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Re: Virtual Machines: Newbie / novice questions

Mark Fletcher wrote:

> On Wed, May 17, 2017 at 12:57:57PM -0400, RavenLX wrote:
>> On 05/17/2017 12:42 PM, craigswin wrote:
>> >
>> >
>> >On 05/17/2017 06:03 AM, RavenLX wrote:
>> But booting into a Windows VM is hard. You can't back up/export without
>> losing your license and having to call MS (which is why I don't even
>> bother) to have them 'fix' it. And updates take forever. My laptop is
>> kinda old so it also bogs down the machine sometimes. In addition, the
>> internet part doesn't always work. Sometimes it stalls and you have to
>> reboot the windows VM to get it working again (maybe something not set
>> right, who knows).
>> My normal workflow includes doing updates on the base VM (which take a
>> long time), then doing a disk cleanup, then sdelete to zero out the
>> unused areas. Next I would clone (at the command line) the VM disk file
>> so that it is fully compressed. Then I export. Not doing this to compress
>> it as much as possible results in a huge exported backup file.
>> I rather back up the exported machine, and then clone it if I need to use
>> a Windows VM. This saves "messing up" windows and having to take half a
>> day or more to reinstall everything, including programs, etc. and
>> updates, etc. etc.
>> Windows 10, at least, is very slow with updates on a virtual machine.
> This is the most unbelievable overkill. Windows VMs work just fine in
> VirtualBox. When it comes to backup, I have my backup scripts check the
> machines are down and if they are, include the virtual disks in the main
> system backup, and if not, skip them for that night. There is no
> Windows-level backup, it's all done at the host level.
> For this to work it has to be OK to down the Windows machines in order
> to back them up,otherwise you risk Windows deciding to do a pointless
> disk write in the middle of your backup and invalidate it. That isn't a
> problem for me; if it were, I would either schedule a maintenance window
> and back them up then, or look into Windows-level backup solutions
> (which _still_ have no need for the nuclear-warhead-to-slice-a-banana
> approach described above).
> Restore is smooth, and no license issues -- the Windows machine never
> knows anything happened.
> Mark

There are the so called snapshots, which you can make and then include in
your back up.  No need to down the VM.

There is also generally no problem with licenses after reinstall as soon as
you have your activation key or the OEMs disks/dvds. On most computers sold
with windows the key is a sticker somewhere at the back, bottom or


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