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Issue No. 08 - August (2009 vol. 58)
ISSN: 0018-9340
pp: 1111-1125
Sriram Govindan , The Pennsylvania State University, University Park
Jeonghwan Choi , The Pennsylvania State University, University Park
Arjun R. Nath , The Pennsylvania State University, University Park
Amitayu Das , The Pennsylvania State University, University Park
Bhuvan Urgaonkar , The Pennsylvania State University, University Park
Anand Sivasubramaniam , The Pennsylvania State University, University Park
Recent advances in software and architectural support for server virtualization have created interest in using this technology in the design of consolidated hosting platforms. Since virtualization enables easier and faster application migration as well as secure colocation of antagonistic applications, higher degrees of server consolidation are likely to result in such virtualization-based hosting platforms (VHPs). We identify two shortcomings in existing virtual machine monitors (VMMs) that prove to be obstacles in operating hosting platforms, such as Internet data centers, under conditions of such high consolidation: 1) CPU schedulers that are agnostic to the communication behavior of modern, multitier applications and 2) inadequate or inaccurate mechanisms for accounting the CPU overheads of I/O virtualization. We develop a new communication-aware CPU scheduling algorithm and a CPU usage accounting mechanism. We implement our algorithms in the Xen VMM and build a prototype VHP on a cluster of 36 servers. Our experimental evaluation with realistic Internet server applications and benchmarks demonstrates the performance/cost benefits and the wide applicability of our algorithms. For example, the TPC-W benchmark exhibited improvements in average response times between 20 percent and 35 percent for a variety of consolidation scenarios. A streaming media server hosted on our prototype VHP was able to satisfactorily service up to 3.5 times as many clients as one running on the default Xen.
Virtual machine monitor, hosting platform, scheduler-induced delay, Xen.

A. Das, J. Choi, A. R. Nath, B. Urgaonkar, A. Sivasubramaniam and S. Govindan, "Xen and Co.: Communication-Aware CPU Management in Consolidated Xen-Based Hosting Platforms," in IEEE Transactions on Computers, vol. 58, no. , pp. 1111-1125, 2009.
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