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It’s that time of year. We are fast approaching the holiday season, where many companies will experience a surge in system usage. You’ve heard about it in the news in prior years: a major company experienced a performance issue where an application was not able to handle the unexpected surge in site traffic. Now is the time to plan for the unexpected and avoid downtime and performance issues during this year’s peak holiday season. There are a number of key features that vCloud Air provides to optimize performance of your mission-critical applications in the cloud. This is the first in a series of blogs designed to prepare you for success this holiday season. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be diving deeper into a few of the following features:

High availability. VMware utilizes the high availability feature of vSphere to protect virtual machines running in vCloud Air and minimize downtime. vSphere HA is designed to wait 10 seconds for a host to respond to a heartbeat before initiating a workflow to determine whether the host is partitioned, isolated, or dead. If the host is dead, the virtual machines on that host are automatically restarted on another host.

Performance.  To test performance, VMware commissioned Principled Technologies to perform CPU benchmark testing on the latest generation of compute services from VMware, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and Microsoft Azure, that demonstrate vCloud Air customers get 20-40% greater compute performance from their applications running on vCloud Air than when those applications are running on comparably sized instances on Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services.

Load balance environments. vCloud Air offers local front-end and back-end load balancing as part of the built-in networking services. There are four different load balancing methods available and the service can be used to balance HTTP, HTTPS, and TCP traffic.

Storage. With the purchase of vCloud Air core compute services, you can choose from two different persistent block storage types: Standard Storage and SSD-Accelerated Storage. SSD-Accelerated storage is our highest performing SSD cached storage option and is recommended for workloads that require the highest IOPS performance. SSD-Accelerated storage is highly recommended for tier one, two, and three workloads, including high-performance database applications where fast update times are critical.

Capacity. VMware vCloud Air users can create virtual machines in any configuration needed and can “hot” add compute resources to those configurations without having to shut off the virtual machine (assuming the guest OS supports hot-adding resources).

Prioritize restart. Within a vApp, you can create multiple virtual machines and configure the order in which virtual machines are started and stopped. This includes the ability to insert “Start Wait” times (in seconds) between virtual machines. If there is a host failure, vCloud Air will then bring up the virtual machines in this pre-defined order, enabling restart prioritization.

Recover from disruptions. To further protect your mission-critical applications against downtime or disrutpions, vCloud Air Disaster Recovery offers VMware vSphere® customers an affordable solution to protect their onsite business and mission-critical workloads and recover them in the cloud in the event of a disaster or disruptive event.

Wherever you’re at with your vCloud Air deployment, learn more about optimizing the service. Watch a vCloud vTech Talk demo tutorial or visit vcloud.vmware.com.

Be sure to check out the vCloud Air Community, where you can join or start a discussion, enter for a chance to win swag in our monthly giveaways and more. Get started here!

For future updates, follow us on Twitter and Facebook at @vCloud and Facebook.com/VMwarevCloud.

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