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1millionIOPS On 1VM

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
Memory: 256GB
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.


15 thoughts on “1millionIOPS On 1VM

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  5. Joe Kimpler

    Joshua – Was there any other information added after VMWorld?


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  8. AJ

    Hi Joshua,

    Can you please explain how the 1 million IOPS test was done? I’ve seen the hardware specs mentioned in the blog but you guys don’t say anything about the “storage lay-out” being used during this test.

    So… each of the two Violin Arrays have X amounts of LUNS carved. LUNS per array are combined together with file-system-X, and X-amount of file systems are equally divided over the (probably) four para-virtual adapters used with the test VM.

    Any input will be highly appreciated!

    Cheers, AJ.

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