Last Updated: February 25, 2016
· troylelandshields

Delete a royally screwed up VMWare Fusion Snapshot


I wanted to alter the size of my virtual machine's hard disk, but unfortunately according to to VMWare Fusion you need to delete any snapshots associated with the virtual machine first.

Deleting my snapshot gave me an error message that said something like this:

There was an error while trying to delete the snapshot.


Google was of little help to me because this error message was just slightly too vague. I was able to finally get it deleted so I'll share for anyone else that might have my same exact issue.


Open a terminal and go to your .vmwarevm file and cd into it. List the files and you'll see a whole bunch of files. Look specifically .vmem and .lck files with the name of the frustrating snapshot (i.e., Windows Snapshot1.vmem and Windows Snapshot1.vmem.lck). Delete the hell outta these. (Or if you want to be cautious, which might be smart, just move them to a tmp folder until you verify that everything works).

You can safely remove .vmem files (these are related to the state of the VM or something, you can read about it here: Lck files are lock files that help protect files or blah blah blah who cares?

I think the issue may have been that I had moved this VM from another machine. The .lck file was moved with it, but here on the new machine VMWare wasn't allowing me to alter the .lck file because that's it's job. I'm not sure and I don't really care to understand it that much, the point is I was finally able to obliterate the blasted snapshot.