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VMworld gathering / vbeers / vstorage / social networking

October 18, 2011 Leave a comment

For those of you who are attending the VMworld 2011 in Copenhagen, please feel free to drop by at the Hard Rock Café located at København (city center) for some gathering.

The purpose of this gathering is discuss topics around IT, specially storage and virtualization , and to, off course, do some social networking.. After all IT people are above all : real life persons with life beyond IT.

So  feel free to drop by starting at 18.30 (i will wait at least until 20H) for some chat, beers and snacks…To make things easier i will have my VMworld badge on top of the table, so don’t be shy and just introduce yourself !
To make things even easier, here’s a map from Google and one from Hard Rock Café itself .

 

Hope to see you soon

Bruno | @bsousapt

VMworld Europe 2011 – Day zero

October 17, 2011 Leave a comment

So finally i got my chance to attend a VMworld event , and i got the opportunity to go to the Copenhagen , Denmark.

I hope that during the event i will be able to chat with IT vendors and IT peers regarding virtualization and everything around IT, because virtualization is just part of the “big picture”.

For instance i look forward to discuss real life experiences in databases (Oracle/MS SQL) virtualization, with all their advantages or lack off..

Since i had never been into a VMworld before i really don’t know exactly what to expect, but i do know that i will try to get as much technical information as possible and to meet quite some really smart folks that “orbit” around the VMware/VMworld ecosystem.

As i start to attend the event itself i will try to update informations regarding the sessions and the event itself, so stay tuned aKa bookmark this page and came back later 🙂

For now, it’s time to get another dose of some medicines, because the flu decided to come along with me to this event…

@bsousapt

VMware 4.1 – Dell OpenManage Offline Bundle and VIB for ESXi installation script

September 27, 2011 1 comment

Dear reader,

If you ever wondered how to install Dell Openmanage agents in a VMware host only by executing a simple script, fear no more..It’s possible, it’s quite simple and i will show you how 😉

I recently had to install 7 physical hosts [Dell R515] with VMware ESXi 4.1 Update 1 and for that i come up with a very small and easy script to install Dell Openmanage agents.

For this task i just had to download the Dell OpenManage Offline Bundle and VIB for ESXi , create a local directory [c:\vmware] and run my script.

Please be aware that you need to have installed the VMware Vsphere CLI [ i used version 4.1] and in my case i installed in a 64Bits machine.

The script does the following :

  1. set’s the physical host in maintenance mode
  2. installs the Dell OpenManage Offline Bundle VIB
  3. brings the physical host out from the maintenance mode

To make life easier i have zipped the Dell OpenManage Offline Bundle VIB together with the script and you download it here Dell OpenManage Offline Bundle and VIB for ESXi . Please make sure you rename the file from .doc to .zip [wordpress doesn’t allow to upload zip files] and extract it to c:\vmware and not c:\vmware\vmware .

At the end you should be able to see the hardware status within the vSphere client .

Script contents  # START #

#Set the physical host in Maintenance Mode

cd “C:\Program Files (x86)\VMware\VMware vSphere CLI\bin\”
vicfg-hostops.pl –operation enter –server=your_vmware_host_ip –username=root –password=yourpassword

## Install OpenManage Agent – Dell OpenManage Offline Bundle and VIB for ESXi

cd c:\vmware

vihostupdate.pl –install –bundle C:\VMware\OM-SrvAdmin-Dell-Web-6.4.0-1266.VIB-ESX41i_A00.7.zip –server=your_vmware_host_ip  –username=root –password=yourpassword

#exit maintenance mode
cd “C:\Program Files (x86)\VMware\VMware vSphere CLI\bin\”

vicfg-hostops.pl –operation exit –server=your_vmware_host_ip –username=root –password=yourpassword

Script contents  # END #

VMware 5.0 Disk I/O performance – Thick Provision Lazy Zeroed vs Thick Provision Eager Zeroed vs Thin Provision

August 25, 2011 8 comments

Hello dear reader,

As you know VMware has announced some time ago the vsphere 5  and finally it can be downloaded by anyone 🙂

Based on this i decided to test the performance of the 3 types of disks supported by VMware :

Basically the VM had 2 virtual disks assigned for the benchmark :

  • Thick Provision Lazy Zeroed
  • Thick Provision Eager Zeroed
  • Thin Provision

Test setup :

One VM has been configured with 2 vcpu’s, 2 GB ram and 4 disks, all using the LSI SAS SCSI Controller :

  • Disk 01 is the Windows “disk”  (c:\ drive)
  • Disk 02 it’s a Thick Provision Lazy Zeroed disk
  • Disk 03 it’s a Thick Provision Eager Zeroed disk
  • Disk 04 it’s a Thin Provision disk

The VM had 1 Gigabit link without any sort of redundancy, link aggregation, no MPIO , no jumbo frames to an ISCSI storage. The purpose of this exercise is to see the performance differences between the 3 types of disks and not to see the performance of the ISCSI storage .

