Using VMware Labs IOAnalyzer VM to Measure Throughput and Latencies Across Multiple ESXi Servers

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STEPS TO DEPLOY AND USE IOANALYZER VM TO MEASURE THROUGHPUT AND LATENCIES ACROSS MANY ESXi HOSTS
1. Download Ioanayzer from VMware Labs from http://labs.vmware.com/flings/io-analyzer
Be aware that this is from VMware labs and is considered a ‘fling’ so it is not to be used for ongoing performance monitoring. We use it to do compare throughput and latencies before and after VirtuCache for the duration of the PoC, barring the gotchas / issues listed at the end of the page below, things work fine.
2. Import OVA (It has 2 vdisks, one is 10 GB and another is 100 MB) with all the default settings. It needs 2 GB RAM. Keep the recommended disk setting “Thick Provisioned Eager Zeroed”
3. Login to the VM the first time. Logging in to the VM is required to start the application (root pwd is vmware)
4. Change sampling interval to say 5 minutes ( 300 seconds) like below
http://:8180/IOAnalyzer/ioanalyzer/script?command=set-vtop-interval&value=300
The minimal snapshot interval is 6 seconds or longer, and the value must be an integer.
Note that this change is NOT persistent, so you’ll have to do it every time you reboot the controller VM or restart its tomcat server.

5. Goto Home > Workload Configuration > Add all the Host IP addresses that you want to collect data for.
6. Do not do anything in the ‘Add Workload Entry’ box, since you will not be running workloads using this VM, we will only be collecting latency and throughput stats called ‘listening mode’)
7. In ‘Workload Configuration’ box, type a relevant name for the workload and save it. ‘Test Type’ should show ‘Listening’, which means that it will only collect stats from all the hosts listed and it will not collect guest level stats.
8. Now goto ‘Scheduler’ (clock icon) and load the test that was created and schedule the test. You should see the test running in the ‘Test Manager’ below.
9. Once the test is complete, goto Test Manager Again, and click on the ‘Results’ hyperlink next to the test. Now you can see nicely formatted graphs etc for the host, VMs etc. More importantly you can download results (.tgz) format.
10. The tarball results has esxtop data that can plotted using perfmon and excel, timeseries data that can be imported in excel and graphs as images. Ioanalyzer documentation explains the format for timeseries data.
Keep in mind the zip file generated is at the rate of 45KB / minute / per Physical Server ( for 5 second sampling interval ). So a 5 day test will result in a 300MB results file.

CURRENT LIST OF ISSUES WITH IONALYZER TOOL
1. The name given to the IOanalyzer VM should not contain spaces or commas.
2. Charts are not shown for VMs that have spaces or commas in them
3. The esxtop output file (.csv file in the .tgz) has lot of data zeroed out, much like esxtop. So the esxtop output for long running tests is useless.
4. When the results file is large it does not download – in which case winscp into the IOanalyzer VM and download the .tgz results file from /var/www/expts/

SUCCESSFULLY TESTED THAT
1. The IOanalyzer captures data for a new VM that is generated, unlike esxtop job that is run in a batch mode.
2. 5 day test with sampling interval at 5 seconds does work, however a large 300MB file isgenerated
Using the http instructions – http://:8180/IOAnalyzer/ioanalyzer/script?command=set-vtop-interval&value=300
We tested that sampling interval can be set to 5 minutes

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