Sometimes we got confused about difference between
clone and template. So I consolidated all and representing here for you. hope
you will like it.

 

Clone

Template

Clone creates an  exact copy of a running Virtual
Machine  at the time of cloning
process

Template acts as a baseline image with the predefined
configuration  as per organization
standards

Cloning a virtual machine creates a exact duplicate
copy of the virtual machine with the same configuration and installed software
without performing any additional settings.

Create a template to create a master image of
a virtual machine from which you can deploy multiple virtual
machines

You can create a  clone of existing installed and
Configured running virtual machine by right clicking  the VM and
Clone.

You can create a template by converting a virtual
machine

VM clones are best suited in test and development
environments where you want to create, test and work with exact copies of
production servers without disturbing production servers by creating clone of
the production virtual machine.

Templates are best suited for production environments
where you want the mass deployment of virtual machines along with the installed
OS and basic software, configured policy as per the security policy of your
organization as a base Machine. Once template is deployed, you can install
software depend on the role of the server like
IIS,Database

VM Clones are not suited for mass deployment of Virtual
Machines

Templates are best suited for Mass Deployment of
Virtual Machines

We Cannot Convert back the Cloned
Machine

You can convert the template back to virtual machine to
update the base template with the latest released patches and updates and to
install or upgrade any software and again convert back to template to be used
for deployment of virtual machines with latest
patches.

Cloned Virtual Machine Can be powered
on

Templates cannot be powered
on

You cannot Clone a Virtual Machine if you have
connected directly to ESX/ESXi host using vSphere
Client

You cannot create a template  of a Virtual Machine
if you have connected directly to ESX/ESXi host using vSphere
Client

You can customize the guest operating system of the
clone to change the virtual machine name, network settings, and other
properties. This prevents conflicts that can occur if a virtual machine and a
clone with identical guest operating system settings are deployed
simultaneously.

You can also Customize the guest operating system while
deploying from template

Clone  of a virtual machine can be created when
the virtual machine is powered on

Convert virtual Machine to template cannot be
performed, when Virtual machine is powered on.  Only Clone to Template can
be performed when VM is powered
on

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