Last year at VMworld 2011 we presented one million I/O operations per second (IOPS) on a single vSphere 5 host (link). The intent was to demonstrate vSphere 5's performance by using mutilple VMs to drive an aggregate load of one million IOPS through a single server. There has recently been some interest in driving similar I/O load through a single VM. We used a pair of Violin Memory 6616 flash memory arrays, which we connected to a two-socket HP DL380 server, for some quick experiments prior to VMworld. vSphere 5.1 was able to demonstrate high performance and I/O efficiency by exceeding one million IOPS, doing so with only a modest eight-way VM. A brief description of our configuration and results is given below.
Hypervisor: vSphere 5.1
Server: HP DL380 Gen8
CPU: 2 x Intel Xeon E5-2690, HyperThreading disabled
HBAs: 5 x QLE2562
Storage: 2 x Violin Memory 6616 Flash Memory Arrays
VM: Windows Server 2008 R2, 8 vCPUs and 48GB.
Iometer Config: 4K IO size w/ 16 workers
Using the above configuration we achieved 1055896 total sustained IOPS. Check out the following short video clip from one of our latest runs.
Look out for a more thorough write-up after VMworld.