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1 powerfull or 2 less power machines for labs

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  • 1 powerfull or 2 less power machines for labs

    Hi all,

    Been reading what feels like the whole internet for the past 3 days trying to get a good feel.

    I need to learn a new product for my job and it involves an application running on Oracle and/or MSSQL.

    I have a quad core intel [email protected] with 8GB RAM. The HDD is a SATA 1.5 TB no raid or anything.

    I have ESXi running on it with one Windows 2008R2 vm with this app and MSSQL2008 but the performance isnt great. The memory is near paging and the HDD light is nearly always on.

    So I need to spend. Now I probably have approx 1000. Should I build one large box with dual XEON processors with 16GB RAM and try and find a good HDD card with Raid 10 or shall I build 2 simlilar specs as what I have and split the app and db out.

    thanks for your time guys
    Kind regards

  • #2
    Re: 1 powerfull or 2 less power machines for labs

    I don' think you need to spend any more money on it, unless of course is not your money and you can benefit from boosting up the Lab
    I've worked with servers with half the specs hosting a .net application with hundreds of transactions and the performance was great.
    You need to focus instead on the performance issues with your app.
    How do you know there are performance issues?
    Have you checked the counters? Note that mssql handles memory differently and uses quite a big chunck of it and releases when needed.
    What disk counters are you looking at?
    Caesar's cipher - 3




    • #3
      Re: 1 powerfull or 2 less power machines for labs

      I agree with L4ndy, I've had a optiplex 760 with 4g of ram and a dual core processor run sql servers and deployment servers fine.
      "To err is human but to really **** things up requires a computer user..."

      "The path to enlightenment is /user/bin/enlightenment"

      A+ CE


      • #4
        Re: 1 powerfull or 2 less power machines for labs

        you may find the app and database are not on the same subnets, so having a pair of server may help you show this in your setup.


        • #5
          Re: 1 powerfull or 2 less power machines for labs

          Keep in mind that each VM has its own network settings. To join different VMs to different "real" networks, all you would need to do would be to add an extra NIC to the host.
          Gareth Howells

          BSc (Hons), MBCS, MCP, MCDST, ICCE

          Any advice is given in good faith and without warranty.

          Please give reputation points if somebody has helped you.

          "For by now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the Earth." (Exodus 9:15) - I could kill you with my thumb.

          "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you." (Genesis 9:3) - For every animal you don't eat, I'm going to eat three.


          • #6
            Re: 1 powerfull or 2 less power machines for labs

            A few thoughts:

            1) Get a basic Raid controller and put a few drives in raid 10 or raid 5 to increase your IOPs
            2) How is your VM setup? How many processors are being used / RAM?
            3) How do you connect to the machine? I found if I RDP into my machines the performance is MUCH better than running from the web console (I use vsphere)

            Keep in mind VMWare defaults to use the CPUs as single core (IE: if you say use 4 vCPUs you get 2.4Ghz(1 core)x2.4Ghz(1 core)x2.4Ghz(1 core)x2.4Ghz(1 core) and SQL Server (depending on version) may only be using the 1st vCPU. So in this demonstration you may be getting only one 2.4Ghz chip even if the VM is using 4 vCPUs.

            You can fix this by modifying the config file (Link). You can setup your server to use 4 CPUs as a single 4 Core single procesor instead of 4 single core processors.

            To see how the different verisions of SQL Server use the processor go to (Link). It also has commands to verify what CPUs are working with the SQL program.