Anyway….let’s go for the results

Results : ( results parsed at http://vmktree.org/iometer/ )

  •     I/O of a Thick Provision Lazy Zeroed disk
Test name Latency Avg iops Avg MBps cpu load
Max Throughput-100%Read 0.00 3491 109 3%
RealLife-60%Rand-65%Read 12.87 4490 25 11%
Max Throughput-50%Read 101.44 6190 193 15%
Random-8k-70%Read 13.96 5681 44 17%
  • I/O of a Thick Provision Eager Zeroed disk
Test name Latency Avg iops Avg MBps cpu load
Max Throughput-100%Read 0.00 3511 109 1%
RealLife-60%Rand-65%Read 12.78 4460 34 30%
Max Throughput-50%Read 102.88 6261 195 2%
Random-8k-70%Read 14.19 5770 45 34%
  • I/O of a Thin Provision disk
Test name Latency Avg iops Avg MBps cpu load
Max Throughput-100%Read 0.00 3530 110 0%
RealLife-60%Rand-65%Read 13.06 4566 35 30%
Max Throughput-50%Read 102.36 6243 195 2%
Random-8k-70%Read 14.17 5767 45 36%

Conclusion :

It seems like VMware has quite similar performance across different types of disks (at least with the used benchmark profile for this test) and for me the Thin Provision disk would probably be the chosen one due to the fact of being…Thin .

During the next days/weeks i will try to get some more tests, against different storage devices and using ISCSI and NFS .

vSphere 5.0 Download available

August 25, 2011 Leave a comment

Well well well…it looks like vSphere 5.0 is , finally, available for download.

Check it out at www.vmware.com and have fun !

How MPIO can be used and help you….[with video and no sound]

July 8, 2011 2 comments

As a IT guy i often (more than i like) struggle to understand all the nice acronyms that IT vendors come up with , and what those can do for my business / mental health 🙂

A quite common term in storage design it’s MPIO , that basically means that a server has 2 (or more) network links (either fiber , iscsi, FCoE , whatever…) to access a disk hosted within a SAN .

Based on my experience there are many folks out there that don’t understand exactly what this technique can do, so i created a small demo to try to show off what MPIO is and why it’s important…

This demo is done with a Windows 2008 R2 VM hosted in VMware ESXi 4.1 Update 1 and connected to a Dell Equallogic PS6000 SAN. The MPIO concept should be valid to any other type of system…But please test your environment before you go live !

Hope you can enjoy it…


VMware I/O performance – LSI SAS SCSI controller vs Paravirtual SCSI controller

July 7, 2011 Leave a comment

VMware LSI SAS SCSI controller vs VMware Paravirtual SCSI controller I/O benchmarks

Basically the VM had 2 virtual disks assigned for the benchmark :

  1. Disk E is a thick virtual disk added from VMware. This vmdk resides on a SAS based datastore using the VMware LSI SAS SCSI Controller;
  2. Disk G is a thick virtual disk added from VMware. This vmdk resides on a SAS based datastore using the VMware Paravirtual SCSI Controller;

Results : ( results parsed at http://vmktree.org/iometer/ )

  •     I/O using the VMware  LSI SAS Controller
Test name Latency Avg iops Avg MBps cpu load
Max Throughput-100%Read 0.00 7183 224 26%
RealLife-60%Rand-65%Read 12.05 4208 32 10%
Max Throughput-50%Read 111.94 6833 213 26%
Random-8k-70%Read 9.38 3817 29 9%
  • I/O using the VMware Paravirtual SCSI controller
Test name Latency Avg iops Avg MBps cpu load
Max Throughput-100%Read 0.00 7245 226 24%
RealLife-60%Rand-65%Read 14.79 5156 40 14%
Max Throughput-50%Read 113.94 6947 217 24%
Random-8k-70%Read 12.48 5079 39 10%

Conclusion :

There’s a slight performance boost from the paravirtual controller and for some environments this can be quite a good thing..

However the “generic” emulated SCSI controller can also deliver a good performance !

Environment configuration details :

VMware Infrastructure configuration :

  • VMware ESXi 4.1 Update 1
  • Dell R515 with 2 sockets AMD Opteron 4180 (2.6GHz) with 64GB
  • Equallogic PS6000 with 15 600GB 15K rpm SAS disks with 1 volume assigned to the VM and one provisioned as a datastore within VMware
  • iscsi switches based on 2 Dell PowerConnect 6224 stacked
  • 2 networks configured within VMware to access the Equallogic . Each network has 2 Intel 82576 gigabit cards allocated.
  • Jumbo frames are enabled on Equallogic, switches, vswitches

Client configuration :

  • Windows 2008 R2 (64bits) Enterprise Edition
  • 2 vCPU
  • 2GB memory
  • 2 virtual network cards assigned for storage traffic , based on VMXNET3 , with Jumbo Frames enabled on the OS
  • Dell Equallogic Host Integration Tools installed and MPIO enabled
  • I/O benchmark done with IOMeter (1.1.0-rc1-win64.x86_64) using the OpenPerformanceTest.icf file .
  • For extra results check out  the VMware unofficial storage performance thread