Aligning VMFS and Linux using fdisk

The alignment procedure for VMFS and Linux is the same as any other Linux file system. Use fdisk’s expert mode to create a new partition with an aligned starting block and then format the file system. You should use this procedure for not only VMFS, but for your Linux virtual machines as well (changing the type in step 7 "fb" to 83.)

Preparing Windows for Disk Alignment

If you are installing Windows Server 2000, 2003 or Windows XP on a physical server or desktop, you cannot fix disk alignment at the time of installation with the Windows media. (This is not a problem with Windows 2008 or Windows 7). Once Windows has been installed, there is no way to fix the alignment, it must be done at the time the partition is created. You won't have the proper tools until after Windows is installed.

The Importance of Disk Alignment

Read of a Cluster may cause multiple SAN reads. - VMWare, Inc.

Disk performance is one of the bottlenecks that can adverse affect the performance computer system. This is true if you are running a physical system a Virtual Machine on datastore. All traditional rotating disks are divided into physical sectors. The operating systems and their components operate according to this sector logic. Since virtualization relies heavily on SAN storage, the alignment of the Virtual Machine's disk with the SAN become important. This is known as disk alignment. Some metrics will state a 9-15% improvement in performance with aligned disks vs.

Optimizing Windows 7 for VDI

It amazes me that we are still talking about how to deploy Windows 7 and that XP is still a mainstream OS, and likely will be until we get closer to 2014 when XP support ends. I find Windows 7 to be one of the best versions of Windows. Almost enough to get me to switch from Linux, almost. That said, I do a lot of VMware View work and my VDI clients ask what changes I make to speed up the VDI desktop.

Optimizing Windows XP for VDI

It is important to optimize the desktop for your VDI environment, this is true if your environment is Citrix XenDesktop or VMWare View. This document will outline some of the key changes that need to be made with your desktop. If this is to be your template give it a meaning full generic name such as "xp-template"
Recommended Configurations:

Virtual Desktops - Graphic Applications and Mouse

I recently came across a unique situation with a remote office as we virtualized the servers and looked to virtualizing the workflows. For this office we deployed Citrix XenDesktop 5.5 and provided a desktop to each user. Each user was provided a persistent desktop. This persistent desktop was created from a master image with installed core applications. Then each user had specific applications installed into their desktop creating a one-to-one desktop to user relationship.

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