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Snapshot is basically a copy of a disk, be it the main disk or an additional disk.

Main uses of a snapshot:

  • backup
  • static data storage. Ex: you take a public snapshot with genome data, turn it into a disk and use the data.
  • installation disk. Ex: when installing some features in Windows, it may ask for the installation DVD. There are public snapshots that can be turned into a disc and mounted as if it were a “DVD”

What is the difference between an Image and a Snapshot?

You can’t trivially turn a snapshot into a server. A more complex process of transforming a root disk snapshot into an image would be required.

For backup, we always recommend creating an Image.