SAP

SAP HANA Scale-Out support for VMware vSphere 7.0 U3 8-Socket wide VMs with up to 48 TB total Memory

Our last public Scale-Out benchmark was done some years ago with vSphere 6.7 using Broadwell CPUs on 8-socket hosts and 4-socket wide VMs.

We have been limited by the vSphere 6.7 configuration maxima’s (128 vCPUs) and the SAP HANA Appliance memory size for Broadwell OLTP workloads, which was 2 TB for a 4-socket SAP HANA instance. This configuration maxima limited the SAP HANA Scale-Out deployments to 2 TB large VMs and in a later vSphere 7 validation to 3 TB large VMs. Only a maximal total memory size of 32 TB was achievable with this limits.

With the support of 8-socket wide VMs and the increased SAP HANA memory support for the newer CPU generations, we are happy to announce that Scale-Out deployments with 8-socket wide VMs with up to 6 TB per VM are supported now on Cascade Lake and Cooper Lake based 8-socked systems.

This now allows to Scale-Out SAP HANA OLTP based workloads deployments with up to 48 TB with 8 x 8-socket, 6 TB VMs / hosts and BWH CPU sizing class M.

Also supported are 4-socket wide VMs on 4-socket hardware. For details check out

SAP note 2937606 – “SAP HANA on VMware vSphere 7.0 in production” and SAP note 2718982 – “SAP HANA on VMware vSphere and vSAN”.

The virtualization overhead during the validation was very little and below 5% in all BWH benchmark phases. See the excellent BWH benchmark certs. 2022025 and 2022026, which got executed jointly with our partner Lenovo on their ThinkAgile VX 4U, 8 processors / 192 cores / 384 threads, Intel Xeon Platinum 8260L 6 TB host systems:

Scale-Out deployment with 4 x 8-socket, 6 TB CLX 8260L CPU hosts.

This new, up to 48 TB memory support, is an increase of 50% to the previous maximal 32 TB supported memory size for virtual vSphere Scale-Out deployments. It additionally allows a reduction in the number of hosts from 16 x 4-socket, 2 TB hosts / VMs to 6 x 8-socket, 6 TB hosts/VMs in the case of a 32 TB memory requirement. This is a reduction of 62.5% on required host hardware compared to the old supported 32 TB configuration. Due to the higher processing power of the new CPUs, only 48 CPU socket licenses are now needed, instead of the 64 CPU sockets before, which equals a 25% reduction (6 x 8-socket hosts = 48 CPUs).

This provides significant TCO reduction by less operation, support, license, and hardware costs.

Beside the TCO reduction based on the new supported VM sizes, a VMware vSphere deployed SAP HANA Scale-Out system does not require a Scale-Out standby node or a specific storage integration to ensure data consistency and fail-over capabilities.

vSphere provide per default a cluster wide file system and ensures that only one SAP HANA worker VM can access the related data. VMware HA replaces the standby node functionality and the in BM deployments required Linux cluster solution and scripting. This provides a significant easier operation, standardizes the HA solution, and allows easy HW upgrades due to the vSphere HW abstraction in the case the used HW needs to get renewed.

Following graphic shows, a Scale-Out cluster based on 8-socket hosts with a shared storage solution. Any SAP HANA supported shared storage solution can get used, regardless if the storage vendor provides a Scale-Out integration or not. In the vSphere case, the storage gets connected as VMFS data stores. No special consideration is needed, beside that it needs to be SAP HANA TDI supported storage with the required performance and capacity. Also supported are VM in-guest mounted NFS storage. In this case, please follow the storage vendor Scale-Out vSphere installation best practices.

As a summary, following SAP HANA Scale-Out Configurations are by now supported as of November 2022, for details check out the above referenced SAP notes.

CPU architecture (on minimum 4 socket hosts):

  • Intel Skylake processors of TDIv5 Model 4 & 8 socket
  • Intel Cascade Lake processors of TDIv5 Model 4 & 8 socket
  • Intel Cooper Lake processors of TDIv5 Model 4 & 8 socket

VM size – full socket  

  • ESXi Host / Node size 2 TB
    • 4 socket VM on up to 8 socket hosts (fully and partly UPI meshed)
    • Up to 1 master plus 15 worker nodes are possible. HA nodes should be added according to the cluster-size*.
    • Up to 2 TB of RAM per Scale-Out node (VM).
    • Sizing up to class L workloads
  • ESXi Host / Node size 3 TB
    • 4 socket VM on up to 8 socket hosts (fully and partly UPI meshed)
    • Up to 1 master plus 7 worker nodes are possible. HA nodes should be added according to the cluster-size*.
    • Up to 3 TB of RAM per Scale-Out node (VM).
    • Sizing up to class M workloads**
  • ESXi Host / Node size 6 TB (Cascade Lake and Cooper Lake)
    • 8 socket VM on 8 socket hosts (fully and partly UPI meshed)
    • Up to 1 master plus 7 worker nodes are possible. HA nodes should be added according to the cluster-size*.
    • Up to 6 TB of RAM per Scale-Out node (VM).
    • Sizing up to class M workloads**

*FAQ: SAP HANA High Availability [2]

** VM size 3 TB and 6 TB on 4 and 8-socket hosts, are currently limited to SAP Sizing Class M workloads. This limitation is not a technical limitation, but caused, by the at the time of the validation, used lower bin CPU (Intel Xeon Platinum 8260L instead of a 8280).

With this new support customers can upgrade their existing SAP HANA Scale-Out deployments to vSphere 7 and 8-socket wide VMs on 8-socket CLX or CPL based hosts.