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Unable to resize the disk because it has one or more snapshots

  • Parallels Desktop


  1. It is not possible to resize the the virtual hard drive of a virtual machine via Parallels Management Console.

  2. The following error message appears:

    Unable to resize the disk because it has one or more snapshots.
  3. prlctl snapshot-list VMName command does not show any snapshots


There is a discrepancy between snapshots.xml file and the actual status of the virtual machine's hard disk image.


You can check the number of actually existing snapshots by listing the contents of the virtual machine's .hdd directory:

~# prlctl list "CentOS Linux" -i | grep pvm
Home: /var/parallels/CentOS Linux.pvm/
fdd0 (+) image='/var/parallels/CentOS Linux.pvm/floppy.fdd' state=disconnected
hdd0 (+) sata:0 image='/var/parallels/CentOS Linux.pvm/CentOS Linux-0.hdd' type='expanded' 65536Mb
~# ls -l /var/parallels/CentOS\ Linux.pvm/CentOS\ Linux-0.hdd/
total 2408456
-rwx------ 1 root root          0 Oct  7 08:43 CentOS Linux-0.hdd
-rwx------ 1 root root 2465202176 Nov  4 20:37 CentOS Linux-0.hdd.0.{493f744f-b42f-4d4f-9ef1-9d6427791a4d}.hds
-rwx------ 1 root root    1048576 Nov  4 20:37 CentOS Linux-0.hdd.0.{5fbaabe3-6958-40ff-92a7-860e329aab41}.hds
-rwx------ 1 root root       1843 Oct  7 08:43 DiskDescriptor.xml
-rwx------ 1 root root       1430 Oct  7 08:43 DiskDescriptor.xml.Backup

The number of actually existing snapshots of the disk with 'expanded' type should be equal to the number of *.hds files minus 1.

If the Vmname.pvm/Snapshots.xml file is empty, but there are actually existing snapshots (*.hds files), the disk must be merged manually:

# prl_disk_tool merge --hdd /var/parallels/VM.pvm/vm.hdd

After that the virtual hard drive can be resized from Parallels Management Console, or using the following command:

# prl_disk_tool resize --hdd /var/parallels/VM.pvm/vm.hdd --size 192G


  1. This method is applicable only if snapshots.xml file does not contain any information about the existing snapshots or if the information contained there is not entirely correct. In other case snapshots should be deleted from Parallels Management Console (Virtual Machine->Manage Snapshots), or via prlctl snapshot-delete command.

  2. Resize command provided in the example above will not change the size of the primary NTFS partition. It needs to be resized later using standard Windows disk management tool (for Windows Vista or Server 2008 or later), or with 3rd party partitioning tools (for Windows XP, Server 2003)

    --resize_partition switch can also be used:

    # prl_disk_tool resize --hdd /var/parallels/VM.pvm/vm.hdd --size 192G --resize_partition


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