Which vSphere memory management techniques do you use?

vSphere includes a number of extremely power memory management techniques in its feature arsenal.

  • VMware Oversubscription/Overcommit. Allows administrators to assign more aggregate RAM to virtual machines than is actually physically available in the server.
  • Transparent Page Sharing.This is basically a deduplication method applied to RAM rather than storage
  • Guest Ballooning.When VMware Tools is installed inside a virtual machine, along with everything else is a memory balloon process. The guest operating system can swap processes out to help free up memory that is then assigned to the balloon.
  • Memory compression attempts to fit multiple pages of RAM into a smaller number of pages in order to postpone for as long as possible the need for the hypervisor to swap to disk. Disk swapping is expensive in terms of performance.
  • Swapping. While certainly not preferred as it can decimate performance, swapping memory to and from disk is a last resort method by which to manage memory.

What kinds of efficiency do you see in your own organization with the various management techniques?

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