Matthew D. Sarrel, Sarrel Group
I’ve been happily using my servers in Terremark’s vCloud Express environment and thought it might be time to make sure I’m using them efficiently. One of the benefits of running VM’s out in the cloud is that this is utility computing. I should be able to add and remove resources as needed and only have to pay for what I need. And it should all be easy.
There’s some general information about performance optimization in the Terremark wiki. This is fundamental processing optimization. Measuring load over time and aligning resources with load so as to use adequate but minimal resources.
Interestingly, Terremark recommends starting with a single VPU. Simply adding more VPU’s doesn’t necessarily provide better performance. The guidelines are to create a VM with a single VPU and measure the load. When applications are CPU (or VPU) constrained, add another VPU.
I can do this easily by first shutting down my virtual server.
And by clicking on the server I just shut down and selecting “configure” I see the hardware that the VM is already configured to use.
In this case I’ll simply scroll up to choose fewer VPU’s.
I like how the cost summary is provided so I can see the impact of my changes before I make them.
I’ll be saving 5 cents an hour, which is nice.
After I agree to the Service Agreement I click save and the configuration starts. After about 30 seconds I can select my VM and boot it. And then I connect to the server via RDP and run the Resource Monitor.
As you can see, after boot up CPU utilization drops to a pretty steady 25%. For now, it looks like I made the right choice about reducing the number of VPU’s.
This was a very quick and simplistic example. I should really monitor the load over more than a few minutes, but you get the point.
Matthew D. Sarrel (or Matt Sarrel) is executive director of Sarrel Group, a technology product testing, editorial services, and technical marketing consulting company. He also holds editorial positions at pcmag.com, eweek, GigaOM, and Allbusiness.com, and blogs at TopTechDog.