Webinar I did with XenAppblog – “GPU in virtualization, learn why it’s important” now available

Hi All

I am very excited to share this great news with you all. I did a webinar with fellow CTP  Trond Eirik Håvarstein from XenAppBlog.com, and we had a special guest surprise Jeroen Van De Kamp CTP and CTO, LoginVSI announcing ground breaking stuff in the webinar. We had over 700 people signed up for the Webinar, if you was among the crowd that missed the opportunity to see the webinar here is your chance, the webinar is now available for everyone for free. There was a lot of Q/A and I will the next couple of days reply to all the Q/A and make them available in this article.

The webinar has been re-mastered and the audio & graphical demo videos is even better now  than in the actual webinar, make sure to check it out now:

Download the presentation here (PDF format)

Summary of webinar product announcements from LoginVSI, Lakeside Software, Uberagent for Splunk.

loginvsi
LoginVSI upcoming new version support’s GPU benchmark…

LoginVSI is working on next version that will support benchmark, capacity planning, stress testing the “missing component in virtualization” GPU. If you are interested you can write to get access to the beta version of LoginVSI.

Here are some screen shots from the session…. watch it to here what Jeroen tells about the upcoming version

Note if you want to get more info on the next version of LoginVSI that supports GPU, write to info@loginvsi.com subject GFX

LoginVSI_gpu_01 LoginVSI_gpu_02

LoginVSI_gpu_03

 

Lakeside

Lakeside Software Monitoring/Assessing NVIDIA GRID

Another groundbreaking product announcement was from Lakeside Software, they are about to release version 7 of Systrack that will support NVIDIA GPU Monitoring/assessing.

Application Graphics Benchmarking

The transformation of an existing software portfolio first begins with the identification of all of the actively used software packages in the environment. The added complication in the case of a project to begin advanced application delivery is the need to understand multiple facets of usage: resource consumption, graphics utilization, frequency of use, user access habits, and mobility needs. Because the state of IT is already so complex it only becomes possible to fully understand and plan with a complete set of descriptive information that really characterizes the unique aspects of every environment. Of particular interest is the ability to first identify applications that have GPU demands, and then begin to segment them into tiers of utilization. SysTrack continually collects information about software packages as they’re used and normalizes all data points for cross platform comparison. One of the key performance parameters that’s identified in this process is a graphical intensity measure (Graphics Index) that provides a way to identify those applications in the portfolio that have higher GPU demands than others. With this critical information it becomes possible to segment the portfolio into groupings based on their requirements for specific resources. By tying a general sense of which applications have peak demand to total length of usage it becomes easier to start developing a portfolio made up of different combinations of usage styles. This includes separating applications that may be used by a small set of the population with intense requirements versus widely used applications with a smaller footprint. Of course, this also allows for much deeper analytics centering on the behaviors of users that is quite important in planning the GPU profiles in use in provisioning. Figure 1 displays this relationship in a bubble chart format, this format groups applications based on their similar characteristics presenting clusters of similar applications in larger bubbles. The vast majority of applications exist in the “low graphics demand – Low Time Active” area in the bottom left, while only a select few have either high graphics demand or high time active.

lakesidesoftware_systrack7-gpu2

SysTrackTracks graphics usage frequency across on physical clients and allows you to group users based on graphics usage & frequency

A natural expansion of this is grouping users into distinct workload types to understand how best to configure the profile types and GPU assignments for users. Once the target applications and users have been characterized and a plan has been developed it’s critical to begin the process of sizing the environment. This includes determining the architecture, sizing the desktops and servers that will be worked with, and identifying resources that will be required to support the needs of the planned deployment.

Resource Modeling & Capacity Planning

NVIDIA Marketplace report from Systrack’sVirtual Machine Planner (VMP) outlines the number of users that fall into different use cases making it easier to forecast how many users per board can be allocated

With a complete portfolio plan it now becomes possible to move into the next phase and start creating a model for what resources will be required for a complete environment. Because each of the users have been fully characterized throughout the assessment data collection interval it’s possible to use SysTrack’s Virtual Machine Planner (VMP) for powerful mathematical analysis to provide deep insight into infrastructure provisioning. The first component of this involves using the profile information above to help develop a plan for what kind of solution will be provided to the end-users. By segmenting the population into different delivery strategies using Citrix FlexCast options as a guideline, a more complete and accurate picture of how the net new environment will operate can be created. An additional benefit of segmentation is the ability to take advantage of grouping by general graphics consumption to identify the number of GPUs required for the environment based on the user density information for each profile type

vgpu-profile

The NVIDIA MarketPlace report from VMP outlines the number of users that fall into the various use cases (e.g. “high” for a designer or higher end power user), making it much easier to forecast how many users per board can be allocated and in turn how many total boards may be needed

lakesidesoftware_systrack7-gpu0

This information creates an easy to use design for a set of user profiles, both for the actual desktop delivery and for the vGPU assignment. By ensuring the best possible analysis of the environment prior to the actual deployment the end-user experience is much simpler to forecast and control. This results in higher end-user satisfaction and a shorter transition time.

