There are differences between physical hardware and the virtual implementation of hardware that host your SharePoint farm. Many of these differences are subtle and not obvious. This topic will highlight some of the important differences and explain how that impacts your virtual machine design and how to optimize the performance of your virtualized SharePoint environment. It helps you understand in one blog post the real underlying issues affecting performance of your farm. Finally it finishes off by providing a plan for virtualizing your SharePoint farm.
This topic discusses:
- “Hosted” versus “bare metal” hypervisor and recommendation for your SharePoint farm
- What are the physical and virtual hardware boundaries for hosting your SharePoint farm?
- What are the layers of a virtual SharePoint farm?
- The difference between a physical and virtual resource
- Recommendations for your SharePoint environment from a physical and virtual perspective for CPU, Memory, Disk and Network.
- Plan for virtualized SharePoint farms
“Hosted” versus “bare metal” hypervisor
The first important performance choice to make when virtualizing your SharePoint farm is whether to use a “hosted” or “bare metal” hypervisor virtualization technology to host your SharePoint farm.
- “Bare Metal” hypervisors are software systems, such as Windows Server 2008 with Hyper-V and VMWARE ESX Server, that execute directly on the host’s hardware as a hardware control and guest operating system monitor. The guest operating system which hosts SharePoint software executes directly above the hypervisor.
- “Hosted” hypervisors are software applications running within a conventional operating system environment, typically as a service. Examples include Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 R2 and VMWare Server. The guest operating system which hosts SharePoint software is executes above the operating system which then executes on the hardware resulting in 3 layers between hardware and SharePoint.