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Performance tuning Xen

     Roger Pau Monn´
                   e
    roger.pau@citrix.com



Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes     Support in OSes      Dom0 tunning     Specific VM options   Conclusions



Xen Architecture

                    Control Domain
                    NetBSD or Linux

                                 device model
                                 (qemu)

                                 toolstack              Paravirtualized
                                                             (PV)                 Fully
                                                           Domain:             Virtualized
                                                        NetBSD or Linux          (HVM)
                                                                                Domain:
                      Hardware          netback            netfront            Windows,
                      Drivers           blkback            blkfront            FreeBSD...



                                                                       Xen Hypervisor

                       I/O Devices             CPU             Memory           Hardware


  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                                Performance tuning Xen                            2 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Paravirtualization

              Virtualization technique developed in the late 90s
              Designed by:
                      XenoServer research project at Cambridge University
                      Intel
                      Microsoft labs
              x86 instructions behave differently in kernel or user mode,
              options for virtualization were full software emulation or
              binary translation.
                      Design a new interface for virtualization
                      Allow guests to collaborate in virtualization
                      Provide new interfaces for virtualized guests that allow to
                      reduce the overhead of virtualization
              The result of this work is what we know today as
              paravirtualiztion

  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            3 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Paravirtualization



              All this changes lead to the following interfaces being
              paravirtualized:
                      Disk and network interfaces
                      Interrupts and timers
                      Boot directly in the mode the kernel wishes to run (32 or
                      64bits)
                      Page tables
                      Privileged instructions




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            4 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Full virtualization




              With the introduction of hardware virtualization extensions
              Xen is able to run unmodified guests
              This requires emulated devices, which are handled by Qemu
              Makes use of nested page tables when available.
              Allows to use PV interfaces if guest has support for them.




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            5 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes     Dom0 tunning           Specific VM options      Conclusions



The full virtualization spectrum

              VS      Software virtualization                                 Poor performance
              VH      Hardware virtualization                                 Room for improvement
              PV      Paravirtualized                                         Optimal performance




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                                                                                          Pr
                                                                               Em
                                                                      In
                                 HVM                        D
                                                            VS        VS        VS        VH
                                 HVM with PV drivers        PV        VS        VS        VH
                                 PVHVM                      PV        PV        VS        VH
                                 PV                         PV        PV       PV         PV



  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                                    6 / 27
Xen Architecture     Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Guest support


              List of OSes and virtualization support:

                                           PV     PVHVM           HVM with PV drivers          HVM
                   Linux (PVOPS)          YES        YES                   YES                  YES
                   Windows                 NO        NO                    YES                  YES
                   NetBSD                 YES        NO                    NO                   YES
                   FreeBSD                 NO        NO                    YES                  YES
                   OpenBSD                 NO        NO                    NO                   YES
                   DragonflyBSD             NO        NO                    NO                   YES




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                               Performance tuning Xen                            7 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes               Support in OSes          Dom0 tunning         Specific VM options   Conclusions



Kernbench

                                                          Kernbench
                          Results: percentage of native, the lower the better
                    140

                    135

                    130

                    125

                    120

                    115

                    110

                    105

                    100

                     95

                     90
                                             PV on HVM 32 bit                   HVM 32 bit                   PV 32 bit
                          PV on HVM 64 bit                      HVM 64 bit                   PV 64 bit




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                                               Performance tuning Xen                               8 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes        Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Specjbb2005
                                           SPECjbb2005
                   Results: percentage of native, the higher the better
                     100

                      90

                      80

                      70

                      60

                      50

                      40

                      30

                      20

                      10

                       0
                                        PV 64 bit                            PV on HVM 64 bit




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                                   Performance tuning Xen                            9 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes          Support in OSes           Dom0 tunning          Specific VM options   Conclusions



Iperf

                                                         Iperf tcp
                        Results: gbit/sec, the higher the better
                    8

                    7

                    6

                    5

                    4

                    3

                    2

                    1

                    0
                          PV 64 bit   PV on HVM 64 bit PV on HVM 32 bit     PV 32 bit    HVM 64 bit      HVM 32 bit




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                                            Performance tuning Xen                               10 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



What virtualization mode should I choose?



