Snapshots are images generated from any block storage that have already been provisioned. You can use snapshots on any block storage type, regardless of the storage type from which the snapshot was created.

You can also use snapshots for other storages. This feature is useful, for example, if you want to quickly roll out multiple Virtual Machines (VMs) with the same or similar configuration or when you need a recovery point.

You can create snapshots from provisioned Hard Disk Drive (HDD) and Solid-State Drive (SSD) storages, regardless of the underlying storage type (HDD or SSD). After creation, a snapshot utilizes the complete HDD storage space assigned to your IONOS account. Therefore, ensure that you have enough HDD quotas available before you create a snapshot.

A snapshot covers the entire capacity of the block storage device. It will also contain the volume part with no data written to it. For example, if you have a block storage with a volume of 100GiB containing 10GiB of data written to it and the remaining volume is empty, the snapshot will still be for the entire 100GiB volume. Consequently, a new block storage volume must at least be the same size as the snapshot. If the new block storage volume is large, you may need to extend the partition manually after booting the VMs and mounting the respective volume to the VM.

Snapshots are not incremental. Each snapshot is a separate instance representing the state of the source block storage device during the snapshot creation.

Snapshots can be shared with groups so that the users in that specific group can receive access to the snapshot. However, snapshots are limited to use only at the data center location where they were originally created. They can be utilized in several Virtual Data Centers (VDCs) as long as they operate at the exact data center location as the snapshot creation.

Snapshots have no usage quota and can be used as often as you want. Furthermore, snapshots do not have a retention period; hence, they are not deleted automatically.

Security Advice: Snapshots are stored within the exact location of the block storage volume. Using the IONOS Backup Service solution, you can create redundancy by having your data backed up in different locations. Alternatively, you could also use a S3-capable storage solution and back up your data to any IONOS S3 Object Storage.


Only contract administrators, owners, and users with the Create Snapshot permission can create a snapshot. Ensure that you have the necessary permission and sufficient memory available.

Snapshot authentication

You can create snapshots from provisioned block storage volumes only. It includes the authentication you specified during the creation of the snapshot. IONOS does not modify snapshots at any time. If you want to change the authentication configurations, we recommend doing it before reusing the snapshot on a new block storage device.

Create a Snapshot

You can create snapshots from any provisioned block storage, regardless of the underlying storage type. After creation, a snapshot utilizes the complete HDD storage space assigned to your IONOS account. Therefore, ensure that you have enough HDD quotas available before you create a snapshot.

The VM can be switched on or off when creating a snapshot. If you want to ensure that data that is still in the RAM of the VM is included in the snapshot, it is recommended that you synchronize the data (with sync under Linux) or shut down the guest operating system (with shutdown -h now under Linux) before creating the snapshot.

To create a snapshot, follow these steps:

  1. Open the required data center.

  2. (Optional) Shut down the server. Creating a snapshot while the server is running takes longer.

  3. Open the context menu of the storage element and select Create Snapshot.

  4. (Optional) Change the name and the description of the snapshot.

  5. Click Create Snapshot to start the process.

Result: The snapshot is created and can be access from the following locations:

  • Menu > Management > Images & Snapshots > Snapshot tab.

  • My own Images > Snapshots.

Delete a Snapshot

If you no longer need a snapshot and want to save your resources, you can delete it. You cannot restore a snapshot after it is deleted.

To delete a snapshot, follow these steps:

  1. Log in to the DCD with your username and password.

  2. Go to Menu > Management > Images & Snapshots.

  3. Open the Snapshots tab and select the snapshot you would like to delete.

  4. Click Delete.

  5. In the dialog that appears, confirm your action by entering your password and clicking OK.

Result: The selected item is deleted and cannot be restored.

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