Almost every IT professional or student uses VMware Workstation to install the virtual machines and play around with the operating systems for learning and various testing purposes. When such people are in the process of testing or learning phase, it is likely that they might accidentally corrupt the running operating system that the virtual machine has.
If such professionals or students fail to take any proactive step before trying anything new on the virtual machines, and the virtual machines get corrupt, they might end up messing the entire virtual lab set up, and might also need to reinstall the corresponding operating system on the virtual machines right from the scratch.
VMware Workstation helps such students and professionals in taking the proactive action by allowing them to take the snapshot of the current state of the virtual machines before anything new is tried on them. The snapshot of the current state of the virtual machines can be thought of as the operating system restore point that windows XP, Windows 7 and Windows 8 operating systems have.
Once the snapshot of the current state of the virtual machine is taken, and in case something goes wrong with the virtual machine during the testing phase, the VM can be rolled back to the previous state when its snapshot was captured.
Below is the process using which you can easily capture a snapshot of the current state of the virtual machine:
- Log on to the computer with corresponding account.
- Initialize the VMware Workstation application.
- Once initialized, highlight (select) the target virtual machine’s tab from within the VMware Workstation console.
- Click the VM menu from the top.
- From the drop-down menu, go to Snapshot > Take Snapshot.
- On the displayed box, specify a name for the snapshot.
- Click the Take Snapshot button to start the process.
Below is the process using which you can revert a virtual machine back to its previous state when its snapshot was taken:
- Follow the steps from 1 to 5 as given above.
- From the drop-down menu, go to Snapshot > Revert to Snapshot: <snapshot name>.
- On the displayed warning box, click Yes to confirm your action.
Although snapshot of a VM can also be captured while the virtual machine is running, process of taking snapshots when the VM is powered off is comparatively simpler and quicker.
Note: Each snapshot of a VM that you capture in VMware Workstation consumes hard disk space. Therefore, snapshots should be taken only when they are really necessary.