Use Fixed-Size Disks To Speed Up Your Virtual Machines

Virtual machines are great for running another operating system on top of your desktop, such as when you're testing Windows 8 or running OS X inside Windows. Using a fixed-size disk can help you speed up this notoriously slow process.

Our friends over at the How-To Geek have rounded up a bunch of tips for speeding up your virtual machines. Some you may already know, such as allocating more RAM or CPU resources to the system, while others you might not. Here's one we didn't know about: using a fixed size disk can actually make your machine run faster than using the space-saving, dynamically allocated disk -- particularly when you're writing large amounts of data to your virtual machine. It will also decrease the amount of fragmentation your disk experiences. To use a fixed size disk, just choose the option when prompted during the initial setup of your machine.

The How-To Geek has all sorts of other performance-boosting tips in their guide, from placing VMs on another drive to excluding those files from antivirus apps. Hit the link below for the full guide.

The HTG Guide To Speeding Up Your Virtual Machines [How-To Geek]


    There's pros and cons to this though:

    Pro: performance is a bit better using the guest OS.
    Con: It takes ages to actually create the virtual disk.

    Personally (using both VMWare Workstation and VirtualBox) I always opt for dynamic disks.

    If your VMs are notoriously slow, there is some underlying reason for that.

    Up front block allocation isn't going to fix it.

    Your not running your VM's on SSD's?

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