With View Composer, you can configure OS data and user information on separate disks in linked-clone virtual machines. View Composer preserves the user information on the persistent disk when the OS data is updated, refreshed, or rebalanced.

A View Composer persistent disk contains user settings and other user-generated data. You create persistent disks when you create a linked-clone desktop pool. See "Worksheet for Creating a Linked-Clone Desktop Pool" in the Setting Up Desktop and Application Pools in View document.

You can detach a persistent disk from its linked-clone virtual machine and store the disk on its original datastore or another datastore. After you detach the disk, the linked-clone virtual machine is deleted. A detached persistent disk is no longer associated with any virtual machine.

You can use several methods to attach a detached persistent disk to another linked-clone virtual machine. This flexibility has several uses:

  • When a linked clone is deleted, you can preserve the user data.
  • When an employee leaves the company, another employee can access the departing employee's user data.
  • A user who has multiple remote desktops can consolidate the user data on a single remote desktop.
  • If a virtual machine becomes inaccessible in vCenter Server, but the persistent disk is intact, you can import the persistent disk and create a new linked clone using the disk.
Note: Persistent disks must be reconnected to the operating system that was used when they were created. For example, you cannot detach a persistent disk from a Windows 7 linked clone and recreate or attach the persistent disk to a Windows 8 linked clone.

View can manage persistent disks from linked-clone pools that were created in View 4.5 or later. Persistent disks that were created in earlier versions of View cannot be managed and do not appear on the Persistent Disks page in View Administrator.