage cleanup on the drive itself to get rid of things like windows updates, temp storage, and cached items from other sources that just take up unnecessary room on the OS drive in my VM.
Usually this starts by right clicking on the OS drive itself and choosing “Disk Cleanup”.
The above image came from a Windows 10 box, but your mileage may vary and most windows servers and client machines have a similar setting.
On certain servers however, you may have to go in and activate the “Desktop Experience” feature in order to have this button show.
Here’s a link to TechNet for Windows Server 2012 as an example.
So now you may have freed up some valuable space on your VM, but did you know if you use VMWare there is another setting that can be just as beneficial?
If you use VMWare Workstation there is a setting under the VM menu, located under the manage section called “Clean Up Disks…” and this can be just as beneficial at freeing up more space. Find this option after highlighting a VM in your list of VM’s.
Choosing this option will open another window that will look like this:
By selecting the “Clean up now” option this will give back space to your drive that you can now use to create more and more lovely Virtual Machines to test more and more scenarios with.
I’m not sure if Virtual Box or Hyper-V have a similar setting, but hopefully they do. That may be another post down the road…
Hopefully this helps with any spring cleaning you might do, but it’s definitely one thing to revisit if you are actively testing scenarios locally or in a big virtual environment.