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How do your virtual machines compare with your peers'? Find out

A small virtual appliance company in Portsmouth, N.H. called vKernel first grabbed my attention last year with its virtualization management software, and they have it again with a new online virtualization community called Compare My VM.Compare MY VM logo

The site gives users a way to annonymously compare their virtual machine (VM) configurations, by application category, with peers to see how others are allocating resources, and hopefully, take something useful back to your own environment.

vKernel’s Founder and CEO, Alex Bakman, came up with the CompareMyVM idea to help the IT community learn from each other about allocating resources for specific application VMs. 

“How to properly allocate resources in a virtual environment is still a trial and error process.  Simply using the same allocations of a physical server when virtualizing it can quickly lead to resource capacity issues caused by either over or under allocations,” said vKernel’s communications director, Christian Simko. “Ultimately, users can come to the site to learn how to ‘right size’ VMs so that they can drive higher VM densities without impacting performance.”

By setting Compare My VM up as a community site, visitors are more apt to share with and learn from their peers, than to have a product vendor tell users how and what to do, Simko explained.

So far, Compare My VM has around 300 submissions. Users typically enter their VM info either because they think their VM set up is da bomb, or because they need some help, which is why vKernel added a peer to peer ranking system on the site, Simko said. 

“One person may think their set up for an MS SQL VM supporting X number of users is allocated just perfectly,” but it might not be so hot when viewed outside the four wall of that users data center.  “We give others a chance to rank what they think is the right way, much like how Blog sites give others the ability to rank stories,” Simko said.

As is vKernel’s style, the site is designed so that it is simple to navigate and submit information to, allowing users to find similar profiles and compare them.

“It is a tool to help admins learn, share, and improve,” Simko said. “VKernel has only set up the framework of this site; we are not populating it or dictacting how people should be doing things.  It’s purely a community tool.”

I encourage you to check out the free site and anonymously compare your VM resource allocation profiles with that of your peers. You will either feel pretty good about what you are doing, or really bad – and in that case, you’ll probably learn something.

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