Frequently Asked Questions

For personal, non-commercial use, the user can install and run Vimalin fully licensed on 3 computers that the user owns.

For business use, the user is required to buy a copy for each computer that the user wants to install a fully licensed copy of Vimalin on.

The software comes standard with a 30 day fully functional license.

After those 30 days the software will continue to work as a FREE copy but with limited functionality. The free version will not run scheduled backups, but you can backup on demand. The other limitation is that you do not get email notifications.

Time Machine is a wonderful backup utility for many types of files. Unfortunately virtual machines are not a good match for it. Time Machine does not create reliable backups for your virtual machines. The explanation is a bit too long to put here. For the details on the reason why, please read “Why not to use Time Machine to backup your Virtual Machines“.

No extra software has to be installed in the guest OS in order to run and manage your backups.

Vimalin utilizes features offered by VMware Fusion to handle the backups on your behalf.

The worker process handles the backups. As it will work through the job queue it will process the backup jobs accordingly. In non techie speak, backups are staggered, they run one after the other. So you will not end up running two backups at the same time and have a very slow machine.

We have tested VMware Fusion 7, VMware Fusion 8.x. Earlier versions are likely to work.

Absolutely. If your virtual machine is running then Vimalin detects that the machine is running and uses VMware Fusion’s snapshot technology to make a backup that when restored will look like you suspended the virtual machine.

No, Vimalin does not mess with your computers sleep schedule. This means that it will not run a backup if you schedule it while your computer is suspended. While this might be useful for some, it would also be horrible for others. Imagine if your laptop would wake up while in a bag during travel.

Vimalin has been tested to work with VMware Fusion running on:

OS X Mavericks, OS X Yosemite, OS X El Capitan, macOS Sierra

Yes, after the trial period runs out, the program changes into the free version until you install a license. This also means that there is a commercial variant of the program that has a few more features.

If all features are free then eventually development would cease on it. Not because of desire, but because that is what has been learned from working a lot on open source software before. Free software is great, but in order to be able to dedicate time to improve it, money helps.

You can however still use Vimalin without paying for it as we believe that everybody should be able to create good backups.

Running a backup on demand and deleting/restoring your backups is part of the free features.

Scheduling backups so that they run automatically, get email notifications of the result and being able to contact support are all part of what you get when you buy a license.

But we suggest to try before you buy. You can test the full package for 30 days, just download and install. After 30 days Vimalin will revert to the free license and you can continue to use it as long as you want.

For Vimalin to work, you do not need to install anything into the guest operating system.

As a result ANY operating system that runs under VMware Fusion can be reliably backed up by Vimalin.

As you might notice if you look at the backups, then there is no .vmx file. This is by design and not to lock you out of your data.

Actually the vmx file is still there, but the file is renamed into having a .vml file extension. The reason for this is to prevent users from opening their backup directly using VMware Fusion. Besides that being a bad habit, once you do that Vimalin can no longer verify the data as it will be changed by at least a few bytes and signatures made of the files no longer match.

So even if you stop using Vimalin, you can always still recover your backups by renaming the .vml file into a .vmx file.

Yes, before copying the files of data to your backup disk, Vimalin will create a signature of your data file.

This signature is then kept in a database so that it can always be used to verify.

In fact when you restore a Virtual Machine, Vimalin will verify each copied file against that signature to make sure every bit is still the same.

Vimalin uses industry standard MD5 sum hash signatures.

If needed, you can verify the files by hand by looking at the metadata.ini file in your backup folder. Note that this file is only kept at the backup folder, not copied to your VM when you happen to restore the virtual machine.