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Measuring Hardware Performance for Windows Multipoint 2012

Posted on 2013-11-06
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Last Modified: 2013-11-21
I have just start thinking on converting some small business clients to Windows Multipoint Server 2012, more for the virtual desktop images so each user will have your own separate image stored at server level, I was wondering if someone here can give me some ideas and tips on what to look for, also how would I measure the hardware necessary to run virtual desktop images and not just ordinary server instances, I would assume that virtual desktop images would required way more from the server than just an ordinary session would take. I would appreciate some good histories and also what others have been able to accomplish with this technology. I just think that this will hit huge in a couple of years as terminal services still have many limitations.

Cheers
-jdff
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE) earned 500 total points
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By using VDI, you can gain a better user experience, if this is necessary for your users.

As for a hosting server, you will need a server, withj plenty of Physical CPU Cores and Memory, to host the virtual desktops, and also fast disk access e.g. SSDs

We've had many issues in this area with VDI deployments, when using conventional storage, either local SAS or SAN based storage. For our VDI deployments we now use Fusion-IO products (SSD) based, to save on electricity, air conditioning, the expensive of SAN deployment, and help us with "VDI storms". e.g. big slowdowns that can occur when a lot of users log into the system at the same time.

Once users boot up, log in and load applications, the storage I/O typically settles down to a minimal level. The IOPS difference between a desktop VM that is booting and after it has booted is extreme, which can make architecting storage for VDI environments a challenge. A typical desktop VM running Windows 7 will generate from 50-100 IOPS while is it booting; once it is running normal workloads, the average IOPS drops to about 5-10. Therefore, to successfully meet the I/O demands caused by boot storms, your storage needs to be designed to handle the worst-case scenario.

We've been using and deploying/implenting Fusion-IO products since 2008/2009, Fusion-IO have come along way, and now their products are OEM and rebranded by HP and Dell.

We have been using the IO-DriveDuo 640GB, sized accordingly for the number of VDI desktops required.

http://www.fusionio.com/products/iodrive-duo/

FusionIO IO-DriveDuo 640GB
(~200,000 IOPS and >800MB/s throughput per card)

As for servers, we use a Dell R810 - 128GB 24 Cores - 80 to 100 Concurrent VMs per host

This is hosting Windows 7 64 bit, 2 vCPUs and 2GB of memory, and we are now rolling out desktop VMs with 4 and 8GB of RAM.

See these articles

you will need to create a login for the first one, but it compares the different vdi solutions available from Microsoft, Citrix, Quest and VMware.

http://www.pqr.com/images/stories/Downloads/whitepapers/vdi%20smackdown.pdf

http://www.wtslabs.com/Downloads/TSAtoZ.pdf

So in summary, you will need a server with

1. Adequate Memory, so if you want to host 20 Windows 7 Desktops with 8GB, that's at least 8 x 20GB = 160GB of memory for a server at least.

2. Adequate CPU, add up the cores requried, we work on 5-6 VMs per core.

3. Storage = if each VDI image is 20GB, that's 20GB x 20GB = 400GB at least, needed for your VDI meachines, this can be reduced using different techniques, based on product chosen.

4. Fast Storage possibly SSDs, Fusion-IO.

So I think you will see the requirements above, are more than required for a Terminal Server, as you have anticpitated.
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