SQL server 2012 Standard in Vmware

Posted on 2014-08-20
Last Modified: 2014-08-24

SQL 2012 standard supports 16 cores.  I was wondering what would be the best configuration in vmware to setup if I wanted this.

Would I do 4 sockets + core 4 cores as the sql configuration for best performance?
Question by:ts11
    LVL 25

    Accepted Solution

    If you are not bound by licensing issues you can go the route you suggest (4 sockets + 4 core), if licensing is an issue, you're better off using less sockets and more cores ...  If you wanted this of course.

    Always start "small" and monitor performance, then add sockets/cores when needed.
    LVL 15

    Expert Comment

    by:Shaik M. Sajid
    Spravtek is right...
    LVL 116

    Assisted Solution

    by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
    Just assign sockets....

    vSMP (virtual SMP) can affect virtual machine performance, when adding too many vCPUs to virtual machines that cannot use the vCPUs effectly, e.g. Servers than can use vSMP correctly :- SQL Server, Exchange Server.

    This is true, many VMware Administrators, think adding lots of processors, will increase performance - wrong! (and because they can, they just go silly!). Sometimes there is confusion between cores and processors. But what we are adding is additional processors in the virtual machine.

    So 4 vCPU, to the VM is a 4 Way SMP (Quad Processor Server), if you have Enterprise Plus license you can add 8, (and only if you have the correct OS License will the OS recognise them all).

    If applications, can take advantage e.g. Exchange, SQL, adding additional processors, can/may increase performance.

    So usual rule of thumb is try 1 vCPU, then try 2 vCPU, knock back to 1 vCPU if performance is affected. and only use vSMP if the VM can take advantage.

    Example, VM with 4 vCPUs allocated!

    My simple laymans explaination of the "scheduler!"

    As you have assigned 4 vCPUs, to this VM, the VMware scheulder, has to wait until 4 cores are free and available, to do this, it has to pause the first cores, until the 4th is available, during this timeframe, the paused cores are not available for processes, this is my simplistic view, but bottom line is adding more vCPUs to a VM, may not give you the performance benefits you think, unless the VM, it's applications are optimised for additional vCPUs.

    See here

    see here

    also there is a document here about the CPU scheduler

    Author Comment


    Originally I had assigned just sockets, but this SQL version will only run on 4 sockets and I was running into performance issues.  I then assigned 2 sockets and 4 cores per sockets and was seeing a performance gain with that, but after 6 months on that configuration I'm seeing some performance issues at peak load times.

    I'll read these articles and experiment some as well.
    LVL 61

    Expert Comment

    More processors do not essentially mean it will perform better.
    1) many queries do not involve many tables , so they dont paralleleize at all
    2) even paralellized the slowest sub-query determines overall time spent
    More CPUs are needed if you really have lots of parallel queries that saturate say 2 vCPUs...
    With more expensive vmware editions you can hot-plug vCPUs on the fly, (Windows and SQL server supports it). At least enable the option in case you get better licence in future.

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