Does splitting Vmware machines on multiple disks improve performance?

Posted on 2010-08-18
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-05-10
If you are planning to install multiple vmware machines would it be better to install each machine on a dedicated partition/volume?

For instance I would create a G, H, I, J and K drive and install each vm under each drive vs. installing all 5 vm's on just G.

Does anyone have documentation from vmware that this is a good practice?

Question by:gdirect

Expert Comment

by:Steve M
ID: 33468348
If the vm's are located on different disks then there could be an advantage, if they are just different partitions on the same disk then no there would be no advantage at all.
LVL 88

Expert Comment

ID: 33468401
The most performance you'd get is using a RAID 10 array with as many disks as possible.
LVL 28

Expert Comment

ID: 33468413
Yes - what isk-ck said. It would be even better if you could stripe your I/O across physical disks. If you are planning a large number of vms to be employed it might be wise to invest in a RAID controller for your host.

In general - the more spindles available to handle a workload the better the performance will be.

What flavor of VMware are you running? Workstation? VMware Server?

Good Luck
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Expert Comment

by:M. Rashel Ahmed
ID: 33468998
of course installing in different drive is more secure and RAID 10 array option is a creative idea.


Author Comment

ID: 33469799
I'm running RAID 5 and using VMware Server edition.   There will be 4 vm instances installed with OS Win 2003.   If I just install all 4 vm's on one physical partition that wouldn't impact performance?

Here's something that recently caught my attention.

Look at number 4.
LVL 28

Expert Comment

ID: 33469833
If running raid 5 should be no problem - data will be striped across all disks in the raid set. You will pay a small penalty for writes (parity calculation) but reads would be excellent.

raid 10 (mirror + striping) will be your best performance - but you give up 50% of your available disk space.

I use raid 5 for everything except database logs, raid 10 for those

Good Luck

Accepted Solution

Steve M earned 1000 total points
ID: 33469917
Yup, raid 5 is fine - you then are using multiple spindles.  the article you point to does mention putting vm's on different disks, that is in effect happening here as raid 5 is made up of many disks.  The article also states raid 5 is good and that's what you have.

Put them all on one partition on your RAID 5 array and you'll be rockin.


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