              Linux supports several virtualization modes, which one is
              better?
                      Depends on the workload.
              Generally PV mode will provide better performance for IO,
              but when using 64bit guests PV can be slower.
              There isn’t a fixed rule here, the best way to find out is to
              evaluate the workload on the different kind of guests.




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            11 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Dom0




              Dom0 is the most important guest in the Xen infraestructure.
              It can become a bottleneck easily if not configured correctly.
              Dom0 is in charge of creating the guests, but usually also
              provides the backends and device models for guests.
              Xen provides some options to tune performance of Dom0




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            12 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



dom0 mem boot option


              dom0 mem tell Xen how much memory can be used by the
              Dom0.
              If not set all memory will be assigned to the Dom0, and
              ballooning will be used when launching new guests, reducing
              the memory used by the Dom0.
              The value should be set depending on the usage, HVM guests
              consume more memory in the Dom0 because they need a
              Qemu instance.
              If dom0 mem is set make sure to disable ballooning in the
              toolstack by setting autoballoon=0 in /etc/xen/xl.conf.




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            13 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



dom0 max vcpus and dom0 vcpus pin


              dom0 max vcpus: maximum number of CPUs the Dom0 will
              see, also depends on the utilization of the Dom0 and the type
              of guests.
              dom0 vcpus pin: pinning Dom0 vcpus to physical CPUs is a
              good idea for systems running IO intensive guests.
              Setting up the serial cable: although not important for
              performance, setting up a serial cable is really important when
              debugging. For more info:
              http://wiki.xen.org/wiki/Xen_Serial_Console




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            14 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Dom0 Boot tunning options



              For example if I had to set up a Dom0 on a machine with 8
              CPUs and 8GB of RAM I would use the following boot line:
              com1=115200,8n1 console=com1 dom0 mem=1024M
              dom0 max vcpus=2 dom0 vcpus pin.
              More info about boot parameters can be found at:
              http://xenbits.xen.org/docs/unstable/misc/
              xen-command-line.html.




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            15 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



General performance notes



              Always try to use physical disks as backends. Xen has mainly
              two ways of connecting disks to the guest depending on the
              format of the image, if it’s a block device it will be attached
              using blkback, which is inside the Linux kernel and it’s faster.
              Take into account the number of CPUs your physical box has
              and avoid using more VCPUS than PCPUS if running
              performance intensive applications.




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            16 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Pinning CPUs

              You can pin VCPUs to PCPUs in order to obtain better
              performance or to distribute the workload across your CPUs
              to suit your needs. For example low latency VMs can be
              exclusively pinned to different PCPUs.
              cpus: allows to select in which CPUs the guest can run. The
              list can also contain specific CPUs where the guest is not
              allowed to run. Specifying ”0-3,5,ˆ1” allows the guest to run
              on CPUs 0,2,3,5.
              If Dom0 is pinned to certain PCPUs avoid running guests on
              those PCPUs to obtain better performance. If Dom0 is pinned
              to CPU 0, use the following CPU mask in order to prevent
              other guests from running on CPU 0: ”ˆ0”.


  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            17 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Scheduler options

              The Xen scheduler has several options that can also be
              tunned from the guest configuration file, in order to give a
              certain guest more share from the processor or to schedule it
              more frequently.
              cpu weight: weight of the domain in terms of CPU utilization.
              For example a domain with a weight of 512 will get twice as
              much CPU than a domain with a weight of 256. Values range
              from 1 to 65535.
              cap: fixes the maximum amount of CPU a domain is able to
              consume. Expressed in percentage of one physical CPU. 100
              is one CPU, 50 half a CPU, 400 four CPUs.
              More info can be found at http:
              //xenbits.xen.org/docs/unstable/man/xl.cfg.5.html

  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            18 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes     Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Driver Domains I

                    Control Domain
                    NetBSD or Linux

                                 device model
                                 (qemu)

                                 toolstack                                     Paravirtualized
                                                                                    (PV)
                                                                                  Domain:
                                                                               NetBSD or Linux
                      Hardware          netback                                    netfront
                      Drivers           blkback                                    blkfront




                                                                      Xen Hypervisor

                       I/O Devices             CPU             Memory           Hardware


  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                                Performance tuning Xen                            19 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes     Support in OSes      Dom0 tunning     Specific VM options   Conclusions



