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Converting a linked clone virtual machine to a full clone virtual machine (1026753)

Purpose

You may want to convert a linked clone virtual machine to a full clone virtual machine in these scenarios:
  • The virtual machine that has important information in the C: drive and on the user data disk does not power on and you do not want to recompose
  • When you view the virtual machine from a datastore browser, the replica disk is missing
  • When you connect to the host via command line, the -flat.vmdk file of the virtual machine exists but the .vmdk descriptor file does not exist or is corrupted
This article provides the steps to convert a linked clone virtual machine into a full clone virtual machine.

Resolution

To convert a linked clone virtual machine to a full virtual machine, use one of these options:

Note
: A linked clone that has been converted to a full virtual machine should never be used as a parent or template virtual machine with a VMware Horizon View environment.

Option 1: Cloning through vCenter Server
  1. Locate your linked clone virtual machine in vCenter Server.
  2. Right-click and click Clone to a Virtual Machine.
  3. Navigate through the wizard.
  4. After the cloning completes, power on and test the virtual machine.

This method clones a full clone copy of the virtual machine, with the same configuration and multiple disks as the linked clone. The linked clone remains.

Option 2: Storage Migration through vCenter Server

  1. Locate your linked clone virtual machine in vCenter Server.
  2. Right-click and click Migrate and Change Datastore.
  3. Navigate through the wizard.
  4. After the migration completes, power on and test the virtual machine.

A storage migration migrates the virtual machine and results in a full clone on the new datastore. The linked clone is removed as a result of this operation.

Option 3: From the ESX/ESXi command line

  1. SSH into an ESX host that can see the source and destination VMFS/NFS volume.
  2. Run this command to commit the snapshot from the linked clone virtual machine into the full clone:

    # vmkfstools –i /vmfs/volumes/SOURCE_DATASTORE/SOURCE_VM/linked-clone.vmdk /vmfs/volumes/DESTINATION_DATASTORE/DESTINATION_VM/full-clone.vmdk

  3. Attach the .VMDK file to the new virtual machine. For more information, see Add an Existing Hard Disk to a Virtual Machine in the vSphere Web Client in the VMware vSphere Machine Administration Guide.
  4. From the Edit Settings tab, remove the CD drive before powering on the virtual machine.

    Note: Otherwise, the CD drive may be detected before the user data disk. This may break the profile redirection if the data disk gets the incorrect drive letter.

  5. Power on the virtual machine and recover any necessary user information. You can also create a manual pool, entitle the user, and allow the user to log in.

See Also

Request a Product Feature

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