Before you create linked clones, you must disable scheduled defragmentations on Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1, and Windows 10 parent virtual machines. Windows guest operating systems schedule weekly disk defragmentations by default. Repeated defragmentation operations significantly increase the size of linked-clone OS disks and do not make disk access more efficient on linked clones.
When you create a linked-clone pool from the parent virtual machine, the linked clones share the replica's disk. Subsequent defragmentation operations do not affect the replica's disk, which is read-only. Instead, defragmentations expand each clone's OS disk.
As a best practice, defragment the parent virtual machine one time, before you take a snapshot and create the pool. The linked clones benefit from the defragmentation because they share the replica's optimized, read-only disk.
The following steps apply to Windows 7 and Windows 8. The steps might vary on different Windows operating systems.
- Verify that the applications that you intend to deploy to the linked clones are installed on the virtual machine.
- Verify that View Agent with View Composer Agent is installed on the virtual machine.
- In vSphere Client, select the parent virtual machine and select Open Console.
- Log in to the Windows guest operating system as an administrator.
- Click Start and type defrag in the Search programs and files box.
- In the Programs pane, click Disk Defragmenter.
- In the Disk Defragmenter dialog box, click Defragment disk.
The Disk Defragmenter consolidates defragmented files on the virtual machine's hard disk.
- In the Disk Defragmenter dialog box, click Configure schedule.
- Deselect Run on a schedule (recommended) and click OK.
Defragmentation operations will not take place on linked-clone virtual machines that are created from this parent virtual machine.