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Vmware SMP

Posted on 2009-07-05
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Hi

I have downloaded the free version of ESXi, and activated my copy.
I installed the vmware on my 2 * 2.50 Quad Core blade server, and configured by linux machine to use 8 Virtual CPU... when I try to power the virtual machine, I get the following error:
there are insufficient licenses to complete this operation. Feature vsmp not licensed, requires 8 have 4..

What does that mean? And how I can use my 8 Virtual CPU?
What is the advantage of using all the available Virtual CPU, and what the impact on perfomance... Does the virutal CPU reflects the physical CPU?


thanks
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Question by:nammari
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8 Comments
 
LVL 21

Expert Comment

by:za_mkh
ID: 24779128
8 Way SMP is only supported for Enterprise Plus licences, otherwise the default it 4 vCPUs.
 
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Author Comment

by:nammari
ID: 24779130
Thanks for your answer... But what the SMP stands for? And how does that impact the performance?
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LVL 21

Expert Comment

by:za_mkh
ID: 24779135
That wasn't too clear. You will need to purchase an Enterprise Plus Licence to have 8 way SMP. But believe me, you won't be doing too shabby with a 4 vCPU system. In fact sometimes, even a 2vCPU system will perform better then a 4vCPU system. Let the ESX scheduler distributed the processing load amongst all your physical cores.
http://www.vmware.com/products/vsphere/buy/editions_comparison.html
 
 
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Author Comment

by:nammari
ID: 24779142
Thanks for your quick answers.
As for the scheduler distribution of physical cores, shall I configure that, or it is already configured?
One more thing, what is "Thin provisioning"
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LVL 21

Expert Comment

by:za_mkh
ID: 24779143
SMP merely allows load to be shared between all the CPU's that your operating system sees. Even if you gave your VM 1vCPU but it was sitting on a 8 Core Host server, the VM would see one CPU but it's processing load would be distributed amongst all 8 physical cores, hence me saying that sometimes giving 8vCPU's to a machine with only 8 cores is not going to give you the best performance sometimes it detracts from it. My personal experience is that I don't give any VM more than 2 vCPUS as my reasoning is that the ESX scheduler distributes the load generated by your VM guests amongst the physical cores anyway ...
 
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Accepted Solution

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za_mkh earned 2000 total points
ID: 24779158
The scheduler doesn't really get configured. Resource pools can be used to give say for example some VM's more processing power/memory/disk shares than another VM. The scheduler than ensures it gets met. For the most part you don't even need to worry about this, unless you have major problems. ESX by itself does a great job.
 
 
Let's say you have a 200GB VMFS volume. Now we create a VM. When we create this VM, we thin provision the disks. Previously the normal method was to thick provision the disk. So if you configured a VM with 50GB of disk space, on your VMFS volume you would be left with 150GB (this is simplistic explanation that doesn not count space used for memory/swap/snapshot files etc). From inside your VM you only write 10GB of data on that 50GB drive. Let says it never exceeds 10GB. So now tecnically you have 'wasted' 40GB of space of your VMFS volume.
With thin provisioning you set up your disk to be 50GB again. But your virtual disk will only grow by they amount of data that is written to it. So in this case, you will be left with 190GB of free space on your VMFS volume. But if in your VM you now add another 15GB of data, the disk will get increased automatically on your VMFS volume.
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Author Comment

by:nammari
ID: 24779251
Excellent
Now, if the datastore is already created as Thick, can I change it to thin?

thanks
Rami
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LVL 21

Expert Comment

by:za_mkh
ID: 24779993
The datastore is always provisioned thick. It's the VMDKs (assigned to the VM's that can be thin provisioned)
In case somebody else mentions ... I know you can thin provision SAN volumes ... but that is not what the original poster is asking about.
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