Date Added: May 2009
VMware vSphere 4 is the industry's first cloud operating system. IT organizations can make use of cloud computing with several new and unique features of the new VMware vSphere 4. There are several performance enhancements that empower administrators with better efficiency, control, and choice. This paper focuses on the performance enhancements of VMware vSphere 4 in the areas of scalability enhancements, performance and resource management, CPU, memory, storage, and networking. The new scalability enhancements enable the VMware vSphere 4 to carry almost double the load of virtual machine CPU count, virtual machine memory, host CPU core, host memory, and powered-on VMs per ESX/ESXi compared to VI3. The enhancements are made possible thanks to the new virtual hardware, VMDirectPath for virtual machines, and increased NFS datastore support. These CPU enhancements help improve the throughput of all workloads with an advanced scheduler. The hardware-assisted memory virtualization in vSphere yields optimal performance. Architectural improvements like VMware Paravirtualized SCSI (PVSCSI), iSCSI support improvements, software iSCSI and NFS support with jumbo frames, and improved I/O concurrency have positively impacted storage abilities. The significant changes in networking improvements include VMXNET Generation 3 NIC adapter and network stack performance and scalability. Resource management enhancements have positively impacted VMotion and VM provisioning; enhanced vCenter server scalability and vCenter performance charts enhancements have bettered performance management. The paper concludes with test results using Oracle, SQL Server, SAP and Exchange applications.