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Estimated Time To Consolidate Snapshots For VMware ESX And VMware ESXi

One of the major benefits of virtualization and VMware is its capability to take snapshots of a virtual machine. The snapshot features permits users to create a restore point for a virtual machine that is crash reliable. This feature is also beneficial when performing upgrade, no error is encountered while performing this process. With this, users can swiftly go to a manageable restore point.

Snapshots are really advantageous for quick restorations however, if it is carried on for a long period of time, it can have negative impact on environment. One of the disasters is heavy I/O workload which can be encountered if you leave a snapshot active for a long period of time. Whenever a virtual machine is operated without snapshots, the virtual machine functions and modifications are written to the base virtual disk. The changes are also written to the snapshot delta file. If another snapshot is taken, a second delta file is formed and the process continues. The time required to commit snapshots is directly related to the total size of the delta files. It also depend on the depth of the virtual disk snapshot chain and the total number of overhead size of the snapshot delta disks which is openly related to the total size of the deltas. If there are a large number of blocks to analyze, it considerably escalates the number of reads for examining the metadata, thus increasing the overall time for consolidation. Additionally, you can upturn the time limit on the snapshots consolidation by changing the configuration parameters.

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The storage array performance comprising, but is not restricted to, storage processor performance, infrastructure contention, hardware acceleration, the number of physical disks, the number of spindles, disk speed, and RAID configuration. The load on the host is accountable for resource management and arranging tasks. The disk I/O activity of a powered on virtual machine having a direct effect on how fast the current delta files are developing. For instance, a database or email server virtual machine may be very I/O intensive. In order to consolidate snapshots, users need to follow the steps mentioned below:

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  1. Right-click the virtual machine and click Snapshot and then Consolidate.
  2. Check the Needs Consolidation column to confirm that the task flourished. To check the Consolidation progress, see Commands to monitor snapshot deletion in VMware ESX or VMware ESXi.

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