Shut Down a VM

You might need to shut down a running VM for several different reasons. For example:

  • to free up its resources
  • to reconfigure its virtual network hardware
  • to reconfigure its virtual disk storage

You can shut down a VM via the VM’s console or using XenCenter. XenCenter provides two ways to shut down a VM:

  • A soft shutdown performs a graceful shutdown of the VM, and all running processes are halted individually.
  • A forced shutdown performs a hard shutdown and is the equivalent of unplugging a physical server. It might not always shut down all running processes and you risk losing data if you shut down a VM in this way. Only use a forced shutdown when a soft shutdown is not possible.

A VM running in HVM mode (that is, VMs without Citrix VM Tools installed) can only be shut down using a forced shutdown. To avoid this situation, install Citrix VM Tools on all HVM virtual machines. For more information, see Citrix VM Tools.

To perform a soft shutdown

Select the VM in the Resources pane and then choose Shut Down on the toolbar.

Shutdown icon - a red circle with a power icon overlaid in white.

Alternatively:

  • Right-click and click Shut Down on the Resources pane shortcut menu.
  • On the VM menu, click Shut Down.

To shut down a VM from within its floating console window, click the lifecycle icon and then click Shut Down.

Lifecycle icon. Three stacked circles: blue, green, red.

The VM’s console displays shutdown messages as running processes are stopped. When the shutdown is complete, the VM status indicator in the Resources pane changes to the stopped VM icon.

Stopped VM icon - a VM icon with a red stop icon overlaid.

To perform a forced shutdown

Select the VM in the Resources pane and then click Force Shutdown on the toolbar.

Force Shut down icon - a red circle with a white off switch icon overlaid.

Alternatively:

  • Right-click and click Force Shutdown on the Resources pane shortcut menu.
  • On the VM menu, click Force Shutdown.

To forcibly shut down a VM from within its floating console window, click the lifecycle icon and then click Force Shut Down.

Lifecycle icon. Three stacked circles: blue, green, red.

When the shutdown is complete, the VM status indicator changes to the stopped VM icon in the Resources pane.

Stopped VM icon - a VM icon with a red stop icon overlaid.