1. Install Plesk

    Create a clean installation of Plesk. For instructions, see Installing Plesk for Windows Using Installer Console.

  2. Configure Plesk

    Configure Plesk exactly the way you wish the cloned instances to appear. It may include the following:

  3. Prepare for Cloning

    Use the %plesk_cli%\cloning.exe --update -prepare-public-image true command to prepare a Plesk instance for cloning. You may also choose to configure certain additional options:

    • Preserve the initial configuration

      By default, the cloning.exe command will reset the configuration parameters of the instance: each cloned instance will have to be configured anew. Use -reset-init-conf false to preserve the initial configuration during cloning.

    • Reset the license

      Optionally, you may choose to remove the product license during cloning, so it is not copied throughout the cloned instances. Use -reset-license true to accomplish that.

    • Disable updates after cloning

      After the cloned instance is started, the availability of updates for the current version is checked explicitly and the updates are installed if necessary. Installation of updates is working under the same rules as in daily maintenance task. Updates installation can be disabled if option -skip-update true is passed while cloning.

    When IP pool reconfiguration is enabled, each time the server with Plesk is restarted, it will rediscover the IP addresses and reconfigure its IP pool accordingly. Use this when the virtual servers are allocated IP addresses dynamically. You may skip this step if the virtual servers you want to copy Plesk onto use static IP addresses. Also, omitting this option will make Plesk start faster because Plesk will not have to reconfigure its IP pool on each startup.

    %plesk_cli%\ipmanage.exe --auto-remap-ip-addresses true

    For detailed information on the cloning utility, see cloning.exe: Server Cloning Settings.

  4. Create a Snapshot

    If your software for managing virtual machines supports creating copies of virtual machines, which is normally true, stop (shut down) the virtual machine and create the image copy. Otherwise, if images copying is unavailable, you should use a special shutdown call that resets some instance data and then copy the machine by available means. The shutdown is performed by the following command from the command prompt (Cmd.exe):

    sysprep /oobe /generalize /shutdown

Note: When preparing a Plesk instance for cloning, avoid restarting the psa service and shutting down the virtual machine on which the instance is installed.

Example: Preparing a Plesk for Windows instance for cloning

The following command prepares Plesk for cloning by resetting sensitive data and product license while preserving the results of the post-install configuration, and disabling automatic updates.

%plesk_cli%\cloning.exe --update -prepare-public-image true -reset-init-conf false -reset-license true -skip-update true