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Moving VM's pagefile to spindle HDD

Posted on 2014-03-07
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Looking to convert low-use and non-critical servers, about 13 in all, from physical to a two-node clustered virtual host.  

Some servers are small SQL servers, writing about 2-4GB of data a day.  Some SQL servers are x86, so a 4GB limitation (due to running old software we intend to upgrade to 64-bit versions next year).  Other servers are 64-bit with 16GB RAM.

Since SSD's are starting to get into reasonable price range, I would like to put all 13 on to several SSD's.  I keep reading that it is highly recommended that the pagefiles for each server be put into separate vhd file and placed onto a separate spindle drive to save on wear to the SSDs.

This is a very small virtualization project for a small business.  Sadly, there is no existing large scale virtual datacenter we could just pull these into.

So my question is, would two 300GB 15K SAS drives in RAID 1 be more than enough (performance-wise) to handle the pagefile vhd's for all 13 servers?  Should I go with four in a RAID 10 instead?  Two sets of RAID 1?  Or am I going about this the wrong way?
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Question by:3Discovery
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by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 39913438
Putting 13 swap files on what is effectively one spindle (raid 1 with 2 disks essentially performs at the speed of only one disk) will almost certainly leave that disk set I/O constrained. You'd be better off more slower disks.
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Gerald Connolly earned 500 total points
ID: 39917158
on what is effectively one spindle (raid 1 with 2 disks essentially performs at the speed of only one disk
What? Physical Disk = spindle, so RAID-1 with 2xDisk/Spindle only has a 2x Write overhead (RAID-5 = 4x), but does have a 2x Read Speed if using a proper RAID controller or in software - Don't use the Fake-RAID controllers that are on most Mobo's today.

A 15K SAS disk probably does 2xIOPS of a 7200 disk so a 4 Spindle RAID10 should be fine.
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