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Vmware Workstation vm hogging the harddrive

Posted on 2011-09-14
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
So i have a new Lenovo w510 laptop running a 320gb drive and I7 with 8 cores with win7 64bit ultimate loaded.

I have loaded the latest vmware workstation 7.1.4.  the vm running ont he laptop is win7 ultimate 64bit. It has 2 cpu and 2gb of ram with a 35gb drive for the os.

when I run anything on the vm it hogs the drive and the host can't do anything. Just opening firefox causes the drive to hang for a 3-5secs till it opens.

Is there anything that I could do get this to preform better? I figured this laptop would preform alot better with all the power it has.

thanks
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Question by:rdefino
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LVL 125
ID: 36539616
How much memory does the host have?

I would consider using an SSD for your laptop. Laptop hard drives at 5,400 are slow, and running Hypervisors and VMs can cause bad performance.

The host is not paging out and swapping to disk, because it is low on memory.
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LVL 125
ID: 36539640
Also check the best practices document here

http://www.vmware.com/pdf/ws7_performance.pdf

A couple of things, only use 1 vCPU, and Reserve Memory for use with VMs.
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Author Comment

by:rdefino
ID: 36539645
The host has a total of 4gb, I'm getting another 4gb to add.

The vm has 2gb assigned to it.

the harddrive is a 7200 rpm.

Funny is a I have a 4yr old dual core with the same vm build and it runs much smother than this.
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LVL 125

Accepted Solution

by:
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 1000 total points
ID: 36539713
Personally I do not think you have enough ram. Host will be paging to disk, and you'll have very little memory to reserve for VMware Workstation.

I usually reserve 6GB on a 8GB Host for VMware Workstation.

The 4 year old is running Windows 7 64 bit VM with 2GB and 2vCPUs.?

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Author Comment

by:rdefino
ID: 36539744
old system had 4gb of ram. but the vm os was XP.
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LVL 125
ID: 36539765
XP 64 bit?
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LVL 125
ID: 36539772
XP does not have the same requirements as Windows 7.
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 36540023
I have a Lenovo T61p Core 2 Duo 2.4Ghz with 8Gb of memory (worked well with 4Gb of memory) and a 500Gb 7200-rpm hard drive. I have VMware Workstation 7.1.4.

I have a Vista Business 64-bit guest machine, 2CPU , 1.5Gb of memory, 100GB of disk allocated - 40Gb used.

This is roughly similar to your config except that 35Gb allocated is too small. You might wish to allocate more disk to your VM. You can use VMware Converter standalone to do this.

Check to see if you have too much overall disk fragmentation. Open the guest machine, using the VMware Tools (I do trust they are installed), shrink the guest disk. This will take a while and so backup the guest machine first.

Once the shrink has complete, move the guest folder to another machine (copy it, verify that it copied well, and delete the guest machine. Now defrag the host. Then copy the guest folder back.

See how much of your 35Gb is used at this point, and assuming there is free disk space in the allocation to run, check to see if performance increases.

I can do pretty much what I want (incuding a shrink, which is totally disk intensive) and i do not feel it in the host. I am working away here while my Vista machine is running some updates.

... Thinkpads_User
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 36557910
Hello rdefino - Any feedback?  Thanks, .... Thinkpads_User
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Author Closing Comment

by:rdefino
ID: 36582200
added ram and now it's running much netter. thanks
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