Despite the increasing horsepower of modern multi-core processors and the promise of virtualization, we’re seeing relatively little progress in the amount of concurrent work they accomplish. That’s why we are having to buy a lot more virtualized servers than we expected.
On closer examination, we find the root cause to be IO-starved virtual machines (VMs), especially for heavy online transactional processing (OLTP) apps, databases and mainstream IO-intensive workloads. Plenty of compute power is at their disposal, but servers have a tough time fielding inputs and outputs. This gives rise to an odd phenomenon of stalled virtualized apps while many processor cores remain idle.
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