Driver Domains II

                    Control Domain
                    NetBSD or Linux

                                 device model
                                 (qemu)

                                 toolstack                                      Paravirtualized
                                                          Driver Domain
                                                                                     (PV)
                                                                                   Domain:
                                                                                NetBSD or Linux
                      Hardware          netback                    netback           netfront
                      Drivers           blkback                    blkback           blkfront




                                                                       Xen Hypervisor

                       I/O Devices             CPU             Memory           Hardware


  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                                Performance tuning Xen                            20 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Driver Domains III




              Driver domains allow to offload work normally done in Dom0
              to other domains.
              It also provides better security, less surface for exploits in
              Dom0.
              This is a current work-in-process.




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            21 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



HVM specific I



              HVM guest require the usage of assisted paging, in order for
              the guest to see the memory area as contiguous when it’s not.

                      HAP: (Hardware Assisted Paging) is used by default since it
                      tends to perform better under most workloads
                      shadow: was introduced before HAP, and can provide better
                      performance under certain workloads that have low TLB
                      locality (for example databases or java applications).
              Again, the best way to know is to try the workload by yourself.




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            22 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



HVM specific II



              HVM domains require a Qemu instance in Dom0 to perform
              the necessary device emulation.
              This might be a bottleneck if running a lot of HVM domains
              in the same node, since each one requires a Qemu instance
              running in Dom0 that uses both Dom0 CPU and Memory.
              To avoid this, we can launch the Qemu process in a different
              domain called ”Stubdomain”.
              This allows to offload work from Dom0.




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            23 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes     Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning        Specific VM options   Conclusions



HVM specific III

                    Control Domain
                    NetBSD or Linux

                                 device model
                                 (qemu)
                                                                                          Fully
                                 toolstack                                             Virtualized
                                                                                         (HVM)
                                                                                        Domain:
                                                                                       Windows,
                                                                                       FreeBSD...
                      Hardware          netback
                      Drivers           blkback




                                                                      Xen Hypervisor

                       I/O Devices             CPU             Memory           Hardware


  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                                Performance tuning Xen                             24 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes     Support in OSes      Dom0 tunning      Specific VM options   Conclusions



HVM specific IV

                    Control Domain
                    NetBSD or Linux

                                 device model
                                 (qemu)
                                                                                          Fully
                                 toolstack                   stubdomain                Virtualized
                                                                                         (HVM)
                                                                   MiniOS               Domain:
                                                                   Qemu                Windows,
                                                                                       FreeBSD...
                      Hardware          netback
                      Drivers           blkback




                                                                       Xen Hypervisor

                       I/O Devices             CPU             Memory           Hardware


  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                                Performance tuning Xen                             25 / 27
Xen Architecture    Xen virtualization modes   Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Conclusions



              Xen offers a wide variety of virtualization modes.
              The best way to know which mode will bring better
              performance is to try it, although there are several tips that
              apply to all guests.
              We are constantly working on performance improvements, so
              keep updated in order to get the best performance.




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                              Performance tuning Xen                            26 / 27
Xen Architecture     Xen virtualization modes    Support in OSes    Dom0 tunning       Specific VM options   Conclusions



Q&A




                                                  Thanks
                                                Questions?
                   http://wiki.xen.org/wiki/Xen_Best_Practices
                   http://wiki.xen.org/wiki/Xen_Common_Problems




  Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013                                Performance tuning Xen                            27 / 27

