When you take a snapshot, you capture the state of the virtual disk and memory. These states are captured in separate files that reside with the VM's base files. Among the many files that are created, those that are space-related are important, and include the following:
vmname-number.vmdk and vmname.Snapshotnumber.vmsn
vmname-number.vmdk: Here, vmname is the snapshot file representing the difference between the current state of the virtual disk and the state that existed at the time the previous snapshot was taken. The filename uses the following syntax: S1vm-000001.vmdk, where S1vm is the name of the VM, and the six-digit number, 000001, is based on the files that already exist in the directory. The number does not consider the number of disks that are attached to the VM.
vmname.Snapshotnumber.vmsn: This is the memory state of the VM at the time you take the snapshot. The filename uses the following syntax: S1vm.snapshot1.vmsn, where S1vm is the VM name, and snapshot1 is the first snapshot.
A .vmsn file is created each time you take a snapshot.
To view these files:
- Open your vSphere client.
- Under the Storage view, select a datastore and click Browse. This will list all VMs as folders.
- Navigate to the VM that contains the desired snapshots by clicking on its name.
All the files that belong to the VM will be listed there, which includes the snapshot files.