User Experience Optimization

After the successful implementation of the solution the environment still requires observation to prevent interruption of service and the potential for productivity impact. The best way to ensure optimal end-user service quality is to have a real-time alerting and analytical engine to collect and report instantly on degradation of any aspect of the systems the users interact with. SysTrack provides this in the form of proactive alerting, detailed system analysis in Resolve, and aggregate trending through Enterprise and Site Visualizer. An even more interesting feature is vScape, a tool designed to examine utilization across multiple virtual machines and correlate resource consumption to concurrency of application utilization. vScape provides real-time updates of all of the application usage across all virtual platforms in an enterprise, including information about what applications are currently demanding GPU resources. It also provides insight into other resource demands as well, such as CPU, memory, and I/O. This can help automate the discovery of co-scheduled or highly concurrent applications to pinpoint the root cause of oversubscription issues much more quickly. It also provides key insight into guest health characteristics with trending to correlate precisely which events may lead to service degradation

lakesidesoftware_systrack7-gpu3

Another key feature introduced in SysTrack version 7.0 is the result of close collaboration with NVIDIA to leverage APIs presented in the guest operating system. This allows the capture of detailed GPU performance metrics to correlate vGPU consumption to end-user service quality. Specifically, with NVIDIA drivers present in the guest OS or on a physical system, the GPU utilization and key metrics (see table 2 for a sample of selected metrics) from the graphics card can be captured and analyzed in the same way as CPU or other system metrics are currently in SysTrack.

lakesidesoftware_systrack7-gpu1

In Systrack 7 after provisioning users in VDI environment the IT admins can monitors performance, which enables to optimize density over time.

This completes the set of KPIs used in SysTrack to calculate the end-user experience score, including categories like resource limitation, network configuration, latency, guest configuration, protocol specific data for ICA, and virtual infrastructure. With a complete set of relevant information the proactive and trending health analysis provided in SysTrack yields a thorough analysis in an easy to understand, quantitative score that summarizes performance on an environmental, group based, or individual system level.

NVIDIA GPU Monitoring/Assessing: (Works with all NVIDIA GPU) Quadro, Kepler, GRID

 

You will be able to look at following parameters:

  • Device ID
  • Power State
  • GPU Usage
  • Frame Buffer Usage
  • Video Usage
  • Bus Usage
  • Memory Usage (Bytes and Percent)
  • # of Apps
  • Temperatures and Fan RPMS

Use this data to accurately plan and size GRID and HDX 3D Pro deployments based on actually observed usage and utilization.

Monitor users post-deployment to provide the best user experience

I recommend reading the whitepaper Lakeside Software have created:
White Paper: SysTrack Delivery Optimization and Planning for NVIDIA GRID and Citrix HDX

 

uberagent

UberAgent 1.8 for Splunk adds GPU performance monitoring

Helge Klein have developed a new version of Splunk that now supports monitoring of GPU, this was a feature request I talked with Helge Klein about in 2013, and I am so happy to see the results what he have done with UberAgent for Splunk, lets dig in what it can do.

uberAgent measures:

  • GPU compute usage per machine
  • GPU memory usage per machine
  • GPU compute usage per process
  • GPU memory usage per process
  • uberAgent shows memory usage separately for shared and dedicated memory (dedicated = on the GPU, shared = main system RAM)
  • uberAgent shows compute usage per GPU engine. The various GPU engines serve different functions, e.g. 2D acceleration, 3D acceleration, video decoding, etc.

uberAgent - process GPU usage uberAgent - single machine GPU usage over time uberAgent - single process GPU usage over time uberAgent - machine GPU usage

For more information visit uberAgent’s website.

My 5 cents

I am very excited to share my findings of some of the things I do in poppelgaard professional services. Feel welcome to contact me at thomas@poppelgaard.com if you are interested in using my professional services and you need help with GPU solutions.

