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VMWare 4.x+ and busy SQL Server production - any case studies

Posted on 2011-09-23
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On the web, there is mixed opinion on putting busy sql server on VM environment. (slow testing environments- no problems)..

there is places where the products stated where with vmware less than 4 versions.. is there any case study of implentations of VMWare latest editions (4+) on production databases and what the results were?

thanks
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Question by:25112
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 668 total points
ID: 36587517
This is the Best Practice Guide
http://communities.vmware.com/docs/DOC-8964

But it's like ANY Server you virtualise, to test and make sure it is suitable for virtualisation. Many organisations have SQL servers virtualised.

http://blogs.vmware.com/vmtn/2007/11/white-paper-sql.html
http://scottf.wordpress.com/2007/02/09/sql-server-on-vmware-server/
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by:dba2dba
dba2dba earned 664 total points
ID: 36589718
IMO there will surely be some performance hit by moving to a virtual environment.

However, Disk IO seems to be an important aspect to consider. You can get separate LUNs from storage for various database files inorder to have better IO performance.

Below is an interesting blog post:

http://matthensley.wordpress.com/2010/05/16/best-practices-and-considerations-for-virtualizing-microsoft-sql-server-on-vmware/

http://www.vmware.com/files/pdf/sql_server_virt_bp.pdf

Thanks,
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by:wjvanaacken
wjvanaacken earned 668 total points
ID: 36817147
We have a large SQL install for a well known ERP.  The environment of the SQL server is:
- VMware ESXi 4.1 latest patches
- Host is quad quad core with 128GB, 10Gb FCoE for network and data
- VM has 13 hard drives (VMDks) on 10 LUNs connected using all 4 SCSI controllers, 48GB RAM 100% reserved, 8 vCPUs,
- Windows 2008 (non-SP1... trying to get development team to allow/test SP1)
- SQL 2008 with main single database configured into 8 segments allowing for SQL parallelism

Tips:
- Spread I/O load across all 4 SCSI controllers
- Reserve 100% of RAM (asuming Tier 1 server)
- Watch I/O load on SAN.  The 10 LUNs are across 60 spindles and will be moving to SSD within 3 months.
- Keep in mind VMDK locks (we use 1 logical drive per VMDK) and LUN level locks
- Look to get to ESXi 5 soon based on a LOT of storage improvements!
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by:25112
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thanks
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