I have a Centos VMware Image that I have recreated a couple times, and I notice that after a while it gets pretty large.

It starts out at 8 GBs when I make it, and a week or two later it is 25GB and then a month later it is a whole 50GB or so. I am not installing anything crazy on it, and my disk usage on the VM is pretty low. Is there an option that could be affecting the size of these VMs?

  • Yes. Auto-growth is enabled.
    – user3463
    Jan 10, 2011 at 19:41
  • Any other VMs on this physical box?
    – IrqJD
    Jan 10, 2011 at 19:45
  • yes, there is one other Windows 7 vm
    – stevebot
    Jan 10, 2011 at 19:51

1 Answer 1


You want to make sure that you aren't taking "snapshots" of your Virtual Machine.

These snapshots store a 'version' of your machine so you can easily come back to it in case you mess things up in the future. It's similar to a backup, but it actually just snaps an image of the hard drive at that moment and stores all of the information in case you want to come back to it in the future.

  • I didn't think of snapshots. +1 for you.
    – user3463
    Jan 10, 2011 at 19:51
  • I'm using VMware player which I don't think allows you to do it (at least I don't see it exposed in the UI).
    – stevebot
    Jan 10, 2011 at 19:52
  • 1
    It takes a diff, not a full copy of the VM, but you're almost certainly right about what's happening.
    – CarlF
    Jan 10, 2011 at 21:51
  • It actually wasn't making snapshots. This link helped: petri.co.il/virtual_vmware_files_explained.htm There were no VMSN or VMSD files, so no snapshots.
    – stevebot
    Jan 11, 2011 at 20:16
  • It appears that my VM started churning out lots of vmdk files and that was what was causing the size issues. Still not sure why though.
    – stevebot
    Jan 11, 2011 at 20:17

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .