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The PowerVM Story Gets Better

PowerVM has many advantages compared to competing virtualization technologies, including the capabilities it borrows from the mainframe.

Why do I consider PowerVM to be such a powerful virtualization technology? It has many advantages compared to competing virtualization technologies, including the capabilities it borrows from the mainframe.

This IBM site has a detailed list of advantages, but I'll highlight some particularly significant ones:
  • PowerVM hypervisor—Supports multiple operating environments on a single system.
  • Micro-partitioning—Enables up to 20 VMs per processor core.
  • Dynamic logical partitioning—Processor, memory, and I/O resources can be dynamically moved between VMs.
  • Shared processor pools—Processor resources for a group of VMs can be capped, reducing software license costs, VMs can use shared (capped or uncapped) processor resources. Processor resources can automatically move between VMs based on workload demands.
Consider how many LPARs you can consolidate and run on a single physical frame without the performance penalties and overhead you encounter when compared to competing hypervisors that run on x86 systems. PowerVM is recognized for how well it scales and performs.

I've discussed SAP HANA on POWER before, but the story gets better as SAP recently announced that its HANA workloads can run up to eight production databases on a single server running PowerVM.

Compare that with these notes on what you can do with VMware:

"Just like with the vSphere 5.5 SAP HANA support release in the beginning 2014, vSphere 6 supports currently only one production level VM that may get co-deployed with non-production level SAP HANA VMs. No resource sharing with other VMs is supported for production level SAP HANA VMs."

Here's a summary from the IBM Systems blog:

"Often, SAP workloads are among the most important workloads running in enterprises today. They deliver the most benefits from high levels of flexibility, resiliency and performance — of which virtualization is key. As the first platform to support up to eight virtualized production instances of SAP HANA, IBM Power Systems enables clients to run multiple HANA instances on the same system without the restrictions of VMware... .

With features like capacity on demand, virtual machines (LPARs) and hypervisor scheduling, PowerVM virtualization makes it simple to consolidate, integrate and manage multiple SAP systems, so you can reduce your data center footprint and accelerate speed to production through fewer servers. These features also give the ability to manage capacity and shift running applications to take advantage of additional available resources. This helps clients to conduct real-time transactions and make insights available for more rapid decisions... .

SAP HANA on Power Systems offers a smarter, more scalable in-memory database. It depends heavily on large memory configurations and low virtualization overhead to deliver rapid, actionable insights. And because Power Systems with PowerVM supports up to two times more virtualized HANA production databases than competitors’ x86 platforms, clients can run more HANA instances on one server, simplify deployment to production and manage their systems more easily."


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