VMmark 2.0, VMware’s next-generation multi-host virtualization benchmark, is now generally available here.
We were motivated to create VMmark 2.0 by the revolutionary advancements in virtualization since VMmark 1.0 was conceived. The rapid pace of innovation in both the hypervisor and the hardware has quickly transformed datacenters by enabling easier virtualization of heavy and bursty workloads coupled with dynamic VM relocation (vMotion), dynamic datastore relocation (storage vMotion), and automation of many provisioning and administrative tasks across large-scale multi-host environments. In this paradigm, a large fraction of the stresses on the CPU, network, disk, and memory subsystems is generated by the underlying infrastructure operations. Load balancing across multiple hosts can also greatly effect application performance. The benchmarking methodology of VMmark 2.0 continues to focus on user-centric application performance while accounting for the effects of infrastructure activity on overall platform performance. This approach provides a much more accurate picture of platform capabilities than less comprehensive benchmarks.
I would like to thank all of our partners who participated in the VMmark 2.0 beta program. Their thorough testing and insightful feed back helped speed the development process while delivering a more robust benchmark. I anticipate a steady flow of benchmark results from partners over the coming months and years.
I should also acknowledge the hard work of my colleagues in the VMmark team that completed VMmark 2.0 on a relatively short timeline. We have performed a wide array of experiments during the development of VMmark 2.0 and will use the data as the basis for a series of upcoming posts in this forum. Some topics likely to be covered are cluster-wide scalability, performance of heterogeneous clusters, and networking tradeoffs between 1Gbit and 10Gbit for vMotion. I hope we can inspire others to use VMmark 2.0 to explore performance characteristics in multi-host environments in novel and interesting ways all the way up to cloud-scale.