5 Replies Latest reply on Jul 16, 2011 8:05 AM by SantaSadler

    Disk Space Growing - Disk Cleanup not working

    SantaSadler Lurker

      I have VMWare 3.1.3 using it to run Windows XP on a Summer 2009 iMac with 8GB of RAM and 1TB of disk (partitioned). I'm in a cycle where after a couple weeks VMWare says it needs more disk space. The space for Windows XP is on a virtual disk partion and it's size is about 194 GB. The local C drive for Windows XP is showing about the same amount of space or 134GB of free space and 60 of used space. So it appears I need to reduce the disk size for the C drive so that I can make everything fit on the 194GB partition.


      When I go to the Settings panel and click on HDD there is a message at the top saying "These settings cannot be changed while disk cleanup is recommended. To make these changes, first click the Clean Up Disk button." When I do this the pop up panel warns about cleanup taking a long time. I click the Clean Up button and it pops up with "Cleaning deleted files ..." and then quickly stops with no messages and the same warning message at the top of the HDD panel.


      Under Windows I have run Disk Defrag after getting rid of several files to free up space on the C drive. The Disk Defrag panel shows files (used space) spread all across the disk. And I have used Virtual Machine Snapshots to remove all snap shots. So now no snapshots show under the Snapshot window.


      What can I do to get Clean Up Disk to work? Bottom line is I want to stop the creaping cycle of VMWare needing more disk space where the partition is big enough to hold the Windows XP system.



        • 1. Re: Disk Space Growing - Disk Cleanup not working
          creteroyal Lurker

          I have the same problem! My virtual disk size has reached almost 50Gb and I don't know how to reduce it. Any suggestions?




          car hire crete

          • 2. Re: Disk Space Growing - Disk Cleanup not working
            SantaSadler Lurker

            I've been reading through the forums and following the documentation but nothing seems work. And I've become confused and overwhelmed with information. I've been working on this since last week and I'm just spinning my wheels with little to show for the time and effort. When I started having the problem, the VMWare file holding Windows XP was about 190GB and now its about 225GB. Evertime when I got a little more space I could start using VMWare/Windows XP but after a few hours of light usage, bang I'm back getting the need more disk spacemessage out of VMWare. I've been able to free up a little disk space but I've run out of that option so I'm stuck.  I sure wish I could find some help! A bummer.


            Right now I'm trying to use the Settings Hard Disk panel and Clean Up Disk button. Make sure to follow the instructions at the top of the panel. When I've done this before it started the delete and then quickly quit with no messages nor noticeable changes. This time the delete progress bar has been running since about 9:00 AM this morning - it's now just after 3:00 PM and still running. I'm afraid it is not doing anything but I'll let it run as there is a warning that the delete could take a long time. We'll see.


            I've submitted a problem report to VMWare support this morning but haven't heard anything so far.


            Please someone help use get out of this mess.

            • 3. Re: Disk Space Growing - Disk Cleanup not working

              It is possible that your shrink will be long running.  Does it have the solid progress bar?


              You can verify it is working by opening Activity Monitor and watching Disk Activity.  You can see that there is some reading and writing going on, and also check the CPU usage that the vmware vmx process is using.


              It is hard to know why your WinXP VM is so large, but generally, 'growable' or 'sparse' disks start at a certain size (on your Mac HD). Windows 'guest' OS would see a larger size, which is the maximum size.


              If you download files or otherwise fill up the VM until needs to get larger than the size on your Mac 'host' HD, the VM will grow.  If you deleted the files files after that, it won't get smaller - until you shrink.


              Did you the 'prepare to shrink' in the VMware Tools UI in Windows before Clean up Disk in Settings?


              Let the list know how your disk clean up goes!

              • 4. Re: Disk Space Growing - Disk Cleanup not working
                SantaSadler Lurker

                Thank you so much for responding. This is encouraging!


                I checked the activity monitor and found VM-Ware running a small percent of the time and vmware-vmx in red and showing "not responding". At that point I killed vmware-vmx and then VM-Ware and the HD Panel immediately ended. The HD panel is still pointing to "file:///Volumes/Windows%20XP/Windows%20XP%20Professional.vmwarevm/Windows%20XP%20Professional-000005.vmdk" with the message at the top of the panel saying "These settings can not be changed while disk cleanup is recommended. To make these changes, first click the Clean Up Disk Button." When I click on the "Clean Up disk" button it starts up with the same progress bar saying "Cleaning up deleted files" but stops within a few seconds with no messages. As far as I can tell nothing has changed and I get the same response when clicking on the "Clean Up Disk" button each time. When I check for snapshots Panel it shows there are no snapshots.


                To make myself clear, I'h not using vmware-vdiskmanager tool in the VMWare Fusion folder instead I'm using the Settings HD Panel with VMware. The "Windows XP Professional.vmwarevm" file has not changed as far as I can tell. It is still 229GB.


                I did not do a prepare to shrink process this time. I'm just using the VMWare settings control panel. When I tried the prepare for shrink thing yesterday it didn't seem to do anything. I'm not sure I was able to execute the command properly. I was expecting that VMWare itself would provide guidance via error messages or Troubleshooting documentation.


                When I try to restart my Windows XP, a popup panel says "... critically low on space and I need to free up at least 650.1MB of space. Before when attempting the last startup it said it needed 134MB of space"!


                I attached a Support file showing the condition of VM-Ware. What should I do as my next step?

                • 5. Re: Disk Space Growing - Disk Cleanup not working
                  SantaSadler Lurker

                  I found a solution and a better understanding of the disk space problem. I bought an external drive, copied the  VMWare file for my XP Windows machine to it, then brought up VMWare and opened the file on the new drive. First thing I did was go to the Settings HDD panel and ran "Clean Up Disk" It ran successfully but took about two and a half hours to complete with a progress bar showing for the duration. The size of the VMWare XP Windows file was at 228 GB when I started the Clean Up Files process. During the process the file grew to about 245GB and then at the completion it came down to about 130GB.


                  Then I started up the new machine and did two more things. I ran a third party disk defrag and optimizer on the C drive. Then I used the VM Ware tools (from within Windows XP) to Shrink the VMWare machine file. There's two steps to this. First you use the "Prepare to Shrink" button which took about an hour or so to run showing a progress bar. Then you click the OK button. Again this took an hour or so to run if I remember correctly. At the end, the size of the VMWare file dropped all the way down to 38GB. After a little bit of use the file jumped to 48GB and now after another day it is at 51GB.


                  So the machine grows over time for one reason or another. Periodically you need to do the  Clean Up Files thing from the Setting HDD panel. And then periodically do a disk defrag a and then use the VM tools to do a Shrink to keep the file from growing beyond whatever disk space there is available. Keep in mind VMWare needs to be able to grow the machine file when doing the  Clean Up Files. If there is not enough disk space for it to finish it quits silently with no info explaning why it has not completed the disk files.


                  I found no simple clearcut explanation and instructions to address the disk space growing problem. Instead I found mounds and mounds of postings and documents covering several years and versions of VMWare Fusion that were confusing and useless. And when posting to this forum I got only one response with suggestions meant to help. I'd say there needs to be a lot of work done to clean up the forums - get rid of old and duplicate postings and have a really focued troubleshooting guide. And every product needs its own trouble shooting guide even if the explabnation and procedures are the same across different products.


                  Anyone interesting in buying 1TB external USB disk drive? Brand new and only used for a couple of days.