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  • 1. Performance tuning Xen Roger Pau Monn´ e roger.pau@citrix.com Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013
  • 2. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Xen Architecture Control Domain NetBSD or Linux device model (qemu) toolstack Paravirtualized (PV) Fully Domain: Virtualized NetBSD or Linux (HVM) Domain: Hardware netback netfront Windows, Drivers blkback blkfront FreeBSD... Xen Hypervisor I/O Devices CPU Memory Hardware Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 2 / 27
  • 3. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Paravirtualization Virtualization technique developed in the late 90s Designed by: XenoServer research project at Cambridge University Intel Microsoft labs x86 instructions behave differently in kernel or user mode, options for virtualization were full software emulation or binary translation. Design a new interface for virtualization Allow guests to collaborate in virtualization Provide new interfaces for virtualized guests that allow to reduce the overhead of virtualization The result of this work is what we know today as paravirtualiztion Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 3 / 27
  • 4. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Paravirtualization All this changes lead to the following interfaces being paravirtualized: Disk and network interfaces Interrupts and timers Boot directly in the mode the kernel wishes to run (32 or 64bits) Page tables Privileged instructions Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 4 / 27
  • 5. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Full virtualization With the introduction of hardware virtualization extensions Xen is able to run unmodified guests This requires emulated devices, which are handled by Qemu Makes use of nested page tables when available. Allows to use PV interfaces if guest has support for them. Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 5 / 27
  • 6. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions The full virtualization spectrum VS Software virtualization Poor performance VH Hardware virtualization Room for improvement PV Paravirtualized Optimal performance es ns ge str rd bl tio s a er bo uc tim k an ge her or tw ot d ta pa in an m ne d d ts ed d up ile an at rr iv ul isk te Pr Em In HVM D VS VS VS VH HVM with PV drivers PV VS VS VH PVHVM PV PV VS VH PV PV PV PV PV Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 6 / 27
  • 7. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Guest support List of OSes and virtualization support: PV PVHVM HVM with PV drivers HVM Linux (PVOPS) YES YES YES YES Windows NO NO YES YES NetBSD YES NO NO YES FreeBSD NO NO YES YES OpenBSD NO NO NO YES DragonflyBSD NO NO NO YES Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 7 / 27
  • 8. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Kernbench Kernbench Results: percentage of native, the lower the better 140 135 130 125 120 115 110 105 100 95 90 PV on HVM 32 bit HVM 32 bit PV 32 bit PV on HVM 64 bit HVM 64 bit PV 64 bit Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 8 / 27
  • 9. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Specjbb2005 SPECjbb2005 Results: percentage of native, the higher the better 100 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 PV 64 bit PV on HVM 64 bit Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 9 / 27
  • 10. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Iperf Iperf tcp Results: gbit/sec, the higher the better 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 PV 64 bit PV on HVM 64 bit PV on HVM 32 bit PV 32 bit HVM 64 bit HVM 32 bit Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 10 / 27
  • 11. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions What virtualization mode should I choose? Linux supports several virtualization modes, which one is better? Depends on the workload. Generally PV mode will provide better performance for IO, but when using 64bit guests PV can be slower. There isn’t a fixed rule here, the best way to find out is to evaluate the workload on the different kind of guests. Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 11 / 27
  • 12. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Dom0 Dom0 is the most important guest in the Xen infraestructure. It can become a bottleneck easily if not configured correctly. Dom0 is in charge of creating the guests, but usually also provides the backends and device models for guests. Xen provides some options to tune performance of Dom0 Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 12 / 27
  • 13. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions dom0 mem boot option dom0 mem tell Xen how much memory can be used by the Dom0. If not set all memory will be assigned to the Dom0, and ballooning will be used when launching new guests, reducing the memory used by the Dom0. The value should be set depending on the usage, HVM guests consume more memory in the Dom0 because they need a Qemu instance. If dom0 mem is set make sure to disable ballooning in the toolstack by setting autoballoon=0 in /etc/xen/xl.conf. Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 13 / 27
  • 14. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions dom0 max vcpus and dom0 vcpus pin dom0 max vcpus: maximum number of CPUs the Dom0 will see, also depends on the utilization of the Dom0 and the type of guests. dom0 vcpus pin: pinning Dom0 vcpus to physical CPUs is a good idea for systems running IO intensive guests. Setting up the serial cable: although not important for performance, setting up a serial cable is really important when debugging. For more info: http://wiki.xen.org/wiki/Xen_Serial_Console Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 14 / 27