You will see more upcoming blogs from me covering this topic. End User experience, assessments of GPU workload, scaling/sizing, benchmarking, hardware supported, GPU side by side experience, Hypervisor vs Bare metal with a GPU. Watch out for cool things….

Source

Watch the webinar here (YouTube)
Download the presentation here (PDF format)

Lakeside Software
LoginVSI
White Paper: 
SysTrack Delivery Optimization and Planning for NVIDIA GRID and Citrix HDX
UberAgent for Splunk

Citrix XenDesktop HDX3D Pro
Citrix XenApp with GPU Sharing
Citrix XenServer vGPU
NVIDIA GRID
AMD FirePro
VMware vSphere vDGA
VMware vSphere vSGA with NVIDIA GRID

 

Free Webinar “GPU in virtualization, learn why it’s important 11th February 2014

Hi all

I am next week doing a free live Webinar with fellow CTP, Trond Eirik Håvarstein from XenAppBlog.com, 11th February 2014. (time 14:00 EST (GMT-5))

xenappblog ervik                  poppelgaard_com   Thomas Poppelgaard

This is my favorite topic and I am travel to different parts of the World taking about this subject both at Citrix, NVIDIA GTC, Citrix User Groups, VMware User Groups, other Partner Events, now this is your chance to see my webinar free and live at XenAppBlog.

FYI – there is limited seats so hurry up and sign on here https://xenapptraining.leadpages.net/gpu-in-virtualization-learn-why-its-important/

My topic is “GPU in virtualization, learn why it’s important”

  • Evolution of Virtualized Graphics (Citrix vs VMware)
  • Business drivers for virtualizing applications that requires GPU
  • User Experience – VDI with a GPU vs Shared Desktop with a GPU
  • NVIDIA GRID vGPU, Buzz, How to use it, Sizing, Limitations – Q&A

Source

Join the Free Webinar here *Limited Seats

VMware officially supports vDGA (GPU Pass-through) in vSphere/View

At VMworld in Barcelona, October 15th 2013, Vmware officially now support vDGA in vSphere 5.5. vDGA is a graphics acceleration capability that is offered by VMware with NVIDIA GPUs and is enabled by Horizon View 5.3 for delivering high-end Workstation Class 3D Graphics for use cases where a discrete GPU is needed.

The vDGA graphics adapters are installed in the underlying vSphere host and are then assigned to virtual desktops using VMware DirectPath I/O. Assigning a discrete NVIDIA GPU to the virtual Machine dedicates the entire GPU to that desktop and enables for CUDA and OpenCL compute.

With vDGA officially supported you can also used with Citrix XenDesktop or other technologies that requires a dedicated GPU in a Virtual Machine.

Bellow graphics shows how you now with either Vmware or Citrix can build a virtual desktop with GPU pass-through on either vSphere with View or vSphere with XenDesktop or XenServer with XenDesktop as a technology stack.

virtualization_of_GPU_vmware-citrix

GPU pass-through is now fully supported on View 5.3 and Citrix also have support for this in XenDesktop. Summary it means both Vmware and Citrix are now fully supported with GPU Passthrough with NVIDIA certification program, see below.

citrix_and_vmware_gpu_pass-through2

Source

NVIDIA

Login VSI 4.0

This is one of my favorite tools for benchmarking.

Login VSI have released a new version of their famous industrial benchmark tool Login VSI 4.0, a major new release of its flagship product Login VSI, the industry standard performance and scalability testing tool for Virtual Desktop Infrastructures and Server Based Computing environments.

VDI and SBC performance testing now easier and more realistic than ever with Login VSI 4.0

New Login VSI 4.0 dramatically improves ease of installation, test creation and test management, and offers unparalleled production level realism in workload patterns, datasets and test execution.

The design of this new version has been driven by extensive customer feedback programs, and production testing projects executed at multiple customer and vendor sites, including the tests done for the acclaimed independent research project Virtual Reality Check. Login VSI 4.0 makes testing of VDI and SBC environments easier and more realistic than ever before.

Improved ease of installation

The test image footprint of Login VSI has been reduced by almost 90%. This makes the tool not only easier to install, but also easier to integrate and deploy. Centralization of management, updates and logging makes the use of Login VSI more efficient than ever. Direct Desktop Launch (DDL) mode enables large-scale testing with minimal infrastructure.

Improved ease of test creation

The new intuitive and workflow oriented user interface of Login VSI 4.0 offers step-by-step test creation and wizard based test configuration for all important brokers and languages. The new workload editor introduces a new meta language which makes the customization of workloads very transparent and efficient. The new benchmarking mode enforces strict testing standards, providing industry standard results that are objective, comparable and repeatable.

