Orphaned Snapshots

When a snapshot policy includes a limit on the number of snapshots to keep, Cloudera Manager checks the total number of stored snapshots each time a new snapshot is added, and automatically deletes the oldest existing snapshot if necessary.

When a snapshot policy is edited or deleted, files, directories, or tables that were removed from the policy may leave "orphaned" snapshots behind that are not deleted automatically because they are no longer associated with a current snapshot policy. Cloudera Manager never selects these snapshots for automatic deletion because selection for deletion only occurs when the policy creates a new snapshot containing those files, directories, or tables.

You can delete snapshots manually through Cloudera Manager or by creating a command-line script that uses the HDFS or HBase snapshot commands. Orphaned snapshots can be hard to locate for manual deletion. Snapshot policies automatically receive the prefix cm-auto followed by a globally unique identifier (GUID). You can locate all snapshots for a specific policy by searching for t the prefix cm-auto-guid that is unique to that policy.

To avoid orphaned snapshots, delete snapshots before editing or deleting the associated snapshot policy, or record the identifying name for the snapshots you want to delete. This prefix is displayed in the summary of the policy in the policy list and appears in the delete dialog box. Recording the snapshot names, including the associated policy prefix, is necessary because the prefix associated with a policy cannot be determined after the policy has been deleted, and snapshot names do not contain recognizable references to snapshot policies.