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VMware Sets Capacity Record Running Microsoft Exchange on IBM System x3850 M2 Servers

VMware Sets Capacity Record Running Microsoft Exchange on IBM System x3850 M2 Servers

Microsoft Exchange Virtualized by VMware More than Doubles Native Capacity of Mailboxes Running on 16-core Physical Servers

CANNES, France, February 26, 2008 — VMware, Inc. (NYSE: VMW), the global leader in virtualization solutions from the desktop to the datacenter, has set a record in system capacity and resource utilization for running Microsoft Exchange. VMware deployed Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 on VMware Infrastructure 3 (VI3) and successfully supported 16,000 heavy-user* Exchange mailboxes on a single 4-socket multi-core IBM System x3850 M2 server. Running Microsoft Exchange on VMware software increased by more than 100% the number of supportable Exchange users as compared to Microsoft Exchange’s prescribed recommendations for running natively in a non-virtualized environment.** VMware virtualization software enables enterprises to take full advantage of multi-core hardware servers to run the most demanding enterprise applications much more efficiently.

VMware software allows enterprise applications to overcome scalability limitations associated with non-virtualized environments. Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 is one of the most widely-used messaging applications deployed in production datacenters worldwide. Historically, however, the design of operating systems and applications has imposed limits on the number of recommended CPUs and memory per physical server. As a result, under-utilized physical servers have proliferated in today’s datacenters, which are costly to manage, maintain, power, and cool.

By running VMware software on powerful multi-core servers, customers can consolidate larger workloads on fewer physical servers – while at the same time actually improve capacity. As a result, customers reduce the capital expenses of hardware maintenance, and the environmental impact of unnecessary power consumption.  Customers can also benefit from VMware management tools, which enable solutions never possible before virtualization, including moving workloads from one physical server to another without interruption, automating resource scheduling, and ensuring high availability.

VMware benefits are not just being demonstrated in labs, they’re being realized by organizations in production environments using a variety of server platforms. For example, Adrian Jane, Infrastructure & Operations Manager at The University of Plymouth, who is responsible for running approximately 50,000 Microsoft Exchange mailboxes across four virtual machines running VMware Infrastructure 3 on Hewlett-Packard Quad Processor Dual Core AMD C-Class Blade Servers, said, “Our entire Microsoft Exchange deployment is virtualized on VMware Infrastructure 3, and we are extremely pleased with the performance we’ve seen. Furthermore, VMware also provides us with a high availability solution that has advantages over traditional clustering options. When it comes to managing production applications, VMware is a strategy, not just a product.”

At the inaugural VMworld Europe user conference here in Cannes, VMware President and CEO Diane Greene said to a keynote audience of over 4,500, “Today’s results published on our website support what our customers have been telling us from day one – Microsoft applications run best on VMware. Multi-core hardware advancements complement VMware virtualization software, and vice versa.  Customers are able to ‘refresh’ their datacenters with more powerful hardware, and they can continue to reduce their space, power and manageability requirements.” 

Testing Methodology

The demonstration included Microsoft Exchange 2007, running on VMware ESX Server 3.5 on an IBM System x3850 M2 physical server, which features four of the four-core Intel Xeon 7350 processors on the eX4platform. The test followed Microsoft’s guidelines for configuring Exchange (see which recommends 1000 mailboxes per core and a maximum of 32G of memory per operating system instance. Using VMware’s software, the test lab created and ran multiple installations of these “recommended configurations” within virtual machines. Further details of the testing methodology and results can be found here:

For customers and partners interested in learning more about deploying Exchange on VMware please visit:

About VMware

VMware (NYSE: VMW) is the global leader in virtualization solutions from the desktop to the datacenter.  Customers of all sizes rely on VMware to reduce capital and operating expenses, ensure business continuity, strengthen security and go green. With 2007 revenues of $1.3 billion, more than 100,000 customers and more than 10,000 partners, VMware is one of the fastest growing public software companies.  VMware is headquartered in Palo Alto, California and on the web at

* The test utilized a “heavy user” with each mailbox sized to 250MB, and 500GB of exchange data per virtual machine. 

** This data is based on tests conducted by VMware using Microsoft's Exchange 2007 Load Generator (LoadGen) tool and recommended methodology. These tests demonstrate the ability to drive greater CPU and memory capacity by running Exchange 2007 in virtual machines on VMware Infrastructure 3 than on the native system, while still respecting Microsoft's recommended configuration maximums and 1,000 mailboxes per core guidance.

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