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vmware EVC

Posted on 2012-03-23
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Last Modified: 2012-03-26
A reseller has advised me that i really need to buy new servers to utilise EVC for HA etc.

Am i really going to notice and performance issues should i stick with older non evc compatible CPU's?
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Question by:CHI-LTD
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LVL 117
ID: 37757371
HA does not use EVC, EVC is used for vMotion.
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LVL 117
ID: 37757377
what are you trying to do?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE) earned 500 total points
ID: 37757393
the issue when building Clusters with old and new servers, you use EVC mode to ensure compatible CPU instructions are used on VMs, when using vMotion between servers.

So, newer CPUs have newer instructions sets, so you select a common EVC Mode Baseline hat both your old server CPU and new CPU servers understand.

does not affect performance, but needed when you build clusters with old and new servers.
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by:CHI-LTD
ID: 37757396
sorry meant vmotion.
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by:CHI-LTD
ID: 37757405
we will use same spec but older boxes.  so no issues there then....
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LVL 117
ID: 37757408
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Expert Comment

by:PaulNSW
ID: 37757411
EVC is a setting in VMWare which allows vMotion between different generations of processors

You don't need EVC to get HA, but you need to enable EVC if you buy new servers with a different generation of processor
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LVL 117
ID: 37757414
No issues, just remember to enable EVC Mode, schedule downtime, turn ALL VMs OFF, and then Enable EVC Mode in the Cluster for ALL Servers.

EVC Mode cannot be enabled when VMs are ON!
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by:CHI-LTD
ID: 37757468
The knock-on affect of having 2x different boxes:

1. One with evc cpu and the other without evc cpu - with evc enabled means?
2. As above - witout evc enabled means?
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LVL 117
ID: 37757475
You cannot add different CPU types without EVC Enabled.

EVC is enabled on the Cluster. It's not enabled for one server or the other.
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Expert Comment

by:PaulNSW
ID: 37757479
EVC isn't a function of the CPU

It's a function of VMware

It will be either enabled for ALL hosts, allowing vMotion between different processor generations, or disabled for ALL hosts, meaning you can not vMotion between all hosts, only those with the same processor generation
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LVL 117
ID: 37757485
Enhanced vMotion Compatibility (EVC) simplifies vMotion compatibility issues across CPU generations. EVC automatically configures server CPUs with Intel FlexMigration or AMD-V Extended Migration technologies to be compatible with older servers.
 
After EVC is enabled for a cluster in the VirtualCenter inventory, all hosts in that cluster are configured to present identical CPU features and ensure CPU compatibility for vMotion. The features presented by each host are determined by selecting a predefined EVC baseline. VirtualCenter does not permit the addition of hosts that cannot be automatically configured to be compatible with the EVC baseline.
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by:CHI-LTD
ID: 37757555
OK, makes sense, i think.  

So a DL360 g5 with non EVC CPU and a DL380 G7 with EVC CPU in a cluster will not work at all for vmotion, correct?  Or will the newer server run slower with evc disabled when vmotion runs?
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by:CHI-LTD
ID: 37757561
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LVL 117
ID: 37757566
Correct.

It does not make any difference to the performance of the server.

You are just selecting the same CPU instruction set to be used across all VMs.
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ID: 37757573
Yes, that's the link I posted in http:#a37757408
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