Solved share boot drive with multiple VM's

January 23, 2018 at 10:58:28
Specs: Windows 10, AMD Turion 2.4GHz/4GB RAM
Is it possible to create multiple HyperV VM's that share the same virtual disk and OS files?

I'm not talking about sharing a storage location between VM's but sharing the actual boot drive and OS files.

I have a learning virtual test environment with many different VM's, all running Server 2012. My problem is that each new VM that I spin up costs me about 20 GB on my physical drive on my host and I am running out of space fast!

The answer is probably no, but is there any way, since they are all similar in configuration, to group a few VM's (even if I have to start fresh, I don't mind) to all share the core OS files needed to boot? So essentially I would be running 2, 3, or 4+ VM's off of one physical Windows install/virtual disk, and attach a second virtual disk (or whatever other means necessary), for the differences between them; network configurations, name, license details, installed roles, etc... Hence saving 10-15 GB of physical disk space for each new machine.

Is anything like this possible or any other suggestions on saving physical disk space when configuring multiple VM's on 1 host

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January 24, 2018 at 00:17:53
✔ Best Answer
I'm not aware of any way this could be done (although I would be interested in other opinions).

But I think the real answer is to install a larger, or additional, hard disk. Storage costs nowadays are less than $1 for 20GB, so about 50-75 cents per VM. This is absolutely negligible compared with the licensing costs of each additional instance of Windows. Don't forget that you will need plenty of RAM, and a reasonably powerful processor, to run 4 VMs.

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