Monday Jun 20, 2016

SPARC Solaris Virtualization ROCKS for SAS Analytics

A global life sciences company recently undertook a complete infrastructure refresh of its SAS Analytics environment to meet critical business requirements, such as industry compliance, scale for growth and resiliency for non-stop operations . This case study documents the strategic choices and the procedural details involved in modernizing their SAS Analytics environment and demonstrates how SPARC Solaris virtualization ROCKS! (see white paper below).

The Challenge:

This company was looking to replace an aged 16-core HPUX Itanium system with performance issues that was currently running SAS to support 150 users.  Their goal was to move to a SAS Grid Computing framework that could support 400 users in a high availability (HA) and disaster recovery architecture for non-stop operation.  In addition, they required high-performance shared file system storage and needed to consolidate three separate SAS releases (9.2; 9.3; and 9.4).  All this while needing to map SAS services to 15+ separate OS instances.


The SPARC Solaris Virtualization Solution:

Combining Oracle’s Solaris 11 OS with SPARC servers and ZFS Storage created a very flexible and powerful virtualization solution for this complex challenge with Oracle VM Server for SPARC (LDoms) and Oracle Solaris Zones. The SPARC Solaris virtualization strategy enabled strict compliance to SAS licensing policy while allowing for prioritized resource allocations for memory, I/O, and network bandwidth – all without adding additional licensing and virtualization costs to the customer.

Leveraging the flexibility of Oracle Solaris virtualization technologies to achieve both business and IT infrastructure needs enabled this pharmaceutical company to transform and optimize their SAS Analytics environment.

The Devil is in The Details:



Read this white paper for best practices, lessons learned, and the detailed deployment anatomy to understand the specifics of this case study.  It also includes the actual scripting of the virtualization services which were created:

White Paper: Modernization of a SAS® Analytics Environment -
Solving Complicated Refresh Challenges with Oracle Solaris and SPARC Virtualization Technologies


Should you have any questions on this case study, you can contact us at isvsupport_ww@oracle.com.

Monday Apr 07, 2014

Solaris/SPARC Tip for April: Making Existing Software Licenses Work

Many ISVs license their software based on the number of CPU cores. In many instances, these licenses allow a particular instance of the software to be moved between systems as needed. In this age of massively-multicore CPUs, some customers find themselves unable to move said software to newer systems with larger core counts. "We have a license for at most 8 CPU cores, but are moving to a SPARC T4-4." What to do? 

Customers can, of course, make use of one or more of Oracle virtualization technologies, to create Solaris environments with the requisite CPU cores, but that is sometimes not possible or practical for some IT shops.

There is, however, a relatively simple solution, which makes use of Oracle VM for SPARC (aka LDom) software to disable CPU resources in the existing operating environment:

a) [Solaris 10] Download and install Oracle VM for SPARC (latest version is 3.1)

b) Limit the CPU resources of your system (no Guest LDoms needed, just restrict the current system (the Primary LDom)

No virtualized resource management needed. Just set it and forget it (or change it later).

The following checklist table details the required steps to implement this scheme on Solaris 10 and Solaris 11, using Oracle VM for SPARC 3.1, and assuming the software in question is licensed for 8 cores:

1) (Solaris 10) Download OVM for SPARC 3.1 (instructions here)

2) (Solaris 10) Install OVM for SPARC 3.1 (instructions here)

3) Enable OVM for SPARC: 
# svcadm enable ldmd

4) Set CPU resources current system:
# ldm list -o core
NAME             
primary

CORE
    CID    CPUSET

    0      (0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7)
    1      (8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15)
    2      (16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23)
    3      (24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31)
    4      (32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39)
    5      (40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47)
    6      (48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55)
    7      (56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63)
    8      (64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71)
    9      (72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79)
    10      (80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87)
    11      (88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95)
    12      (96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103)
    13      (104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109, 110, 111)
    14      (112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119)
    15      (120, 121, 122, 123, 124, 125, 126, 127)
    16      (128, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133, 134, 135)
    17      (136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 142, 143)
    18      (144, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151)
    19      (152, 153, 154, 155, 156, 157, 158, 159)
    20      (160, 161, 162, 163, 164, 165, 166, 167)
    21      (168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175)
    22      (176, 177, 178, 179, 180, 181, 182, 183)
    23      (184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 191)
    24      (192, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199)
    25      (200, 201, 202, 203, 204, 205, 206, 207)
    26      (208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 215)
    27      (216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 223)
    28      (224, 225, 226, 227, 228, 229, 230, 231)
    29      (232, 233, 234, 235, 236, 237, 238, 239)
    30      (240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247)
    31      (248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255)

# ldm set-core 8 primary
# ldm list -o core
NAME             
primary

CORE
    CID    CPUSET

    0      (0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7)
    1      (8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15)
    2      (16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23)
    3      (24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31)
    4      (32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39)
    5      (40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47)
    6      (48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55)
    7      (56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63)
    8      (64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71)

It's just that easy!

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