01-login-vsi-40-management-console-home

Improved test realism

The duration of the standard workloads has been increased from 14 to 48 minutes loops. Also the way in which segments and applications start has been improved to better reflect real world user behaviour. The datasets used in the workloads now offer 1000 different documents per type, more and larger websites, and a video library in every format, all to ensure a real world variety in data usage. The execution of the workloads is improved through the introduction of phasing, allowing for real world production user scenarios.

11-login-vsi-40-workloads

Improved test insight

The new dashboard offers real-time test feedback, including progress, launched and active sessions, elapsed time and time left of the test in progress. The industry standard index VSImax has been further refined, enriching scalability results (max number of users), with objective baseline performance results (independent of tested load). Automated reporting with out of the box report ready graphs for all used settings, response times, and other data enhances the level, and choice, of information generated by the Login VSI analyzer.

12-login-vsi-40-analyzer-vsimax

 

17-login-vsi-40-analyzer-compare-wizard

“Login VSI is the industry standard for SBC and VDI testing and benchmarking, as is well demonstrated by the large number of technical papers that are available based on results from our benchmarking suite” says Eric-Jan van Leeuwen, CEO of Login VSI B.V. “The ease of use, and improved realism, of this new version of Login VSI will enable both vendor and end-user organizations to build and protect well performing virtual desktop environments”.

Login VSI 4.0 Pro is now available for all customers on active support and maintenance. Version 4.0 of the free Login VSI Express can be downloaded at www.loginvsi.com/download. More information about Login VSI and related services can be found at www.loginvsi.com.

About Login VSI

Login Virtual Session Indexer (Login VSI) is a vendor independent benchmarking tool to objectively test and measure the performance and scalability of Virtual Desktop Infrastructures and Server Based Computing environments by simulating unique user workloads. Leading IT-analysts recognize and recommend Login VSI as the de-facto industry standard benchmarking tool for VDI and SBC. Login VSI can be used to test VMware Horizon View, Citrix XenDesktop and XenApp, Microsoft Remote Desktop Services or any other Windows based hosted desktop solution. Login VSI is the standard tool used in all tests that are executed in the internationally acclaimed Project Virtual Reality Check. For more information visit www.loginvsi.com.

Source

Read more about LoginVSI here

VDI Smackdown v 2.0 available

Ruben Spruijt (CTP, MVP, vExpert) have updated the awesome whitepaper “VDI Smackdown” to version 2.0. I highly recommend to read this whitepaper if you have VDI or are looking at getting VDI. This is a great comparison.

About VDI Smackdown v.2.0 whitepaper

The latest solutions included in the feature matrix are: Citrix XenDesktop 5.6FP1, Citrix VDI-in-a-Box 5.2, Dell vWorkspace 7.6, Microsoft RDVH Windows8/Server 2012 and VMware View 5.2; The English whitepaper can be downloaded here. The Japanese version will be available as soon as possible.

Empowering the end-user by giving access to Windows, Web and Mobile applications so he can access data and information systems from both private and public datacenters regardless of the device or location is the ultimate strategic objective.
The delivery of the classic (Windows) desktop interface can be divided in two segments:

  • the classic desktop and laptop, running Windows, Linux or Mac OS X;
  • the virtual desktop running in the datacenter or local on the classic workstation.

In essence “desktop virtualization” is the de-coupling of the desktop, operating system and the applications from the underlying endpoint or device. This kind of virtualization can be subdivided into two types:

  • With the first type applications are executed remotely, server hosted, and presented at the endpoint via a remote display protocol.
  • With the second type applications are executed at the endpoint, client-side and presented locally.

Making Windows, Web and Mobile applications available to the end-user, regardless of the technology being used, is an important strategic objective of an advanced IT infrastructure. The Virtual Desktop (vDesktop) is an essential component in the range of Application and Desktop delivery solutions and in essence, it provides the following functions:

  • Flexibility: Detach the vDesktop from the endpoint; Several vDesktops can be used next to one another
  • BYO: enables delivery of applications and desktops for BYO scenario’s;
  • Access: vDesktop works independently of location, endpoint and network;
  • Security: Server Hosted – VDI; data in the computing center;
  • Freedom: Every user can have his own desktop with administrator privileges when needed;
  • Management: Centrally managed and hardware independent;
  • Legacy: It is simple to offer legacy applications on a state-of-the-art platform;
  • Sustainability: Power Management, handling the necessary resources in an efficient manner

The transition to a dynamic and optimized desktop is causing many IT organizations to reevaluate traditional IT operations, deployment, delivery, packaging, support, and management methods.
Desktop virtualization is a key component in the optimized desktop. It’s important to have a Vision and Strategy around application and desktop delivery and enterprise mobility. Designing, building, managing and maintaining the desktop virtualization infrastructure using the right Technologies, corresponding vendors and products is an important step. We see a lot organizations primarily focusing on products and vendors and lacking a clear and profound vision and strategy. This approach is fine for a point solutions but a proper vision and strategy is crucial for a vNext optimized desktop. How can the vision and strategy be successful? Success = Vision x Execution x Adoption!

