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Virtual Machine memory allocation

Posted on 2011-02-25
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I have a server 2008 R2 SP1 runing hyper-v 12GB Physical memory. I configured my first virtual machine with 6GB of memory. When I started the VM it produced error message "Unable to allocate 6142 MB of RAM: Insufficient system resources exist to complete the requested service. (0x800705AA).
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Question by:Station2646
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by:walter_christian
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Are you running a 64 bit VM?
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by:Svet Paperov
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Are you running other virtual machines when you have this error? It seems to me that the message is quite clear: you do not have enough physical RAM available to start the VM. Remember, we cannot share the RAM between the virtual machines.

Also, are you really running SP1 of Windows Server 2008 R2? The final version of SP1 went out just several days ago. I hope this is not a new bug introduced by faulty update.

FYI, walter_christian, Windows Server 2008 R2 is 64-bit only. Also, Hyper-V have always required 64-bit version of the host OS, even with the first Windows Server 2008.      
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by:Station2646
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Yes all running is 64bit. Yes to SP1.
What isn't clear for example: if I have 12BG of physical RAM, can I set a VM to 8GB and let host use remaining 4GB. Or set 2 VM's to 4GB each and let host use remaining 4GB of RAM.
Can you help clarify?
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by:kevinhsieh
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If you have 12 GB of physical RAM, you can set a VM to use 8, and probably add another 3 VMs of 1 GB each, leaving the host with 1 GB. Hyper-V won't let you start a VM if there isn't enough memory to support it, so I have never seen a host starved of RAM. You could probably run about 11.5 GB of VMs leaving the host with 512 MB on your system in the pre-Dynamic Memory days. I haven't studied up on Dynamic Memory, so I don't know how it changes all this.
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by:Station2646
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That's what I thought. But I set the one and only VM to 6GB and it wouldn't start with error stating there isn't enough memory. ????
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by:walter_christian
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You would need to run windows enterprise in your VM in order to get the 6gb to be in play

A better option would be to install r2 sp1 and set minimum and maximum thresholds for your ram it will allow for a far better allocation of ram for your vms
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by:Station2646
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The host and virtual Machine are both 64bit Standard. Are you saying that if the VM isn't Enterprise Edition that I can't get 6GB of RAM allocated?

Also note (I should have mentioned earlier) that the VM works with 5.7GB RAM, but when set to 5.9GB or higher is errors and doesn't start.

P.S. I already owe you a 6-pack of beer for the discussion.
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by:walter_christian
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With r2 standard the limit is 32gb so you are set there but what R2 SP1 adds is the ability to allocate resources as needed rather than reserving the memory. So in reality you will set the min at 2gb and the max at 8gb (for instance), the host will allocate the RAM as requested by the VM and since you in theory will not even need the 6gb since that was what you were allocating your VM will run well and take the host resources as needed.

I have been doing research in the last couple months as I am tired of seeing my staff supporting desktops and with RDP and Wyse terminals I can leverage Hyper V as my solution and take the network to the next level so I have been waiting for this SP to release to begin the process although I am going with 4 hosts with 96 gigs of ram to service 300 users which is way overkill I will set my VMs with a min of 8gb and a max of 32gb and let my users go to town with it


hope this helps and I am a Guinness guy
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by:Station2646
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Thanks for the info - as it is still unclear why the VM would start when set to 6GB of RAM (out of 12GB).

The SP1 option of Dynamic RAM for all VM's does seem to be the best option setting for most VM. I'll keep researching and testing and keep the forum posted on any findings.

Enjoy the weekend buddy.
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by:jhindson
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I would try to create another VM and see if you receive the same error. If so, try rebooting the server. There should be no reason why you are unable to allocate 6GB to a VM when you have 12GB in the host.
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by:Station2646
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That is what I thought. I deleted the original VM, created a new VM and attached the same V-HD to the new VM. I also rebooted the host machine. Still cannot boot the VM with 6GB or more.
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by:Svet Paperov
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Do you have other VMs running on the host? I would stop them and try to start only the problem one.

Does the error you have come from the hypervisor or from Windows inside? I presume, its Hype-V’s error so deleting the original VM and creating a new one with the same VHD would not help. I would try to create a new VM without VHD or with an empty one just to verify this. If you still have the error the problem is in the hypervisor, if not, try to attach the original VHD and see what happens.

Did you install the final release of SP1 for WS 2008 or some beta? I would try to uninstall the SP1 and create a new VM without using dynamic memory allocation. I didn’t test this new SP1 yet so I can say nothing pro or con this new feature. As I sad in my first post, the error you have usually means that there is no enough physical RAM on the host to start a VM.

I hope this helps. Please keep us posted if you find a solution
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by:Station2646
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There is only one VM. The host has 12GB. Currently I have the VM set to dynamic memory. But if I set it to static and 5.8GB or more - I get the Hyper-V error message Insufficient system resources exist to complete the requested service. (0x800705AA).

I installed the final release of SP1.

I'll try the other suggestions and post back afterwards.

Thanks for your input.
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Svet Paperov earned 125 total points
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I did a small research on the error you have and I found that at least you are not alone. Here some links that you could check but I don’t see a possible solution:
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/windowsserver2008r2virtualization/thread/e54d015e-b822-4b76-8eba-357bec7862bd
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en/winserverhyperv/thread/58d2517a-04b8-4189-a50c-e56864f686d0

I have another idea – it’s a bit a long shot but still you can explore it: how much free disk space do you have on the system drive of the host server for the page file? When I set up my Hyper-V servers I did some research and, according to the memory allocation model of Hyper-V, the host OS does not share its page file with the guests VM. So I configured a really small fixed size page file on my host servers (2GB for example) just to cover the needs of the host OS (our both production servers have 24GB of RAM each). I am aware that in case of a crash of the server it will not be able to do its memory dump but I can live with this. Moreover, a memory dump of 24 GB would take several minutes and nobody except the guys in Richmond is capable of understanding it.
 
Meanwhile, I did a small test on my Hyper-V test server (the host is a Dell Precision T5400 workstation with 16GB of RAM, hardly to say a server, but still…) with a VM with 10GB of RAM and there is no problem to start. I really don’t understand why you have this error.

I hope this will help. Please, keep posting.
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by:kevinhsieh
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It could be a problem with how much space is available on the volume that holds the VM configuration. Hyper-V will create a file that mirrors the contents of RAM for the VM so that it can suspend the VM. The file is the size of the RAM allocated to the VM plus a little bit. It's possible that the volume holding the VM doesn't have more than the 5.8 GB of free space.
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by:msmamji
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Have you checked memory utilization in task manager w/o running a VM. Maybe some process/application might be taking up huge amounts of RAM
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by:Station2646
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I'm waiting for the client to allow me the time to reboot and play around with the settings. Hopefully tonight after midnight.
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by:Svet Paperov
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Is there a solution of that issue? Could we have some feedback, pls.
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by:Antikythera
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