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Steps for shrinking a vmware disk for a Windows guest VM inside VMware Workstation of VMware Fusion

Posted by jpluimers on 2014/01/13

Another one from the “missed schedule” series, this one was originally scheduled for 20130927.

These articles were not very clear on the actual steps to take:

The steps I tried:

  1. made sure I did not have any snapshots (they are incompatible with shrinking disks)
  2. in the Windows guest: at an elevated command prompt, defrag the drive and consolidate the free space (defrag C: /U /V /X)
  3. in the Windows guest: in Disk Management, shrink the partition
  4. shutdown the VM
  5. defrag the vmdk from within VMware Workstation/Fusion
  6. compact the vmdk from within VMware Workstation/Fusion
  7. boot the Windows guest
  8. in the Windows guest: shrink the volume in VMware Tools
  9. in the Windows guest: wait for VMware tools to perform the first shrink step, and to prompt for the second step
  10. wait for VMware Workstation/Fusion to perform the second step of the shrink

Maybe step 3 was not strictly needed, but this gives me some head room on the guest side: I can always expand it when it is needed (this is a boot drive after all).


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