The following discussions and corresponding topics should be part of the optimized desktop strategy:

  • What are the use-cases? Does the use-case require Desktop Virtualization?
  • VD-why, what do you want to achieve, a business enabler, overall cost of ownership (TCO) and cost reducer?
  • What is the business-case? What do you expect as a ROI?
  • How do you deliver applications to users in a Bring Your Own (BYO) or Choose Your Own (CYO) scenario?
  • What’s your desktop delivery and migration strategy for Windows 7/Windows 8?
  • What’s the user experience using Multimedia, Video/Voice, 2D/3D applications?
  • Is Unified Communications and VoIP functionality within VDI needed? Is it supported by the VDI and UC-vendor?
  • What are the user expectations of the vDesktop? Are users involved in a proof of concept and pilot? What are their acceptation criteria?
  • What endpoints do we support and facilitate and what is the role of these devices in the end-user experience? Are the endpoints managed by the IT organization?
  • Do you want to deliver windows and web applications to mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones via VDI? What does the user wants? What is your enterprise mobility strategy?
  • What is the impact of Secure Access and Secure Networking solutions on mobile devices while connecting to the vDesktop? What is the user experience with these secure access solutions?
  • Is there a supported agent for the OS/endpoint? What is the User Experience with this agent? What is the feature and future roadmap of these agents? Is agentless via HTML(5) included and important?
  • Is image deployment and management part of the (virtual) Desktop Strategy?
  • How do you design and build the user’s profile and his ‘workspace’? Does Application virtualizationfit into this strategy? The ‘User Environment Management’ Smackdown can be helpful.
  • Do we need a vMachine based image management solution? How do we design, build and maintain the (golden) Image(s)?
  • Do you need context awareness? Based on user/role, device, location and various settings is access to application resources controlled and enforced when needed?
  • What is your application readiness assessment strategy? Are Windows 7, Windows 8, VDI, application virtualization and x64 included?
  • How are Windows applications delivered within the vDesktop? Unattended or manual installation, application virtualization or the applications are part of the (golden) image? What is the strategy?
  • Does the end-user needs the ability to install and update applications? Is User Installed Applicationsfunctionality needed? Does the user have the correct privileges to install or update software?
  • Do you need local or centralized storage? What storage optimization (IOPS/latency) technology is being used?
  • What is the VDI impact on storage and how does it affect the business case?
  • Do we focus on stateless (non-persistent) and/or stateful (hybrid/persistent) images? What is, for example, the impact on storage, manageability, security, legal and business-case?
  • Windows 8 or Windows 7 as core guest OS platform? x64 or x86?
  • How does the solution scale? What do we need from a scalability point of view? Is there a validated design?
  • What is the performance and bandwidth impact on the network infrastructure; LAN, WAN, WLAN, Mobile;
  • Licensing; VDI solution, guest and client operating system, Client Access Licenses and (Business) Applications.
  • Is Antivirus needed? Inside the VM or as layer on the Hypervisor? What is the real performance impactof Antivirus?
  • Is the VDI solution as a whole highly available? Is that built-in or are additional planning and solutions needed to get high availability? Is a highly available vDesktop needed?
  • Is the IT department able to adopt the technology with right knowledge and skills? What subject matter experts are needed to get and keep the VDI solution up and running in production environment? Is this expertise available? Who has overview of the complete VDI solution stack?
  • How does the desktop virtualization solution fit into existing deployment and management tools?

Bottom Line: What’s your current Enterprise Mobility and Desktop Delivery strategy?! 

Get a head start! Download our complete, in-depth, and independent whitepaper. We try to provide accurate, clear, complete and usable information. We appreciate your feedback. If you have any comments, corrections or suggestions for improvements of this document we want to hear from you! Feedback!? rsp@pqr.nl or twitter

Source

Article at BrianMadden.com

Download VDI Smackdown v.2.0 here