Archives for January 2013


EUC Tip 84: Supercharge Windows 7 VMware View Desktops to 4 vCPU’s

I was searching the internal Nutanix Engineering website and came across idea for blog post. I have never had the need for 4 vCPU VM but I’ve seen it lots before it other peoples environments. Know it makes wonder how many people have it set up wrong 🙂

There really much point in writing the post because I see a co-worker wrote about it two years ago!

Supercharge Windows 7 VMware View Desktops to 4 vCPU’s & other notes about Core/CPU Abstraction


Low Impact for Native & 3rd Party Replication on Nutanix

If you are going to store replicated data using the Native Nutanix replication or use a 3rd party replication software like Zerto, Veeam or vRanger you can exclude the PCIe-SSD tier to minimize impact to other applications running on the cluster.
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One Million VM’s on One Volume

I think a good design should be reflective of what business goals you are trying to achieve. A lot of times in the technology field designs decisions are made to take into account limitations of certain technologies first and then the business goals. One such design decision is how many VM’s you’re going to fit onto on a LUN or volume.

If your a fiber channel or iSCSI shop you’re going to be using VMFS for your file system of choice when running vSphere. The max number of VM’s is around the 128 mark with a bit higher or a bit less if your vendor of choice supports the atomic test and set (ATS) algorithm to lock the LUN or not. In VDI and Cloud environments the number of VM’s can go far north of 128 for the whole environment.


The issue than becomes managing all of the LUNS for your environment and operations best practices needed for when the storage subsystem needs to grow. If we settle on 128 being the Max number we aren’t going to design for that number, you’re probably going to shoot for 80 so you have some room for growth. Below is representation of how my LUNS you will need to host 1,000 VMS. Looks fun right? Add another 1,000 VM’s and your problem multiplies. Zoneing, Masking, CHAP, Radius, rescanning are some the fun tasks you will have before you.

Traditional NFS is a bit better. 256 VM’s seems like the magic number before performance problems hit with traditional storage controller architecture. Even the 256 limit gets into lots of volumes to maintain and monitor so you don’t cross the threshold.


The Nutanix Distributed File System has no such limits. Distributed storage controllers and all the writes happening locally to the VM prevent the number of VM’s from causing a performance bottleneck if you have the available IO for VM. Since Nutanix nodes scale compute and IO in a linear fashion, capacity planning is greatly reduced.


Building a system is out is usually the easy part too, maintaining a system is the hard part. What happens when someone new or a project gets passed to the operate team and they haven’t been briefed on all the nuisances. More VM’s get deployed and the performance goes belly up. I have seen this happen more than once, unfortunately in my life I have also have been the cause. With the add node feature of Nutanix, two clicks and more storage is added to the existing volumes. There is no need to change your design or add new volumes because of imposed limitations.

As IT shops will all are competing with the Amazon’s of the world. What can you get your admin to VM’s ratio to? Amazon is around the 1 to 10,000 mark. Another certainty for most shops is that you aren’t going to able to get more staff. Budgets and lack of available resources are usually the underlying issue for this.

How may LUNS\Volume do you want to maintain?


EUC Podcasts to Go!

Traveling in Canada requires driving and a lot of it. The good part of travel is it allows to load up some podcasts and get some learning in while putting some time behind the wheel.

On my trip down to San Jose I got the chance to listen to two EUC podcasts.

Episode 81 End-user computing for the virtual era
Rick Vanover hosts Simon Bramfitt. Simon blogs at also is a partner at Entelechy Associates. Simon is based in Northern California, but is originally from the United Kingdom. Rick and Simon talk at length about technologies for computing experiences and how virtualization has impacted these practices over time.

Go Get It

AdaptingIT – With ​Glenda Canfield
Glenda Canfield is an expert on virtualization in the enterprise and has more than 13 years of experience designing and supporting on-demand data centers. They talk about BYOD, VDI, and application delivery in this episode.

Go Get It


Project Virtual Reality Check (VRC) has the State of Union for Anti-virus on VDI

Project Virtual Reality Check (VRC) has released their white paper for anti-virus running on VDI. There is some really surprising results regarding the new offload architectures offered by vendors like McAfee and Trend.

VRC makes sure they point out they do not evaluate the quality of the AV solutions, the results are strictly performance and user density. Being able to see the BriForum Session during the sumer time I am glad the results are now open to everyone.

Go give it a read.

Download the VRC white paper on Anti-Virus


DR in Box with Zerto


When Nutanix launched the NX-3000 Series Hardware and NOS 3.0, replication was a major feature. I wrote about some of the capabilities in this article. The article also mentions some third party vendors that you can use to replicate your data from one site to another. When talking with customers I have been recommending Zerto as a great option to move data between different storage vendors. While our replication is great we do require both ends of the link to have Nutanix nodes running.

I believe Zerto to be the most similar to what Nutanix has to offer with our Native replication. Nutanix and Zerto are similar in the following ways:
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How to Virtualize Hadoop the Nutanix Way

Prior to working at Nutanix I wrote an article just before VMworld 2012 VMware and Nutanix Give Wings to Hadoop. Now with my feet grounded in the company I think I deliver to you some technical content on how to put some wind beneath your wings on virtualizing Hadoop.

One of the bottleneck necks with virtualizing Hadoop is it’s distributed nature. Traditional SANs usually don’t scale as servers are added, usually two storage controllers are to be shared by all the servers. This model is not conducive for a Terasort benchmark. Nutanix virtualizes the storage controller so as you add servers the controllers don’t become the bottleneck.

[Read more…]


If you could start from scratch and redesign IT, Would you do the same thing? HELL NO

Stephen Foskett, Organizer of Tech Field Day’s, with John Furrier and Dave Vellante talk about the new Data Center. Thought provoking and you might have guessed it but Nutanix gets plugged.


View Persona Gotcha’s

Just a few View Persona Gotcha’s for when designing your solutions.

  1. View Persona requires a SMB share.
  2. You cannot use View Persona with desktops that run in local mode.
  3. A user cannot access the same profile if the user switches between desktops that have XP user profiles and Win 7+ user profiles. Redirected folders can be shared between XP and Win 7+ profiles.
  4. Only one desktop can use the profile at once.
  5. View Persona needs View Premier license
  6. XP desktops must have UPHClean installed