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AMD and VMware make it easy to Migrate Legacy Architecture and Help Lower IT Costs

Chuck_Gilbert
0 0 2,401

If you have a sneaking suspicion that your IT department’s budget is starting to go overboard, you might be right.

While there’s always a price tag on doing business, there can also be a steep cost to doing nothing. Maintaining legacy architecture can sometimes feel like walking the plank budget-wise. It’s just a matter of time before the entire ship has to be abandoned, because there is no new navigation system in place.

Consider that the average data center server is between 3–5 years old. Maintaining legacy systems and aging infrastructure can expose unaddressed enterprise security vulnerabilities, and complete replacement and its attendant costs can be a major disruptor to business operations. Don’t be surprised if your diligent—but risk-averse—IT management tells you that migrating virtual machines (VMs) across different architectures is a daunting task, especially if CPU architectures are not the same across the enterprise.

Tell your IT management that their fears are largely unfounded, and that proactive planning can bring good fortune. Migrating VMs from legacy Intel® architecture to AMD EPYC™ processors can be a smooth process. AMD and VMware® developed an automated tool to help migrate VMs currently on Intel architecture to AMD architecture to help deliver a better user experience (UX) and better business value for your bottom line. To counter the naysayers, AMD commissioned third-party testing to show that cold migration with this tool can indeed be a painless, glitch-free experience. Through in-depth testing by Prowess Consulting, engineers successfully cold-migrated 40 VMs from Intel architecture to AMD hardware in less than 30 minutes.1,

Understandably, IT organizations can also hesitate to migrate VMs because doing so is often considered risky to the business when it requires shutting down VMs to perform a cold migration. This is a valuable consideration—but IT admins should already know that cold migration doesn’t need to mean the applications go down. Most IT organizations have high-availability application environments with load balancers that are built for redundancy that allow applications to remain available when performing routine maintenance and critical patches. This is an established workflow that IT professionals have used for years, and can be used to migrate VMs without needing to take down applications (i.e. without disrupting the business.)

Along with short migration times, moving to AMD means you can enjoy exceptional performance with outstanding energy efficiency, which can translate to lower power bills and reduced energy consumption. As a family, EPYC processors power the most energy efficient servers available today3.  AMD is delivering an easy, automated process to live migrate VMs between clusters of different architecture types within the same VMware vCenter implementation.

AMD has worked with vendors to optimize at the operating system (OS) level, so right out of the box you’ll get great performance (although certain organizational apps might benefit from some level of optimization). Encourage your IT management to partake in the business benefits of streamlining the server environment.

And in case it’s not crystal clear, the most valuable outcome of this tool is budget savings. Deploying AMD EPYC based solutions can result in  a lower total cost of ownership (TCO) over a three-year period. For instance, to deliver 10,000 units of integer performance, A 2P EPYC 9654 powered solution would have an estimated 54% lower TCO than a 2P Xeon 8490H based solution.2 Less time to migrate, less power and cooling costs, and a friction-free experience can not only help lower operating expenses but can also enable your IT staff to devote more efforts to daily business operations.

 

 

1 Prowess Consulting. “Can You Easily Migrate VMs from Intel® Hardware to AMD Hardware?” https://www.prowesscorp.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/12/220120-migration-testing-from-intel-to-amd-ha...

2 This scenario contains many assumptions and estimates and, while based on AMD internal research and best approximations, should be considered an example for information purposes only, and not used as a basis for decision making over actual testing. The Bare Metal Server Greenhouse Gas Emissions TCO (total cost of ownership) Estimator Tool - version 6.80, compares the selected AMD EPYC™ and Intel® Xeon® CPU based server solutions required to deliver a TOTAL_PERFORMANCE of 10,000 units of integer performance based on the published scores for these specific Intel Xeon and AMD EPYC CPU based servers as of January 10, 2023.  This estimation reflects a 3-year time frame with a PUE of 1.7 and a power US power cost of $0.16 / kWh.  This analysis compares a 2P AMD 96 core AMD EPYC_9654 powered server with a SPECrate2017_int_base score of 1790, https://spec.org/cpu2017/results/res2022q4/cpu2017-20221024-32607.pdf; to a 2P Intel Xeon 60 core Platinum_8490H based server with a SPECrate2017_int_base score of 991, https://spec.org/cpu2017/results/res2023q1/cpu2017-20221206-33039.pdf. For additional details, see https://www.amd.com/en/claims/epyc4#SP5TCO-032.

3 EPYC-028B: SPECpower_ssj® 2008, SPECrate®2017_int_energy_base, and SPECrate®2017_fp_energy_base based on results published on SPEC’s website as of 11/10/22. VMmark® server power-performance (PPKW) based results published at https://www.vmware.com/products/vmmark/results3x.1.html?sort=score. The first 74 ranked SPECpower_ssj®2008 publications with the highest overall efficiency overall ssj_ops/W results were all powered by AMD EPYC processors. For SPECrate®2017 Integer (Energy Base), AMD EPYC CPUs power the first 4 of 5 SPECrate®2017_int_energy_base performance/system W scores. For SPECrate®2017 Floating Point (Energy Base), AMD EPYC CPUs power the first 8 of 9 SPECrate®2017_fp_energy_base performance/system W scores. For VMmark® server power-performance (PPKW), have the top two results for 2- and 4-socket matched pair results outperforming all other socket results. See https://www.amd.com/en/claims/epyc3x#faq-EPYC-028B for the full list. More information about SPEC® is available at http://www.spec.org. SPEC, SPECrate, and SPECpower are registered trademarks of the Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation. VMmark is a registered trademark of VMware in the US or other countries.