Memory flipping: a threat to NUMA virtual machines in the Cloud

Abstract : vNUMA is the most recent technology used by hypervisors to deal with Non Uniform Memory Access (NUMA) machines, which currently composed most datacenters. vNUMA consists in presenting to the virtual machine (VM) the initial mapping (at boot time) of its virtual resources to physical resources. By this way, all NUMA optimizations implemented by almost all VM's OS (e.g. Linux) can become effective. However, in order to be effective itself, vNUMA imposes that the initial resource mapping of the VM should remain unchanged during the VM lifetime. Current hypervisors enforce this requirement by avoiding virtual resource migration (between different NUMA nodes, in the same machine), VM migration (be-tween different machines), and memory ballooning. However, we found that memory flipping-the most efficient network virtualization approach-violates the above requirement. In other words, a VM which performs network operations leads the hypervisor implicitly performs memory page migrations. In this paper, we show that violating this requirement can degrade performance by up to 18%. We present two solutions which mitigate the issue. We prototype these solutions in Xen hypervisor, a popular open source hypervisor, which is widely used by Amazon Web Services. The evaluation results, performed with well known benchmarks, show that our two solutions are able to almost cancel the issue, while keeping memory flipping effective.
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Submitted on : Friday, October 25, 2019 - 1:35:40 PM
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Djob Mvondo, Boris Teabe, Alain Tchana, Daniel Hagimont, Noel de Palma. Memory flipping: a threat to NUMA virtual machines in the Cloud. IEEE INFOCOM 2019 - IEEE Conference on Computer Communications, Apr 2019, Paris, France. pp.325-333, ⟨10.1109/INFOCOM.2019.8737548⟩. ⟨hal-02333517⟩

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