Performance Brief
Intel® Xeon® Processor 5500
                                Intel® Virtualization Technology
Parallels W...
To test concurrent performance, GeoFrame and Petrel were run                                                              ...
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Intel® Virtualization Technology & Parallels Bring Native Graphics Innovation to Virtual Machines


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Intel and Parallels partner to deliver near-native graphics performance for virtual desktop users.

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Intel® Virtualization Technology & Parallels Bring Native Graphics Innovation to Virtual Machines

  1. 1. Performance Brief Intel® Xeon® Processor 5500 Intel® Virtualization Technology Parallels Workstation Extreme and Parallels Bring Native Graphics Innovation to Virtual Machines Visualizing complex multi-OS workloads concurrently “High-performance Geoscientists and engineers in the oil and gas industry require multiple workstations, virtualization on each running a different operating system and different business-critical applications. Intel Xeon processor It’s an expensive computing strategy; it hampers a user’s ability to efficiently sift 5500 series-based through complex information and it drives up power consumption and IT maintenance costs per user. Now there’s a more productive and cost-effective way to operate in workstations is a game- these resource-intensive, graphical workflow-driven environments. changing capability. We With workstations based on the latest Intel® Xeon® processor 5500∆ series and Parallels Workstation can allocate multiple Extreme* virtualization software, engineers and geoscientists can run multiple high-end Linux* and cores, up to 64 GB of Windows* applications concurrently on a single workstation and realize near-native performance (95 to memory and a dedicated 100 percent of a dedicated workstation). Even complex graphics are rendered at full speed, since Intel® Virtualization Technology◊ for Directed I/O (Intel® VT-d) enables fully accelerated graphics performance graphics card to each in a virtualized environment. Users can run all their applications on a single system and experience the virtual machine. The power of a high-end workstation for each application. It’s a more productive and satisfying way to work, results are spectacular.” and it can dramatically reduce IT costs. — Russ Sagert, Geoscience Unprecedented performance in a virtualized workstation Technical Advisor – North To validate the power of this new paradigm, engineers from Schlumberger, the world’s leading oil field America, Schlumberger services provider, ran performance tests for two of their most demanding applications, GeoFrame* and Petrel.* These applications help engineers analyze complex geologic and geophysical data to evaluate reservoir potential and optimize production strategies. GeoFrame runs on Linux. Petrel runs on Windows. Normally, Schlumberger’s engineers run these applications on two separate workstations.
  2. 2. To test concurrent performance, GeoFrame and Petrel were run 570x performance increase for an application running in a Parallels virtual machine together on an Intel® Xeon® processor-based workstation. Petrel with emulated graphics vs. assigned graphics was run on a Windows Vista* 64-bit host operating system. Geo- Assigned Frame was run in a virtual machine, using Parallels Workstation Native host: 30 frames/sec Native host: graphics: 30 frames/sec 30 frames/sec Extreme and Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.3. • Test 1: Running on an Intel® Xeon® processor 5400 series-based workstation: Petrel ran at full native speed, but performance for Emulated graphics: 1 frame/19 sec GeoFrame was massively degraded, with graphic refresh rates of only (.053 frames/sec) 1 frame every 19 seconds (versus 30 frames per second for Petrel). Intel® Xeon® Intel® Xeon® processor 5400 processor 5500 • Test 2: Running on the latest Intel Xeon processor 5500 series- series-based series-based based workstation: Both applications ran at full native speed, with workstation workstation graphics refresh rates of 30 frames per second, a 570x improvement Petrel graphics performance (running on a Windows Vista 64-bit host) for the virtualized application. According to Russ Sagert, Schlumberger’s GeoFrame graphics performance (running on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.3 in a Parallels Workstation Extreme virtual machine) Geoscience Technical Advisor for North America, “Our engineers were blown away by the performance. We hammered these machines Figure 1. Breakthrough graphics performance in a virtual machine – with extreme workloads that stressed every aspect of the system. An Intel Xeon processor 5500 series-based workstation running Parallels Workstation Extreme delivers near native performance for high-end Amazingly, the new workstation based on the Intel Xeon processor applications running in virtual machines.1 5500 series provided performance enabling this multiple OS, multiple application environment to be usable for the first time.” • Optimized Workstations and Graphics Cards: For current supported configurations including workstation platforms, graphic cards, and The Next Generation of Workstation Innovation host/guest OSs, visit It took coordinated innovation on several fronts to