Have You Virtualized Your Oracle Databases Yet?

by bluemedora_editor on May 1, 2017

By: Kyle Wassink


Virtualizing Oracle Databases continues to become more common, and with it comes the challenges of understanding new virtualized resource dependencies. Which virtual machine do your Oracle Databases run on? Which VMware host does that VM run on? What virtual machines do you compete with for critical CPU cycles and memory resources?

These questions only scratch the surface of identifying new complexities involved with virtualizing Oracle. How do I know if there is resource contention that could impact my virtual machine, and thus my database? Am I guaranteed a certain amount of CPU time or memory?

If you are using Oracle Enterprise Manager to monitor your Oracle Databases, which are being virtualized with VMware, the Oracle Enterprise Manager Plugin for VMware serves as a solution to help you answer these questions and understand key performance indicators.

In this blog post, I’ll cover how you can get the answers you need from the Oracle Enterprise Manager Plugin for VMware.


How do I tell which virtual machine my database runs on? And the VMware host?

The first step to understand performance and configuration dependencies at the VMware layer comes from knowing the appropriate virtual machine and host to review. With the Oracle Enterprise Manager Plugin for VMware, you can easily find this information.

The virtual machine target page shows the relationship between the Oracle Database, the virtual machine and VMware host. In addition, you can see important performance indicators for more visibility.

Virtual Machine target page in the Plugin for VMware | Blue Medora

Figure 1: The VMware Host (Hypervisor), VMware Virtual Machine and Oracle Databases are shown together in the Virtual Machine target page. Clicking on the hypervisor or database name will bring you to the respective target pages.


You can also view the relationship between the Oracle Database and the VMware dependencies from the Topology view. Starting at an Oracle Database target page, click Oracle Databases > Configuration > Topology. You will see a screen similar to below, which shows the Oracle Database as well as the VMware host, VM and datastore it relies on.

Figure 2: The Oracle Database at the top, plus the underlying virtual machine (bottom), Hypervisor (fourth from top) and datastore (third from top).


What virtual machines am I competing against for resources?

Navigating to the VMware host target, then to the virtual machines subpage will show you all the promoted virtual machines running on a given host. From here, you can sort the columns by resource utilization so you can quickly and easily identify resource hogs.

Figure 3: From the Hypervisor (VMware Host) target, you can see all the virtual machines competing for CPU and memory.


Is my virtual machine experiencing resource contention?

When looking for resource contention, the virtual machine your Oracle Database resides on is the place to start. Some key metrics to monitor are CPU Percent Ready and Ballooned Memory. CPU Percent Ready can be viewed front and center in the virtual machine target page.

Figure 4: In this case, the virtual machine has 0% CPU Percent Ready, meaning there is not a CPU shortage.


Ballooned Memory, as well as other key performance metric history, is available in the Virtual Machine > Performance subpage.

Figure 5: Historical KPIs around CPU Percent Ready, Ballooned Memory, Consumed CPU and Memory are available from the Virtual Machine page.


Am I guaranteed certain resources?

CPU and memory guarantees, or the opposite, limits, are critical to understanding how your Oracle Database receives resources and priority. In the Virtual Machine subpage on configuration, you can view this information:

Figure 6: Memory and CPU capacity, reservations and limit configurations are available as well. As a result, you can ensure your virtual machine and Oracle Database have the necessary resources.


Simplify your database virtualization today

The Oracle Enterprise Manager Plugin for VMware can help your transition to virtualized databases or simplify your monitoring and management of already-virtualized Oracle Databases. You can get more information, including a free trial, on the product page or review some of the key features in our datasheet.

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