For those of you wondering what it means to use virtual machines, here is a practical example from Anandtech:
...this bench consists of 3 separate applications, all of which we are very familiar with due to extensive optimization and stress testing efforts. Although we believe the results published based on this bench speak for themselves, the problem remained that it was impossible for anyone outside our lab to verify the results, seeming as how two out of three of the applications used were owned by private companies and were entrusted to our lab under rather strict conditions (distributing them to the rest of the world sadly not being one of them).
Secondly, vApus M1 being a bench that focuses on fairly heavy VM's, we feel the need to create another point of reference. One that will back up the results of the original, but with a completely different mix of VM's.
Thus began the process of creating vApus For Open Source, or vApus FOS, as we like to call it in the lab.
The idea behind vApus FOS is that the VM's can be freely distributed to any vendors that wish to verify our results, and our lab can provide a version of the actual in-house developed vApus benching software to generate the load.
I am happy to say that the preliminary 1-tile testing for this new benchmark has just completed, and so far everything has been running quite smoothly. The results are reproducible, the VM's stable... looks like our 4-tile (16 VM's in total) testing can begin!
The fun part is that a lot of the ideas we incorporated into the new setup we owe to you, our readers! Thanks to the feedback we got on vApus M1, we were able to combine some new workloads into an interesting mix:
As it stands, one tile consists of 4 VM's, all of which run a basic, minimal CentOS 5.4....
Sometimes in my posts and tweets, I fear I assume everyone understands virtualization and the benefits behind it. As this post shows, virtualization can be a vital tool when running stress tests on commercial software - but what is also required is the ability to reproduce your results. Static images that can be turned on quickly as VMs are a perfect way to create identical environments - or a variety of environments on representing many configurations. These virtual machines greatly reduce costs, trouble shooting, and potential down time. Find out more about IBM virtualization
- that's what we're here for!