Automatic virtual machine configuration for database workloads

Ahmed A. Soror, Umar Farooq Minhas, Ashraf Aboulnaga, Kenneth Salem, Peter Kokosielis, Sunil Kamath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

45 Citations (Scopus)


Virtual machine monitors are becoming popular tools for the deployment of database management systems and other enterprise software. In this article, we consider a common resource consolidation scenario in which several database management system instances, each running in a separate virtual machine, are sharing a common pool of physical computing resources. We address the problem of optimizing the performance of these database management systems by controlling the configurations of the virtual machines in which they run. These virtual machine configurations determine how the shared physical resources will be allocated to the different database system instances. We introduce a virtualization design advisor that uses information about the anticipated workloads of each of the database systems to recommend workload-specific configurations offline. Furthermore, runtime information collected after the deployment of the recommended configurations can be used to refine the recommendation and to handle changes in the workload. To estimate the effect of a particular resource allocation on workload performance, we use the query optimizer in a new what-if mode. We have implemented our approach using both PostgreSQL and DB2, and we have experimentally evaluated its effectiveness using DSS and OLTP workloads.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7
JournalACM Transactions on Database Systems
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2010



  • Virtual machine configuration
  • Virtualization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems

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