  • 15. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Dom0 Boot tunning options For example if I had to set up a Dom0 on a machine with 8 CPUs and 8GB of RAM I would use the following boot line: com1=115200,8n1 console=com1 dom0 mem=1024M dom0 max vcpus=2 dom0 vcpus pin. More info about boot parameters can be found at: http://xenbits.xen.org/docs/unstable/misc/ xen-command-line.html. Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 15 / 27
  • 16. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions General performance notes Always try to use physical disks as backends. Xen has mainly two ways of connecting disks to the guest depending on the format of the image, if it’s a block device it will be attached using blkback, which is inside the Linux kernel and it’s faster. Take into account the number of CPUs your physical box has and avoid using more VCPUS than PCPUS if running performance intensive applications. Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 16 / 27
  • 17. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Pinning CPUs You can pin VCPUs to PCPUs in order to obtain better performance or to distribute the workload across your CPUs to suit your needs. For example low latency VMs can be exclusively pinned to different PCPUs. cpus: allows to select in which CPUs the guest can run. The list can also contain specific CPUs where the guest is not allowed to run. Specifying ”0-3,5,ˆ1” allows the guest to run on CPUs 0,2,3,5. If Dom0 is pinned to certain PCPUs avoid running guests on those PCPUs to obtain better performance. If Dom0 is pinned to CPU 0, use the following CPU mask in order to prevent other guests from running on CPU 0: ”ˆ0”. Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 17 / 27
  • 18. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Scheduler options The Xen scheduler has several options that can also be tunned from the guest configuration file, in order to give a certain guest more share from the processor or to schedule it more frequently. cpu weight: weight of the domain in terms of CPU utilization. For example a domain with a weight of 512 will get twice as much CPU than a domain with a weight of 256. Values range from 1 to 65535. cap: fixes the maximum amount of CPU a domain is able to consume. Expressed in percentage of one physical CPU. 100 is one CPU, 50 half a CPU, 400 four CPUs. More info can be found at http: //xenbits.xen.org/docs/unstable/man/xl.cfg.5.html Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 18 / 27
  • 19. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Driver Domains I Control Domain NetBSD or Linux device model (qemu) toolstack Paravirtualized (PV) Domain: NetBSD or Linux Hardware netback netfront Drivers blkback blkfront Xen Hypervisor I/O Devices CPU Memory Hardware Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 19 / 27
  • 20. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Driver Domains II Control Domain NetBSD or Linux device model (qemu) toolstack Paravirtualized Driver Domain (PV) Domain: NetBSD or Linux Hardware netback netback netfront Drivers blkback blkback blkfront Xen Hypervisor I/O Devices CPU Memory Hardware Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 20 / 27
  • 21. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Driver Domains III Driver domains allow to offload work normally done in Dom0 to other domains. It also provides better security, less surface for exploits in Dom0. This is a current work-in-process. Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 21 / 27
  • 22. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions HVM specific I HVM guest require the usage of assisted paging, in order for the guest to see the memory area as contiguous when it’s not. HAP: (Hardware Assisted Paging) is used by default since it tends to perform better under most workloads shadow: was introduced before HAP, and can provide better performance under certain workloads that have low TLB locality (for example databases or java applications). Again, the best way to know is to try the workload by yourself. Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 22 / 27
  • 23. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions HVM specific II HVM domains require a Qemu instance in Dom0 to perform the necessary device emulation. This might be a bottleneck if running a lot of HVM domains in the same node, since each one requires a Qemu instance running in Dom0 that uses both Dom0 CPU and Memory. To avoid this, we can launch the Qemu process in a different domain called ”Stubdomain”. This allows to offload work from Dom0. Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 23 / 27
  • 24. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions HVM specific III Control Domain NetBSD or Linux device model (qemu) Fully toolstack Virtualized (HVM) Domain: Windows, FreeBSD... Hardware netback Drivers blkback Xen Hypervisor I/O Devices CPU Memory Hardware Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 24 / 27
  • 25. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions HVM specific IV Control Domain NetBSD or Linux device model (qemu) Fully toolstack stubdomain Virtualized (HVM) MiniOS Domain: Qemu Windows, FreeBSD... Hardware netback Drivers blkback Xen Hypervisor I/O Devices CPU Memory Hardware Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 25 / 27
  • 26. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Conclusions Xen offers a wide variety of virtualization modes. The best way to know which mode will bring better performance is to try it, although there are several tips that apply to all guests. We are constantly working on performance improvements, so keep updated in order to get the best performance. Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 26 / 27
  • 27. Xen Architecture Xen virtualization modes Support in OSes Dom0 tunning Specific VM options Conclusions Q&A Thanks Questions? http://wiki.xen.org/wiki/Xen_Best_Practices http://wiki.xen.org/wiki/Xen_Common_Problems Antwerp – 8th of April, 2013 Performance tuning Xen 27 / 27