How vStack has improved VM performance to almost the same level as physical servers


With Moore’s Law no longer in effect, companies can no longer provide CPU performance growth through hardware upgrades. Businesses began to look for other ways to improve hardware performance. Some virtualization solution vendors have offered an effective solution – CPU Overhead reduction. This makes efficient use of the capacity a company already has at its disposal. In vStack the CPU Overhead index is 2-5% as compared to standard 10-15%. In this article, we’ll discuss why the vStack platform provides low overhead and what benefits it brings.


Virtual server problems or what is CPU Overhead

Physical servers contain processors, memory, hard disks, networking components, and the OS to run programs and applications. Their resources cannot be shared between different companies, so one server can solve the problems of only one organization. This has its pros and cons. The minus is that only one type of operating system can run on a single physical server. To use the resources more efficiently, you can place virtual servers on it, each of them will run their own operating system and use their own dedicated resources. A virtual server is a software environment that emulates the functions of a physical server.


The advantage of a physical server is that, unlike a virtual solution, it works with its own dedicated resources and does not share CPU, storage and networking components with other servers. Whereas several virtual servers have to compete with each other for computing resources. Therefore, the performance of physical servers is always higher than that of virtual servers.


The decrease in performance of a virtual server compared to a physical server due to virtualization overhead is called CPU Overhead. To estimate it, compare the difference in the amount of work the CPU can do and the percentage of power used to perform individual tasks.


What are the benefits of reducing virtualization overhead

CPU Overhead indicates how much actual computing power exceeds the amount of power that the task requires. The lower the virtualization overhead, the higher the performance of the virtual server.


This allows the company to use the available hardware resources as efficiently as possible. This means that the number of servers and equipment is reduced, resulting in a significant reduction in the cost of computing resources.


That is, reducing CPU Overhead helps to increase performance and reduce costs at the same time.


vStack CPU overhead is at least half that of peers

The average CPU Overhead among hyperconverged and virtualization systems is 10-15%. This figure was sufficient as long as Moore’s Law was in effect. That is, as long as performance problems could be solved by buying new, more powerful hardware. Today, however, the growth of the possible performance of hardware solutions is practically stopped. Therefore, companies were faced with the question of how to achieve a reduction in CPU Overhead.


Experts have been predicting a slowdown in productivity growth for a long time. In 2015, Gordon Moore told The Sunday Times in an interview that the law named after him would lose relevance in about ten years. Therefore, the developers of the vStack platform thought about options to address the potential problem as early as 2019. As a result, a virtualization platform was created, which subsequently allowed to reduce overhead costs.


The creators of the vStack platform were able to provide CPU Overhead of the platform at a level of 2-5%. This ensures minimal performance degradation of the virtual server relative to the physical server and high computational efficiency.


How vStack provides CPU Overhead 2-5%

Let’s take a look at how vStack ensures low CPU Overhead in virtualization.


First of all, it is lightweight and compact hypervisor. When creating it, vStack specialists focused on the fact that it will be used in cloud services. Therefore, it was decided not to add functionality that will be used by only 3-5% of consumers. There is no redundancy in the platform’s code base, the developers do not use complex monstrous approaches to virtualization.


When developing hypervisor functionality, developers consider its impact on performance and CPU Overhead. If adding a feature degrades performance and increases virtualization overhead, it may be abandoned. For example, the company considered adding Memory Hot Plug technology, which allows memory to be added to a running virtual machine without stopping the guest operating system. Implementing this feature would have required modifications to the virtual memory operation, which would have degraded the performance of the platform. At the same time, the operation of information systems in a cloud environment has advantages that allow to level out the lack of this technology and solve the same problems in another way.


Reducing CPU Overhead allows you to make the most efficient use of the resources that are at your company’s disposal. At the same time, the cost of purchasing or leasing hardware is reduced, and performance increases. vStack provides low virtualization overhead by being lightweight and eliminating technologies that degrade platform performance. As a result, its CPU Overhead is as low as 2-5%, as opposed to the standard 10-15%.


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