Please rephrase all the above text. I think you are calling a TemplateVM ambiguously for TemplateVMs and for AppVMs that are Templates for disposables.
When I create an AppVM with whonix-ws-16 as the TemplateVM then the AppVM has its default DispVM set to whonix-ws-16-dvm
When I create an AppVM …
as the TemplateVM.
If I then clone whonix-ws-16 and use the clone as the TemplateVM, the AppVM does not have its default DispVM set to whonix-ws-16-dvm.
I don’t have time to play around with my system too much but in my case the default DispVM is being set to none (which happens to be my default global setting).
Well, because it is based on a different template? Why would it use the previous one as base?
What concerns me most about this is that it implies cloning a TemplateVM is not creating a perfect replica. What else in the system could possibly be impacted by this I wonder?
This question is Qubes specific, not Qubes-Whonix.
Anyway, new templates acquire the default DispVM and it can’t possibly have a AppVM that is a Template for Disposables that the AppVM is based on the TemplateVM, if the TemplateVM was just cloned.
You see the logic? The child AppVM does not exist yet because the parent TemplateVM was just born.
So yes, you have to manually set the disposable to another one if you want.
Also TemplateVMs normally do not use a a DispVM that is on the field
default_dispvm when you run
qvm-prefs whonix-ws-16 default_dispvm. For updates, the TemplateVMs use the disposable that is set by
qvm-prefs whonix-ws-16 management_dispvm. Of course you can open the template default disposable with
qvm-open-in-dvm, buy you most probably will never use that.
Summary, the only setting I believe is not cloned as you expected is the default_dispvm, but it assumes safe value using the Global disp vm.