4.2. Cloning a Virtual Machine

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Before proceeding with cloning, shut down the virtual machine. You can clone the virtual machine using virt-clone or virt-manager.

4.2.1. Cloning Guests with virt-clone

You can use virt-clone to clone virtual machines from the command line.
Note that you need root privileges for virt-clone to complete successfully.
The virt-clone command provides a number of options that can be passed on the command line. These include general options, storage configuration options, networking configuration options, and miscellaneous options. Only the --original is required. To see a complete list of options, enter the following command:
# virt-clone --help
The virt-clone man page also documents each command option, important variables, and examples.
The following example shows how to clone a guest virtual machine called "demo" on the default connection, automatically generating a new name and disk clone path.

Example 4.1. Using virt-clone to clone a guest

# virt-clone --original demo --auto-clone
The following example shows how to clone a QEMU guest virtual machine called "demo" with multiple disks.

Example 4.2. Using virt-clone to clone a guest

# virt-clone --connect qemu:///system --original demo --name newdemo --file /var/lib/libvirt/images/newdemo.img --file /var/lib/libvirt/images/newdata.img

4.2.2. Cloning Guests with virt-manager

This procedure describes cloning a guest virtual machine using the virt-manager utility.

Procedure 4.2. Cloning a Virtual Machine with virt-manager

  1. Open virt-manager

    Start virt-manager. Launch the Virtual Machine Manager application from the Applications menu and System Tools submenu. Alternatively, run the virt-manager command as root.
    Select the guest virtual machine you want to clone from the list of guest virtual machines in Virtual Machine Manager.
    Right-click the guest virtual machine you want to clone and select Clone. The Clone Virtual Machine window opens.
    Clone Virtual Machine window

    Figure 4.1. Clone Virtual Machine window

  2. Configure the clone

    • To change the name of the clone, enter a new name for the clone.
    • To change the networking configuration, click Details.
      Enter a new MAC address for the clone.
      Click OK.
      Change MAC Address window

      Figure 4.2. Change MAC Address window

    • For each disk in the cloned guest virtual machine, select one of the following options:
      • Clone this disk - The disk will be cloned for the cloned guest virtual machine
      • Share disk with guest virtual machine name - The disk will be shared by the guest virtual machine that will be cloned and its clone
      • Details - Opens the Change storage path window, which enables selecting a new path for the disk
        Change storage path window

        Figure 4.3. Change storage path window

  3. Clone the guest virtual machine

    Click Clone.
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