deliver this massive increase in virtualized workstation performance. Better Productivity at Lower Cost If you have engineers or geoscientists juggling multiple workstations, • The Intel Xeon processor 5500 series: With its larger and consider consolidating those systems onto a fully configured Intel more efficient cache, greater memory capacity (up to 192 GB), Xeon processor 5500 series-based workstation running Parallels and 3.5x boost in system bandwidth, this processor provides Workstation Extreme. Creativity and productivity will be unleashed extreme scalability for technical workloads. It also supports Intel with a powerful workstation upgrade that streamlines the work VT-d in the chipset, which enables direct assignment of graphics interface, reduces office noise and clutter, and delivers major perfor- and network cards to virtual machines. mance gains. Your IT organization will also benefit, through lower • Parallels Workstation Extreme: This innovative virtualization soft- capital, management, support, space and energy costs, plus the ware leverages the Parallels FastLane* Architecture, Intel Virtualization ability to standardize on a single OS image while easily addressing Technology (including Intel VT-d), and dynamic resource allocation to alternative requirements. deliver unprecedented performance for high-end applications running concurrently. It also provides quick access to data and a great multi-OS Learn More user experience with Parallels SmartX* technologies. ∆ Intel processor numbers are not a measure of performance. Processor numbers differentiate features within each processor family, not across different processor families. See for details. ◊ Intel® Virtualization Technology requires a computer system with an enabled Intel® processor, BIOS, virtual machine monitor (VMM) and, for some uses, certain platform software enabled for it. Functionality, performance or other benefits will vary depending on hardware and software configurations and may require a BIOS update. Software applications may not be compatible with all operating systems. Please check with your application vendor. 1 Workstation Configurations – Test 1: HP Z800* workstation with 2X Intel® Xeon® processor 5500 series, 2X Intel® Xeon® processor W5580, 3.20GHz, NVIDIA Quadro FX3800, FX4800 and FX5800, 48 GB RAM, 1333 MHz DDR3, Vista-64 SP1 Enterprise Edition. Test 2: HP xw8600* workstation with 2X Intel® Xeon® processor 5400 series, 2X Intel® Xeon® processor E5430, 2.66 GHz, NVIDIA Quadro FX3800, FX4800 and FX5800, 32 GB RAM, 1066 MHz DDR2, Vista-64 SP1 Enterprise Edition. INFORMATION IN THIS DOCUMENT IS PROVIDED IN CONNECTION WITH INTEL® PRODUCTS. NO LICENSE, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, BY ESTOPPEL OR OTHERWISE, TO ANY INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS IS GRANTED BY THIS DOCUMENT. EXCEPT AS PROVIDED IN INTEL’S TERMS AND CONDITIONS OF SALE FOR SUCH PRODUCTS, INTEL ASSUMES NO LIABILITY WHATSOEVER, AND INTEL DISCLAIMS ANY EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTY, RELATING TO SALE AND/OR USE OF INTEL PRODUCTS INCLUDING LIABILITY OR WARRANTIES RELATING TO FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, MERCHANTABILITY, OR INFRINGEMENT OF ANY PATENT, COPYRIGHT OR OTHER INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHT. UNLESS OTHERWISE AGREED IN WRITING BY INTEL, THE INTEL PRODUCTS ARE NOT DESIGNED NOR INTENDED FOR ANY APPLICATION IN WHICH THE FAILURE OF THE INTEL PRODUCT COULD CREATE A SITUATION WHERE PERSONAL INJURY OR DEATH MAY OCCUR. Performance tests and ratings are measured using specific computer systems and/or components and reflect the approximate performance of Intel products as measured by those tests. Any difference in system hardware or software design or configuration may affect actual performance. Buyers should consult other sources of information to evaluate the performance of systems or components they are considering purchasing. For more information on performance tests and on the performance of Intel products, visit Intel Performance Benchmark Limitations. Intel may make changes to specifications and product descriptions at any time, without notice. Designers must not rely on the absence or characteristics of any features or instructions marked “reserved” or “undefined.” Intel reserves these for future definition and shall have no responsibility whatsoever for conflicts or incompatibilities arising from future changes to them. The information here is subject to change without notice. Do not finalize a design with this information. The products described in this document may contain design defects or errors known as errata which may cause the product to deviate from published specifications. Current characterized errata are available on request. Contact your local Intel sales office or your distributor to obtain the latest specifications and before placing your product order. Copies of documents which have an order number and are referenced in this document, or other Intel literature, may be obtained by calling 1-800-548-4725, or by visiting Intel’s Web site at Copyright © 2009 Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, the Intel logo, Xeon, and Xeon inside are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries. *Other names and brands may be claimed as the property of others. Printed in USA 0409/TJN/OCG/XX/PDF Please Recycle 321839-001US