#IAMMEC Session Report: Virtualization in the New Exchange

  • Supported
    • Hypervisors
      • HyperV
      • 3rd Party Hypervisors
    • Host-based Clustering
      • All roles
    • Exchange Roles
      • All roles
    • Storage
      • Block level
        • iSCSI, FC, pass-through, etc.
      • Same requirements as Ex2010
        • Support for SMB3 file shares for specific limited scenario
          • Guest on 2012 with guest VHD’s on SMB3
          • CANNOT point guest to SMB3 share (will fail)
          • Still will not support running on NFS-based VMWare guest location
    • Migration
      • All Ex2013 roles
      • Never want to quick-migrate a machine on a DAG
        • Hyper-V specific
        • Live Migration/vMotion completely supported
    • Jetstress testing in guests
      • Yes, on supported Windows hypervisors or ESX 4.1 (or newer)
      • Used to be an issue due to perf counters not being accurate
  • Not Supported
    • Dynamic memory & Memory Overcommit
      • Not supported for any 2013 role
    • Hypervisor Snapshots
      • Not Supported for any 2013 role
    • Differencing/Delta Disks
      • Not Supported for any 2013 role
    • Apps on the root
      • Only deploy management, monitoring, AV, etc.
    • Significant processor oversubscription
      • Limited to 2:1, best practice is 1:1
        • Start hitting at CPU contraints
          • Delivery throughput reduction = queue growth
          • Content indexing throughput reduction = increased IOPS
          • Store ROP processing throughput reduction = RPC latency & end-user pain
  • Proper Exchange sizing ensures that resources are available on-demand, so don’t allow hypervisors to yank those resources away.
  • Server 2012
    • Many deployment-blocking limits removed
    • Customers who virtualize 2013 will have a great experience on Server 2012 HyperV
    • Important to be aware of what does and doesn’t work (and supportability limits)
  • Multirole vs. Single Role on Virtual
    • Deploy it the same way as you would the physicals
  • Hyper-V Gotchas
    • 10% Overhead for Hyper-V Only

There was a tweet that gave a synopsis of a previous duplicate of the session: “Don’t virtualize Exchange.”  This is the wrong answer.  Virtualize, but do so correctly.  Don’t half-ass it, and you’ll pull it off splendidly.

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