A contributed article from SolarWinds' Mike Thompson.
view has been a major topic at VMWorld 2012 and one of the key issue
issues that even VMware is acknowledging is that the infrastructure
costs are still a barrier for broader adoption of virtual desktop
infrastructure (VDI). In particular the unpredictability of the storage
IOps and the differences between peak activities and steady state makes
sizing and purchasing storage for VDI very difficult. Essentially,
sizing for peak storage loads resulting from boot storms or upgrade,
antivirus or other change operations can make the storage bill too
expensive to make VDI practical for many companies. On the other hand,
undersizing the storage capacity can quickly result in a poor user
experience and rapid dissatisfaction, especially in the adoption
phase. Caught between these two problems VMware has put some
additional focus on bringing down the infrastructure cost barrier with
two features - View Storage Accelerator and View Composer Array
Integration (VCAI). These enhancements will reduce some of the key
problems customers see with doing VMware performance monitoring for their VDI environment
storage accelerator is a capability that is focused on acceleration of
the read process for VDI. Essentially they put in-memory cache of
between 400 MB and 2 GB of RAM in a host based solution in front of the
disk-based storage. The cache will hold the primary storage bits that
the virtual desktops are accessing from a read point of view and takes
that load off of the disks in the infrastructure. Depending on what
operations or scenarios were looked at the capability showed SAN performance management
improvements for peak read IOPs by up to 80% and average IOPs by 45%.
Different scenarios resulted in smaller reductions but were still
substantial. That change can really make a substantial reduction in the
required storage capacity and capital cost.
second capability they have added is called View Composer Array
Integration (VCAI). Essentially this is a different strategy that
offloads much of the workload from the virtual system to the storage
array where the cloning and snapshot technology can be very efficient.
View can then access those newly created images to rapidly deliver
services to the end users. VCAI is part of View Composer and integrates
with NAS storage partners using the vStorage APIs for Array Integration
(VAAI). EMC and NetApp are the only partners that currently provide
this capability but they expect more to participate in the future.
these enhancements VMware is addressing probably the biggest
infrastructure hurdle people encounter when they move to VDI but they
recognize that other challenges remain. When you reduce the storage IOPs
as your primary bottleneck in these operations, that often exposes the
next bottleneck, often CPU. Additionally, while read IOPs storms are
probably the most common, this won't help with operations that are write
intensive. While there are more things needed to reduce the
infrastructure costs, these enhancements should help VDI infrastructure
budget requests make it past the laugh test.
Read and comment on the original article at Geek Speak.