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MIS Systems Thread, Facility ePortal and VMware in Technical; Hi, For the past year and a bit we have been using Facility Admin and ePortal on a DL380 G4 ...
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    neilault's Avatar
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    Angry Facility ePortal and VMware

    Hi,

    For the past year and a bit we have been using Facility Admin and ePortal on a DL380 G4 server which seemed to run fine. Recently however it server dropped it's RAID array and we then decided to virtualise the server using VMware ESX.

    However since doing so we have noticed that the performance has dropped considerably (now using a DL380 G5 with 2 x Xeon 3.4Ghz processors, 6GB RAM, SCSI etc). We were considering purchasing a HP MSA SAN unit to hold the virtual files but if the performace carries on as currently using the SAN it woul dbe worthless. A facility backup takes over 2 hours to restore! Yet if I restore the same data on a test laptop it took 20mins!

    I have tried to remove the possibility of hardware by putting in on a different DL380 server (all be it with only 2GB of RAM) that is running the free version of VMware Server 1.04 but this again still takes hours to restore.

    Has anyone on here successfully virtualised Facility and if so do you experience any real performance issues? Or can someone point me in the right direction to look.

    Many thanks,




    Neil

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    neilault's Avatar
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    Thumbs down

    I take it no-one has tried as yet to virtualise Facility?

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    Sorry Neil,

    I've not tried to virtualise Facility, I dont think virtualisation of this type of system would be worthwhile unless a fibre SAN was involved. The issue you have is that the Virtualised system doesnt actually write anything itself, it just thinks it does. The host system physically writes it to the drive. Major overheads. Are the drives in your server SAS or SATA? If you are going to stick with the virtualised way of doing things your only way is SAN - if you are using the HP MSA range make sure you use SAS drives too - more expensive but as CMIS is constantly reading and writing from the SQL Database it is needed.

    Lee

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    We're virtualising it in a few weeks - I'll let you know how it goes!

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    I think virtualisation is over hyped unless you spend a serious amount of money on I/O ie SAN. Which does not ofset hardware saving costs, of virtualisation. Although I can see D/R scenarious for Virtualisation.

    Having used Facility and Eportal a lot. I would hope that you are not hosting IIS(eportal) and SQL services on the same machine? To me this is something to be avoided no matter what sort of hardware you are using.

    My rule of thumb and feel free to ignore is that good quality Raid contollers and fasts discs make SQL faster and having 4GB of ram does not slow it down either This will help move the bottleneck towards the processors, rather than IO.

    Tim

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    Quote Originally Posted by monkeyx View Post
    Having used Facility and Eportal a lot. I would hope that you are not hosting IIS(eportal) and SQL services on the same machine? To me this is something to be avoided no matter what sort of hardware you are using.
    We moved away from split server installs as we were getting more problems although CMIS was on a DC running lots of other things and eportal was on a windows 2000 server with 750MB RAM and 900MHz processor.

    Putting both on to a HP DL380 G5 server with 2x 3GHz Intel Dual core XEONs and 4GB RAM has worked a treat. Not had any issues so far (almost 12 months). I know there were some issues with memory leaks but i've not noticed any issues.

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    monkeyx's Avatar
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    We moved away from split server installs as we were getting more problems although CMIS was on a DC running lots of other things and eportal was on a windows 2000 server with 750MB RAM and 900MHz processor.

    Putting both on to a HP DL380 G5 server with 2x 3GHz Intel Dual core XEONs and 4GB RAM has worked a treat. Not had any issues so far (almost 12 months). I know there were some issues with memory leaks but i've not noticed any issues.
    I was not really speak about Eportal/Facility as such. But mixing application servers with SQL/DB servers. I would not put apache on the same server as MySQL either. We have around 10 other applications running DBs from our SQL server and I want out SQL server to be responsive to all applications that use it.

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    Oh and by the way, happy birthday Neil. :-)

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    How have you assigned processors to it? Does it have more than one for the VM? Also if you have for example a dual core, or single HT processor *do not* assign both to the VM as you get scheduling conflicts between the vm and host. You would need a quad, or dual HT procs to assign 2 cpus to it.

    What does esxtop show when restoring? You aren't restoring with ghost btw? as I know thats slow under VMs.

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    I'm assuming he's doing a restore of the CMIS data, not the entire OS. It would be mainly I/O operations on the SQL DB.

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    Virtualised eportal

    I have just Virtualized E-Portal today. since it used to run on our DB server and i was getting fed up of telling people to log out every time i did a eportal upgrade as I would invariably reboot the box about ten times before eportal would work. So today when eportal had broken with lots of java errors I rebuilt it on my Hyper-V server. I'll let you know how I get on.
    I assigned it 2GB and just one CPU of 8 (2xQuadCore (Core based) CPUs)
    it seems responsive enough and logs in quickly

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    Hello,

    I have a Virtual Server for ePortal, and a Virtual Server for the CMIS Client Stuff and that works very well. ePortal has remained a lot stabler and in case of any issues I can just reboot that and no issues. Seems faster than when it was on a physical host. Our SQL DB Server is still physical though, and which I won't virtualise for a long time yet.

    Thanks,

    Rob

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