I've been doing an evaluation of View and today I am going over Linked Clones. Looking at the linked clone process and how you update the parent it seems as if there is no way to keep your snapshots under control.
The way I read the documentation once the Parent Snapshot has been created it is there forever. If I update the Parent VM and create a new snapshot I can not delete the old snapshot or the linked clones break. Does this mean the only way to reduce a Parent vm footprint with lots of snapshots is to create a totally new parent and point all of the VMs to the new parent?
I'm trying to understand how to leverage linked clones but not manage a lot of snapshots over the course of the Parent VMs life span.
Thank you for your time.
Once you are confident the new anchor point (snapshot) for your linked clones is good (by this I mean you have edited the image settings of the pool to reflect the new snapshot, performed the recomposition and tested the linked clone) you can delete the original snapshot. Sometimes, it is nice to leave it around for a bit as a fall-back. Currently, after you delete the original snapshot the summary pool settings will still display the old snapshot in the snapshot path but you can disregard that. If that bothers you, you can edit the image settings for the pool again and then it will display correctly.
This is curious. I actually tried this before posting my original request here. I booted my vm, made some changes and then saved a new snapshot, linked that snap to the linked clones, rebooted the vms and everything seemed fine. At that point I deleted the original snapshot. I then started getting deployment errors as View tried to generate a new clone per my configuration. I'll give this a try again and see if I can duplicate the behavior.
what you might consider is to use a new parent vm with a snapshot when your old vm has "too many" snapshots. You would just recompose your pool to use the new parent vm snapshot. Of course the new parent vm would have to have all the apps and other things your current parent vm is using