Whitepaper: Exchange Server 2003 Performance on VMware
VMware has released a new whitepaper that discusses the performance and scalability of Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 when deployed within virtual machines running under VMware ESX Server 3.01: Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Performance on VMware ESX Server 3.
The paper presents the results of a joint study with Dell that examined the performance implications of a virtualized Exchange environment. Specifically, we looked at:
- The performance implications of running Exchange Server 2003 on a virtual machine versus a physical system.
- The performance of Exchange Server 2003 in virtual machine configurations when “scaling-up” (adding more processors to a machine) and “scaling-out” (adding more machines).
The details of the configurations and results of the above experiments are documented in the white paper.
To briefly summarize, the results from the study indicate that on an Dell PowerEdge 6850 server configured with four 2.66 GHz dual-core Intel Xeon 7020 processors and 16GB of RAM.
- A uniprocessor virtual machine can support up to 1,300 Heavy Exchange users.
- Consolidating multiple instances of these uniprocessor Exchange virtual machines can cumulatively support up to 4,000 Heavy users while still providing acceptable performance and scaling.
- Uniprocessor virtual machines are, from a performance perspective, equivalent to half as many multiprocessor (two virtual processors) virtual machines.
Also be sure that you know the Microsoft support policy regarding VMware: Support for Microsoft Software in VMware Virtual Machines.