Category Archives: VMworld Europe 2017

Vendor Brief: Turbonomic

I’ve blogged about Turbonomic before– when they evolved from VMTurbo in 2016 and at VMworld 2017 in Barcelona I had a sit down with Perry and Giampiero from the company to see where the product was at 12 months on.

This is a single product company- “Turbonomic” is both the company name and the product name. The product “enables workload self-management” – in a nutshell monitors the environment to ensure that whenever possible applications are given the resources they require. Consider this at its core to be “DRS on steroids”- I was told they can get a density of 30% more VMs per host compared to normal VMware DRS.

turbonomic logo

The thinking behind the resource allocation by Turbonomic is very focussed on a desired state, rather than looking out for something broken they look at the situation from another perspective by defining what a good state looks like and then worrying about how to get there. To get to this good state the software will take into account placement (host, datastore etc), scaling (looking for oversized VMs as well as undersized), and the capacity of resources available.

The Turbonomic software tries to look at the big picture of the estate- for example “will migrating a hot virtual machine using high CPU onto a new host have a knock on effect on the memory available to other VMs already present on that host?”. The aim, as with any resource scheduler, is to make the best use of the resources available and when an application has a requirement for certain resources it will find the best location and (in Turbonomic’s case) size for that VM.

One example application of this resizing process that was suggested is the deployment of new VMs. Rather than deploying T-shirt sized VMs a company could just deploy “Small” and then Turbonomic could automatically scale those VMs up (or down) through their lifecycle to ensure that the application had the resources it required (subject to availability). In my opinion this sounds like an improvement over the normal “T-shirt” model as it allows more flexibility for applications which need more memory, or more CPU, but perhaps not both. If VMs are sized according to their current requirements, rather than their original template this must surely reduce wastage and therefore potentially save money.


Similar to the affinity rules in DRS, Turbonomic also allows multi-tier apps to be grouped together in units they call “vPods”. For example if an application has a web server and database server and you’d like them to stay together to keep any network traffic in-host. On the subject of DRS, existing policies from vCenter can be imported into the software.

Public clouds are obviously an important tool when manipulating workloads that can scale on demand, and unsurprisingly Turbonomic has integrations here. As well as being able to negotiate with your on-premises environment, the software can talk to the major cloud providers. This provides additional benefits as an oversized VM in the cloud can have big financial implications and the ability to automatically downsize is possibly more important here than in an on-premises environment. Also in the modern multi-cloud world Turbonomic can monitor cloud pricing across vendors along with real-time workload usage and suggest moving services to a different provider, including a real pound/dollar/euro/etc figure of how much a migration could save.

In summary, Turbonomic is worth a look if you’re looking to implement a new monitoring solution and want some automation around it, or if you are looking to reduce your outlay on servers in your own datacentre or your monthly bill from the public cloud.

Beginners Guide to….. Turbonomic

What does it do?

Monitors your environment and moves and scales workloads to give them the resources they need wherever possible.

What do I need to buy?

Turbonomic is a virtual appliance with licensing based on the physical core count or virtual machine count. There is a free 30-day trial.

How do I use it?

Deploy the OVA to your environment and point it at vCenter (and any cloud providers). Management of the product is via a web interface.

Where can I find out more?

Please read my standard Declaration/Disclaimer and before rushing out to buy anything bear in mind that this article is based on a sales discussion at a trade show rather than a POC or production installation. I wasn’t paid to write this article or offered any payment, although I did pick up a branded drink bottle.


Vendor Brief: Rubrik

clip_image001Rubrik have become the new “cool kid” of backups and in the past couple of years I’ve seen lots of enthusiasm in the community for the product. To reinforce this their stand at the Barcelona show featured a Mercedes Formula 1 car, their marketing giveaways include custom LEGO figures based on Mr Men books (you can’t not be cool with that combination), and they topped it all when they gave away 1000 copies of the Host Resources Deep Dive book by Niels Hagoort and Frank Denneman to attendees. Aside from the swag Rubrik have made impressive steps in the Gartner Magic Quadrant and received awards at VMworld US last month. Continue reading

VMworld 2017 Europe Tuesday Keynote

Even when VMworld US had been weeks in advance of the European event there had been a lot in common between the keynotes so with the two legs being just days apart this year more similarity was inevitable. My write-ups of the VMworld 2017 US keynotes can be found elsewhere on this blog, so I’ll be trying to avoid too much duplication.

Jean-Pierre Brulard kicked off the proceedings touching on the tragic events that occurred in Barcelona only weeks ago before welcoming the eleven thousand visitors to VMworld who had travelled from 95 countries across the globe.

Continue reading

VMworld 2017 Europe Monday

clip_image001Yesterday the VMworld faithful started arriving at El-Prat Airport in Barcelona, heading to registration at the Fira Gran Via, and checking into their hotels in the city. To get the event started the annual vRockstar gathering offered the chance to renew old friendships and make some new ones. This year vRockstar found a new home by the marina at the “Soho House” club. Thanks again to the organisers Patrick Redknap and Marco Broeken and the numerous sponsors they managed to persuade to dip into their pockets.

Monday morning, bright and early it was time to go back to the Fira and have the Monday morning explore. Monday is primarily Partner/TAM day but there are a number of sessions open to all attendees, plus the Hands-On Labs, Education Lounge, and VMTN Community area are all up and running in the VMVillage. Continue reading