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From the Bloggers Bench: Do More with Less – High VM Density

Post by VMware Systems Engineer Kris Walsh

As a Systems Engineer working in the mid-market and small business space, I have the privilege of talking to people with 0 to 2000 virtual machines.  A very common theme I hear is “We have a new mission in IT.  ‘Do more with less.’”  Ever heard that one?  You might be hearing the knives sharpening, getting ready to take a slice from your budget.

What does “Do more with less” even mean?  It’s a vague and ambiguous paradox. The reality is YOU are expected to do more with less these days.  It’s a business trend.  That’s easy to do…  In opposite land, maybe…

I’d like to share a few “do more with less” tools I recommend to my customers.  The ultimate goal, and purpose of this blog is, High VM Density.


Have More IT Infrastructure Than Is Necessary?

Most customers I talk to have a very low VM density (1-10 VMs per Host).  This equates
to more IT infrastructure than is necessary.  More IT infrastructure is less efficient and messier for you!

High VM Density’s value centers on operational efficiency providing lower total cost of ownership (TCO) and the ability to “do more with less” – less servers, storage, networking, software licenses, etc.  High VM density has always been a strength of VMware vSphere.  Every year we enhance our hypervisor technology & incorporate new features, further improving the synergistic effect that boosts the highest VM density on the market… But that can only help so much.


Stop Overprovisioning Your VMs – Save Money

You need to stop overprovisioning your VMs!  It’s expensive.  We’re trying to save money, not waste resources.  All too often I hear, “But how do I know that ‘just right’ size?”  “I can’t compromise performance.” or “I get requests for a certain VM configuration and give it.”

If you’re going to survive in a world of “do more with less” you’ve got to optimize
everything.  We need just enough resources to cover what’s needed, but no more.  This is where VMware vCenter Operations Management Suite comes in.  It shows you how many VMs you can run in your environment and ensures you’re squeezing every last ounce of efficiency out of your precious vSphere resources.

With this, you can easily identify overprovisioned VMs…

And with integration with Chargeback Manager (part of the Advanced and Enterprise Suite) you can see how much that waste is costing you…  in the language management can understand… dollars and cents!


Start Simplifying Your IT.  No More Wasting Money!

I don’t want to get all Zen on you, but the quickest journey to an efficient IT infrastructure begins with a single step.  Download an evaluation of vCenter Operations Management Suite.  Once you do, you’ll see there are many, MANY more benefits to the VMware Operations Management Suite.  The installation takes less than an hour, but it will need to run for a few weeks before it can provide actionable information.

“Do more with less” isn’t as hard as it sounds.  You just need the right tools and solutions.  Here are some resources I share with my customers.  I’m sure you’ll find them very helpful!


Learn more:
VM Density
You can read more here: http://www.vmware.com/virtualization/advantages/total-cost/virtual-machine-density.html
Quantify the value here: http://www.vmware.com/technology/whyvmware/calculator/

VMware vCenter Operations Management Suite
White Paper: Quantifying the Incremental Value of vCenter Operations Management for vSphere Customers
Video Playlist – http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL5D4BB7D5E1F0D7F4

Step by Step Install: http://www.vmware.com/files/pdf/vcenter/vmware-vcenter-operations-manager-eval-guide.pdf
Deploying vCOPS 5 with vSphere Essentials, Essentials Plus, or Standard: http://kb.vmware.com/kb/2013695
Selecting a subset of the vCenter Server inventory to monitor in vCOPS: http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1036195


What methods and tools do you use to do more with less?

I look forward to your comments and ideas.

Kris Walsh


Get to know Kris – 10 Questions With…Kris Walsh

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