Vmware vs Virtualbox vs KVM vs XEN: virtual machines performance comparison

Written by Gionatan Danti on . Posted in Virtualization

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Mixed CPU / Memory performance data

To shown the aggregate CPU / memory performances, I used a number of synthetic and semi-synthetic benchmarks. The first is SuperPI:

SuperPI benchmark

Apart Xen, which is considerably slower, all other virtualizers run neck to neck.

Then, I run some cryptographic related benchmark using OpenSSL. Let's begin with AES-256 encryption benchmark:

AES-256 encryption

Same story here: Xen is slower, while the others are quite on par.

It is RSA-2048 turn now. Key signing speed first...

RSA-2048 sign speed

...and verify speed then:

RSA-2048 verify speed

The results are clear: while VMware, VirtualBox and KVM offer very similar speed, Xen is noticeably slower.

UPDATE: a recent article comparing KVM vs VirtualBox can be found here: http://www.ilsistemista.net/index.php/virtualization/12-kvm-vs-virtualbox-40-on-rhel-6.html

Comments   

 
#1 Nathan 2012-09-12 03:12
This is a terrible review, to install the VMware paravirtual drivers but not the KVM Windows paravirtual drivers. All results from VMware must be discarded for comparison purposes.
 
 
#2 Marcelo 2015-11-15 03:16
A quick comparison I made between VMware Workstation Player and VirtualBox, with XP as guest, shows a ridiculous I/O advantage of VB, while VMware has a big advantage on 3D graphics.
 
 
#3 Gionatan Danti 2015-11-15 09:32
Quoting Marcelo:
A quick comparison I made between VMware Workstation Player and VirtualBox, with XP as guest, shows a ridiculous I/O advantage of VB, while VMware has a big advantage on 3D graphics.


Hi Marcelo,
VBox higher I/O speed probably is an artifact of VBox not honoring write barrier (synchronized writes) by default. While this give much higher speed, storage consistency is somewhat reduced and I do not suggest to disable write barriers on production host/machines.
 

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