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Are VMs right for my application, is so which ones should I be looking at? RRS feed

  • Question

  • I am doing some analysis that requires windows software on a windows based server owned by a colleague. The analysis is slow, partly because the machine does not have an SSD and we might not have the option to upgrade that machine.

    The machine we have right now is running windows server 2012 r2 and has:

    320 GB RAM

    2 CPUs (56 logical processors)

    and about 3.5 TB of HD storage

    I am looking for something that is similar but has SSD and maybe some more cores.

    I browsed the pricing page:

    (https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/pricing/details/virtual-machines/windows/)

    I came across:

    E64as v3

    Which seems like a good fit with:

    64 cores

    432 GB memory

    864 GB temporary disk space

    I guessing I would have to upgrade to one of the SSDs priced here:

    (https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/pricing/details/managed-disks/)

    to meet a similar storage capacity (like a P50)

    Does a VM even seem logical for what I am trying to achieve? If so am I thinking along the right lines in terms of specs?





    Tuesday, October 22, 2019 10:10 PM

All replies

  • It's really up to you if you think you want to move to the cloud. That being said, there are obvious advantages such as not having to buy the individual compute resources. 

    I would suggest you start with this doc: 

    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/sizes

    It will allow you to better browse the sizes available then you can use the pricing calculator to determine the monthly cost. 

    Since you require a large amount of RAM, the E series would be a great choice. So from my perspective you are on the right path. 

    We have a few other high memory sizes as well

    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/sizes-memory

    Each of the sizes will also tell you if they support premium storage

    

    Another good think about moving to the cloud is you can easily change the size of the VM. So for example, you could deploy a VM that has slightly less resources than your current setup. This could help save some money. Then, if you found you needed more resources, you can easily choose a different VM size and we will move your application and everything attached to the VM to a new node that has the additional resources. 

    Once you determine a VM size, you can then attach any data disks you want and get the required specs you desire. As you found we have a few different storage options but getting 3.5TB of SSD in Azure is very simple. 

    Let me know if I can answer anything else to provide additional suggestions on other areas. 

    Tuesday, October 22, 2019 10:36 PM
    Moderator
  • If we purchase a vm, we would have an option to set up a windows server 2012 r2 image correct? Its a gui program so we would like to use remote desktop to connect and run our software.

    We are also wondering about the cost to transfer raw data to the server and processed data off the server. From what I have seen online, but it looks like a few cents/GB according to this: https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/pricing/details/bandwidth/

    Additionally, I am wondering about whether the persistent storage is only purchasable by the month.

    And finally, for the E2-64 v3, when they say 64 vCPU, that is actually a 2:1 vCPU to physical core ratio on a 2.3 GHz Intel XEON E5-2673 v4?

    Is this correct?

    Thank you!






    • Edited by analyst_aa Wednesday, October 23, 2019 12:16 PM
    Wednesday, October 23, 2019 10:52 AM
  • Yes Server 2012 R2 is available. 

    https://azuremarketplace.microsoft.com/en-us/marketplace/apps/microsoftwindowsserver.windowsserver?tab=Overview

    We have a few options for uploading Data to Azure. If you have large amounts of data, look into the Import/ Export Services

    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/common/storage-import-export-service

    Otherwise, you can upload directly by copying the data from on prem to Azure or uploading a VHD. In which case you would pay for the transaction costs. The pricing calculator your found would be the right choice to see how much it would cost to move all the data. 

    I am not sure what you mean by persistent storage purchasable my month though. Depending on the size of the disk and the tier the costs varies. You can also see this on the pricing calculator. We explain it in a month to month price but if you said had a 1TB disk for 2 weeks instead of a month you would only pay for the time you had that disk. We wouldn't charge you for the whole month. Does that make sense? 

    As per the vCPU ratio, you can find all ratios here: 

    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/acu

    In which the E series is 2:1

    Wednesday, October 23, 2019 6:01 PM
    Moderator
  • This is helped immensely. How long does it usually take to set up the windows VM to the point where it is accessible by remote desktop and we can start transferring data over? I am mostly looking at this guide:

    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/quick-create-portal

    I have a little bit of VM setup experience on digital ocean and that was usually pretty fast (like a few minutes).

    Thursday, October 24, 2019 1:21 PM
  • It only takes a few minutes to setup a VM and access it via RDP. If you are provisioning a large VM it might take up to 10 mins but all in all, not long. 

    I would suggest you setup a small VM and play around with it a bit. That way you get used to how to set up the networking, security groups, internal and external access, etc. 

    Then when you are ready plan and create the production VM and start migrating data. 

    Thursday, October 24, 2019 4:44 PM
    Moderator
  • Hello,

    Any update on the issue?

    Just checking in if you got a chance to see previous reply from Micah and give the suggestion a try.

    If the suggested response helped you resolve your issue, do click on "Mark as Answer" and "Up-Vote" for the answer that helped you for benefit of the community.

    Thanks.

    Tuesday, October 29, 2019 11:46 AM
    Moderator
  • Is there a sandbox environment or some sort of free account that I could use to practice provisioning a vm and setting up the networking, security groups, internal and external access?
    Friday, November 1, 2019 8:22 PM
  • Sure! We have this: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sandbox/

    Or you can create a free Azure account and you get a $200 credit to play with

    https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/free/

    Friday, November 1, 2019 8:46 PM
    Moderator
  • Any update on this? 

    If the proposed answer was useful please remember to "Up-vote" and "Mark as Answer" to help the community easily find the solution. 

    Thursday, November 7, 2019 5:24 PM
    Moderator