Stairway to SQL Server Virtualization Level 1: What is Virtualization?

  • Comments posted to this topic are about the item Stairway to SQL Server Virtualization Level 1: What is Virtualization?

  • Can you explain how to reduce licensing costs for SQL server when virtualizing.

    I was told by our software licence supplier, that if we wanted to run SQL Server 2008R2 on our virtual server, a 10x4 Core Blade machine, that we would need 10 licences, as the software could run on any of the 10 processors, and each one needed its own licence. As we didn't want to run 10 virtual SQL Servers this made the cost prohibitive.

    Is there a particular license model that we can use that will reduce this down to just the number of processors that are used?

    I know that since SQL Server 2012 the licencing has been on a per core basis, this is the main reason why we have not upgraded, our costs go up 4 fold.

  • What is the basic rule of thumb on whether a group of servers are candidates for virtualization on a single server?

    If the sum of their individual server utilizations is under 50%? 60%? 70%?

  • In our environment there are 104 Databases which is moving on one VM, so how much CPU and RAM should be consider and also we are implementing the always on features, my question is does always on support 104 databases?

    what points we should consider?

  • > Quite the contrary, the overhead from multiple operating systems is negligible from a resource consumption standpoint

    Last time I checked, Windows Server 2012 r2 requires minimum 512MB of RAM to run . If you have 100 separate servers that is 50GB of RAM you could be using for in-memory loading of data or other resources you can use the RAM for. Having an OS layer has its advantages, but in a homogeneous (e.g. Windows Server only) environment, it seems inefficient.

  • Good questions about the licensing angle. I will look forward to the responses.

    I also want to say this post is clear and helpful. I wanted to mention something that has been an issue in the past for me. When someone says that a stand-alone physical processor's utilization rate is 25 percent, it really begs the question: is this 25 percent at peak periods or is the 25 percent averaged over a period of time? If averaged, the we have a problem. You can consolidate these physical servers as guests on a VM host. But when the peak period comes along, you might miss your SLAs by a large margin. That is, if all the guests have peak periods at the same time, you might be over committed to the point of having excessive processor pressure.

    We also forget that there is more to the story of consolidation than just the CPU utilization (peak or otherwise). There is memory and there is I/O. Database applications aren't always consistent in CPU, memory, and I/O. Some can be high I/O and low CPU, others can be high CPU and low I/O. So App_A might use half the CPU of App_B, but App_A might use twice the I/O of App_B. This might balance out until the VM guest for App_C comes in and is similar in design to App_A. While the CPU utilization is better than hoped for, we will find the applications running on the VM host are running too slow.

    For the DBA and VM admin involved, it behooves both of them to ensure there are good performance metrics gathered before committing to a particular VM architecture.

  • You might want to give some credit to IBM, who invented VM as a concept and an operating system (or hypervisor, if you like) more than 40 years ago.

    IBM announced its first official VM product (then called VM/370) on August 2, 1972, 42 years ago!


  • I have created a VM Win2008R2 Ent server, with esxi however it keeps on requiring the activation key. I have read I need to install VMWare tools so it won't keep asking for this? Or just give the VM internet access so it can be activate? How do you do this, shared internet host?

    Edit: Sorry realised this is in the wrong thread and should be in the Virtualization forum.


    [font="Tahoma"]Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes. – Carl Jung.[/font]
  • Well spoken. I realize I am dating myself when I say this, but I used VM in the early 1980's. The tragedy about VM was the upper echelons of IBM executive management wouldn't give much backing to it (in fact, they would have loved to have killed it on more than one occasion). They had, even up through the early 2000s, the ability to make this platform the desire of corporations everywhere. But it is not surprising because this same management blew golden opportunities with the PC, 8100, the early RS6000, AS400, their fault-tolerant s/88, and others. There was an InformationWeek article published on February 1, 1993 entitled "The Fall of IBM" by two MIT researchers Charles Ferguson and Charles Morris giving a very clear picture of what happens to a company when they enjoy too much success.

  • I am a novice using Hyper-V to create SQL Server BI environments; a VM for SSAS tabular, one for SharePoint BI etc. I was wondering if there was a way or method to have my host machine connect to one of my VM's via a virtual network, mainly for the purpose of pointing an Excel instance or PowerPivot within my host machine at a db in one of the VM's. I have done considerable searching on this topic but admittedly am not clear about it, networking is NOT a strong suit. I currently have an external switch /network adapter so that VM can use my host's internet connection, but I think if this is possible, its much more integrated of an config.

    My question... is this possible? If so can someone point me in the right direction?


    As soon as you see something, you already start to intellectualize it. As soon as you intellectualize something, it is no longer what you saw. Suzuki-roshi

  • I know this thread is a bit stale, but I just saw your post. True enough about crediting IBM with the first VM. I am dating myself, but I worked on that original platform. There were some things that IBM did rather well -- and VM was one of them. Unfortunately, the VM initiative wasn't started by IBM upper management and they treated it as blood sucking aberration to their business model. Numerous attempts to kill it failed because the customers intervened. Needless to say, the technical morons running IBM in that era nearly drove the company to insolvency in the early 1990s because they didn't know computers from horse turds. They were only focused on meeting short-term financial objectives from Wall Street. I wonder if history is going to repeat itself with Microsoft. Case in point: Windows 8.0 being thrown on their customers because they were minding Wall Street too much.

  • Is Part 2 of the same topic published?


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