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ESX on x4600

The x4600 is an 8 processor, 16 core AMD Opteron machine. If you’ve ever wondered what 70 vm’s on a single box would look like, wonder no more.


You’ll probably want to download it to get a closer look.

Vince Hill and I have been doing some lab work with the x4600 and ESX 3.01. One of the tests we have been running has ~50 Linux vm’s doing a kernel compile in a loop to stress CPU and ~10 Red Hat vm’s running the Medrec, a J2EE test application to stress some of the 32Gb of memory.

Not surprisingly, the box is pegged under this load, but what is surprising is how responsive it is despite the load. Medrec response is snappy and the compile times for the kernel compile tests degrade linearly and gracefully.

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This picture is of the Virtual Center console graphing CPU utilization. We’ve fenced off CPU 0 for the ESX console and CPU 15 few a few “utility” machines for things like a Linux virtual firewall/router, a Solaris 10 instance with some disk load generation tools (vdbench) and mediawiki site for our notes.

We have a number of customers preparing to kick the tires on this configuration with vmware. We think we’ll see a LOT of these x4600 servers installed where customers are looking to reduce space and power consumption in their data centers with an excellent data center solution.

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