In Chris Brown‘s Virtualization and ASE blog post, he brings up the question of whether Sybase’s ASE can be used in a virtual environment (VMWare, Xen, etc) but doesn’t answer it. I’ve been using various databases in virtual environments for several years, here is what I found out:
- development of new applications – each developer group can have its own “db server” on the same machine
- testing new ebfs/releases with your applications
- reproducing problems either in the sybase software or in the application code – a ‘virgin’ instance that can be duplicated at will
- trying out new operating systems (moving from Windows to Linux or Windows to Solaris x86?) without investing in new hardware
The main caveat is that the performance stinks – databases typically require high disk i/o, memory i/o and cpu responsiveness. The virtualization software currently available, even with hardware help (newer Intel,AMD chips), are not up to the task of running a *production* database. In a couple years… possibly.