Can I create a hierarchy of "children" virtual machines?

Discussion in 'Windows Guest OS Discussion' started by Scott Bass 123456, Jun 1, 2011.

  1. Scott Bass 123456

    Scott Bass 123456 Bit Poster

    Messages:
    13
    Hi,

    Host OS: Mac OS X 10.6.7
    Guest OS: Windoze 7
    Parallels Version: Parallels Desktop 6 for Mac, latest version

    Is it possible to create "child" virtual machines that "inherit" from a "parent" virtual machine?

    By way of example:

    VM1: Base install of Windows 7
    VM1.1: Install SQL Server
    VM1.1.1/2/3: Three different .Net applications that use SQL Server

    What I'm hoping for (hard disk sizes are for illustration only):

    * VM1 consumes say 3GB of disk space, has MS Office installed and registered (!@#$% MS Office licensing policy)
    * VM1.1 consumes say 800MB of disk space, has MS Office available, and inherits all the security updates to Win7 that have to be applied weekly.
    * VM1.1.* consumes say 200MB each, has MS Office and SQL Server available, and inherits the security updates.

    IOW, each child virtual machine inherits from the parent virtual machine, and the child VM hard disk is a "delta" file containing only the new files/software.

    Is this virtual machine setup possible with Parallels Desktop? Perhaps via snapshot files? Or do I need to clone each child virtual machine from the parent? If so, in the above example, I'll have to install security updates to 5 VMs, will run into licensing problems with MS Office, and my host HD usage will soar.

    Thanks,
    Scott
     
  2. Scott Bass 123456

    Scott Bass 123456 Bit Poster

    Messages:
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  3. blb@msn.com

    blb@msn.com

    Messages:
    3
    in a word no. windows does not support this. it doesn't really support running a copy of a vm as a new one. if you want to run two windows vm's at the same time, then afater the copy you need to run sysprep (which clears a bunch of setup information).

    and snapshots won't work for this. a snapshot is a backup of the vm at a point in time. the changes to each snap are independent of each other.

    so you will need full vm's. after building the first vm you can clone it. then run sysprep and save. now you can use this vm as a template (but it can not get too old or the activations will not work -- see sysprep docs.)

    if you are just going to run 1 vm at a time. then you can copy it and change.
     
  4. Scott Bass 123456

    Scott Bass 123456 Bit Poster

    Messages:
    13
    AFAIK, this has nothing to do with Windows and everything to do with Parallels. IIRC, I was able to do this with VMWare on Windows several years ago.
     
  5. Scott Bass 123456

    Scott Bass 123456 Bit Poster

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    13
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2011
  6. ChingyC

    ChingyC

    Messages:
    10
    Windows don't support this, it won't really support running a copy of a virtual machine as a new.[​IMG]
     

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