Deprecate a custom image

Compute Engine lets you deprecate a custom image that you own by setting the deprecation status on the image. Each deprecation status causes a different response from the server, helping you transition users away from unsupported images in a manageable way. Use the Google Cloud console, the Google Cloud CLI, or the Compute Engine API method to deprecate an image.

Deprecation states

The following deprecation states are supported:

  • ACTIVE: the image is active and can be used as normal. Image families point to the most recent and active image in a family.
  • DEPRECATED: the image is marked deprecated but can still be used to create a VM. New links to this image are allowed. Image families no longer point to this image even if it is the most recent image in the family.

    If you create a VM with a deprecated image using the Google Cloud CLI, the request succeeds with a warning.

  • OBSOLETE: the image is marked obsolete and is no longer available for use. An error message is returned if you try to use this image in a request. Existing links to this image are still allowed.

  • DELETED: this image is deleted. An error message is returned if you try to use a deleted image.

You can revert a deprecation (make an image active again), by changing the deprecation state to ACTIVE.

Before you begin

Deprecate a custom image


  1. In the Google Cloud console, go to the Images page.

    Go to Images

  2. For the image you want to deprecate, click Actions.

  3. Select Deprecate.

  4. For state, select either Deprecated or Obsolete. For more information about states, see Deprecation states.

  5. Optional: Specify a replacement image.

  6. Click Deprecate Image.


Use the gcloud compute images deprecate command to set the deprecation status of an image.

gcloud compute images deprecate IMAGE_NAME \
    --state STATE \
    --replacement REPLACEMENT

Replace the following:

  • IMAGE_NAME: the name of the image to deprecate
  • STATE: the deprecation state
  • REPLACEMENT: the image to replace the one that is deprecated


Make a POST request to the images().deprecate method. Specify the name of the image you want to deprecate.


  "state": "STATE",
  "replacement": "REPLACEMENT"

Replace the following:

  • PROJECT_ID: the project to which the image belongs.
  • RESOURCE_ID: the name of the image that you are deprecating.
  • STATE: the deprecation state of this resource.
  • REPLACEMENT: the image to replace the one that is deprecated.