Free Guest-based snapshotting tool for Hyper-V

Today I learned about a free cool tool that plugs on of those holes that Hyper-V savvy professionals deal with. This could really go somewhere. It allows guest-based snapshotting tool for Hyper-V and it is FREE.

This tool deals with, what I think it solves some  very common problems: you want to use Hyper-V on your laptop but you don’t want to have to go another management console to take a snapshot or even worse, you are in a Hyper-V hosted virtual machine (via RDP) and you don’t even have access to a Hyper-V Management Console, yet you want to –multiple- take snapshots and revert back to any one of them without leaving your virtual machine. I know I have wanted to have this, well now you can. For free! All courtesy of the talented Kalle Saunamäki (App-V MVP) at  This new product HyperSnapshot, and its sole purpose in life is to enable fully guest-based operation of a) making snapshots at will and b) reverting to those snapshots at will; all without having to resort to using Hyper-V management tools. The only requirement that the product has is that you install a client piece inside all your virtual machines that you want to enable snapshot –capabilities, as well as service component to each Hyper-V host machine having such guests. But there is absolutely no requirement of re-configuration of virtual machines to use COM port redirection to named pipes, or anything silly like that.

The client will sit in the notification area, once started, and the operation is done from the context menu of that notification area icon. It will auto-discover your Hyper-V host system, if it has Data Exchange enabled for VM as well as the server-side piece of HyperSnapshot installed. No manual configuration what so ever required.

To operate the software, you can take snapshot of the current state:

Taking snapshot with HyperSnapshot

Snapshot request sent

…after a while the client will notify that the snapshot operation has been completed:

Snapshot is created

And you can revert back to one of the saved snapshots that the virtual machine has, browsing through the snapshot tree you might have for the VM:

Selecting snapshot revert in HyperSnapshot

After reverting, reconnection is required

At the moment the client unfortunately requires administrative privileges to run (it’s actually manifested so that the Windows UAC will prompt for elevation if necessary), because the client needs write access to HKLM branch of the registry.

The server-side piece is Windows Service, which can be installed by using provided installation script. The service will run automatically and in the background, communicating with the virtual machines that have the client installed and active:

HyperSnapshot host-side service installed

Again, there’s nothing to configure or actually no need for UI at all!

Please note that HyperSnapshot has been tested mostly with the Windows 2008 R2 version of the Hyper-V (V2), but it should work just as fine with Windows 2008 version of the Hyper-V (V1).

Source, Download, explanation and more here:

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