VM crashing

ExileD-GoD
ExileD-GoD used Ask the Experts™
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Hello experts!

I have just started working in a new company and I have just discovered some problems,
First all, there is a HP Proliant DL 380 G4 (2x Intel Xeon 3.2) which is being used as a ESXi 4.1 host.
Second, there are two VMs configured with free license (so I am very restricted by now). One of these VMs is File Server (50 users) and it has been crashing for about 2 weeks.
Then I saw that both VMs are configured with 4 vCPUs. I know that there is no 1:1 relation between vcpu and pcpu but I presume this server has 2 cores.
Is there any possibility of this server is crashing due to "overload of vcpus"? I know that the configuration maximum is 25 vcpus per core or something like that but anyway looks like it has been running since December 2010 and it wasnt cashing until now.
Nothing was installed as far as I know and no changed was applied...
The OS of this VM is a Win2k3 Enterprise...

Thanks in advance,
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
Just to give you the heads up the HP Proliant DL380 G4 is not on the Hardware Compatibility List for ESXi 4.1.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
So you may experience issues using it with ESX/ESXi 4.1. It seems to work "okay" with ESXi/ESX 4.0, but it's not very stable with ESXi 4.1, in our experience.

Does the VM actually require 4 vCPUs, vSMP can make a VM slower, due to the scheduling with vSMP.

It's possible.
VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017
Commented:
The Xeon 3.2GHz, does not have any cores. It's a Hyperthreading processor.

It does support Hyperthreading, so if Hyperthreading is enabled, you may have 4 x 3.2GHz Logical CPUs, that can be used. (4 vCPUs).

4 vCPUs seems a little over kill, and often admin's get carried away with adding virtual processors, because they can, I would suggest reducing to a single vCPU, and checking performance, if required add another.

vSMP is only going to work with applications that support it.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
VMware vSphere: The CPU Scheduler in VMware ESX 4.1 VMware vSphere 4.1 whitepaper

http://www.vmware.com/files/pdf/techpaper/VMW_vSphere41_cpu_schedule_ESX.pdf

Author

Commented:
Awww great...now the problem with hardware compatibility...looks like I have a big problem...
Well, I really like your answers hanccocka and I will read those documentation and change to 1 vcpu and to test performance...
There´s just one information you posted that I am in doubt...you told me that this processor supports HT but I did take a look at this (http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=27083) and it says that it doesnt have...so what is correct?
Thanks!
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
The link I looked at for the Xeon 3.2, stated HT.

Well if you processor doesn't have HT, you are in serious trouble as the Virtual Machine is seriosuly over subscribbed! You only have 2 Phyiscal Processors. e.g. 2 x 3.2GHz.

It could have been a different sPec Xeon I looked at, check the Server, does it state Hyperthreading enabled!

and does is show 4 x 3.2 or 2 x 3.2?
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
Okay, there is no HT on the Xeon Processors used in the DL380G4. (as standard).

But check Host Summary, as to what you definately have.

But I would still recommended changing to 1 vCPU, and up only if necessary. Based on Perfmon and Server monitoring of CPU.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
HP ProLiant 380 G4 Dual Processor 3.2GHz
This is what it may look like.

Author

Commented:
Yeah...it is exactly like you showed...2 x Intel Xeon 3.2 Ghz
So....I am in serious trouble with 2 VMs over subscribbed in a hardware which is incompatible with the VMware version...
Thanks for all the info again...l´ll change to vcpu after the workday and see if it helps..

Author

Commented:
Well I did change to 1 vCPU and it is running fine until now. I think I´ll wait 2 or 3 days and see how it reacts.
I´ve noticed that backup is running slightly faster too (it has a netbackup client installed on it).
I didnt imagine changing vCPU would affect windows´ time.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
yes, it's the vSMP scheduler.

Author

Commented:
OK looks like no problems until now.
I am closing this question and in case the problem happens again I´ll reopen it.
Thanks hanccocka.

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