Fast & Easy Virtualization Solutions from Microsoft

Since joining ESG close to a year ago, I've stayed quiet on the blogging front. Let the more seasoned, industry experts (bigger geeks than I) do the blogging and I'll just ride their coattails. They have the experience, which means they have the answers to any and every question. With that said, I do have a lot of information to share, whether it’s about new IT products or recent test results from the latest ESG Lab publications. I'll be updating you about cool IT products and offerings from various vendors that ESG Lab (and me in particular) have gotten our hands on and played with.

Microsoft has been making some major strides in the virtualization world as of late. Yes, Hyper-V has been around for some time, but if you’ve been paying close attention you’ve noticed Microsoft’s latest virtualization push. ESG Lab recently evaluated three virtualization offerings that take advantage of Hyper-V’s scalable and flexible performance.

First, we looked at an integrated Quest/Microsoft VDI solution. We audited test results from Quest during their recent visit to Microsoft’s Redmond campus. We had a few different goals for the project, including evaluating ease of manageability and cost-effectiveness, but I can highlight all of the findings in three words: "Damn, that's fast." We scaled up to 3,000 virtual desktops in a little over 40 minutes. 3,000! The report provides additional details about other impressive scalability testing with a very small amount of RAM.

Next we looked at a new offering from HP and Microsoft, the HP Database Consolidation Appliance (DBCA) with SQL Server. I can again highlight the results in three words: "Damn, that's easy." Who wouldn't want a fully integrated solution that comes pre-configured and pre-optimized to meet your SQL Server needs? It was incredibly easy. Like plug it in, power it on, and away you go. We ran an OLTP workload and scaled up to 320 SQL Server VMs within a half-rack appliance. Check out the report for more information about the incredible scalability potential.

Finally, we tested the impact of virtualizing a Dynamics CRM deployment, consisting of three key server roles: SQL Server, web server (front-end), and async server (back-end). There is a common misconception that makes people second-guess virtualizing all three of these roles. In fact, many people take hybrid approaches, virtualizing the web and async servers, while leaving SQL Server on its own physical server. I'm here to tell you that it's not necessary! We were easily able to deploy up to 200,000 CRM users and run performance tests for 40,000 concurrent users. For more details about the great performance and zero Hyper-V overhead, check out the full report.

I’m working on a few other cool things that I’ll be sharing shortly so stay tuned and thanks for reading!

Topics: IT Infrastructure Cloud Services & Orchestration ESG Validation Services