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[Xen-API] XCP 1.1 Intellicache issues

  • To: xen-api@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • From: Lars Seeliger <meesterlars@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 14 Oct 2011 11:01:50 +0200
  • Delivery-date: Fri, 14 Oct 2011 02:06:07 -0700
  • List-id: Discussion of API issues surrounding Xen <xen-api.lists.xensource.com>

Hi there,

We've just upgraded to XCP 1.1, and I'm testing Intellicache to see what performance benefits it could possibly bring to our infrastructure. I'm running a Windows 7 VM from an NFS SR, the local storage on the XCP host has caching enabled. So far, so good.

I ran the following command:

xe vdi-param-set uuid=75eaac3e-d2ec-4f45-ac9f-67586f2d703c allow-caching=true on-boot=persist

which enabled caching on the c: of the VM in question. Using dstat on the XCP host, I can see now how when a programme is used data is written to the local SR and pulled from there on next launch. Although the local storage isn't the fastest (I'll be installing an SSD soon), Intellicache clearly makes a difference, as we have a few VMs competing for I/O on that NFS SR. Anyway, I have noticed a couple of oddities; I rebooted the VM now to test boot speed and Windows forced a chkdsk. Many errors are being found. Before the reboot, I noticed my Firefox profile was somehow missing/outdated. Using Previous Versions I managed to restore a working copy.

Once Wiindows is back up and running, I'll bet my outlook .ost file is corrupt. This is exactly the same behaviour I noticed with the unsupported Intellicache in XCP 1.0. I assumed when I tested it back then that the technology was in a testing phase and these sorts of issues would be sorted by the time 1.1 was released. So either there is a problem or I'm doing something wrong (I hope the latter!)

I have a feeling this is related to snapshots; the VM is a member of a VM Protection Policy, which performs a simple disk snapshot nightly at 23:00. But who knows?

So, any clues? I'd appreciate any help working out what's causing this corruption.

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