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Virtual machine memory usage alarms triggered for virtual machines when guest operating system memory usage is low (1013206)

Symptoms

  • When operating a virtual machine on an ESX 4.0 host with Intel systems that support EPT technology or AMD systems that support RVI technology, virtual machine memory usage alarms are triggered regularly even though the guest operating system reports minimal memory utilization.

    Note: Intel Core i7 (Nehalem) series CPUs include Intel Xeon 3500 Series (numbered 35xx), Intel Xeon 5500 Series (numbered 55xx), and Intel Xeon 5600 Series (Number 56xx).

  • The ESX host shows committed memory equal or near equal to that of the assigned memory even when the guest operating system is not in demand of memory.
  • When a virtual machine memory usage alarm is triggered, the guest operating system shows that the memory usage is low. A discrepancy is noted between the performance monitoring tools on the ESX host and performance monitoring applications running in the guest operating system.

Resolution

To resolve this issue, install the appropriate patch for your configuration:
These patches fix an issue where a guest operating system shows high memory usage on Nehalem based systems, which might trigger memory alarms in vCenter Server. These alarms are false positives and are triggered only when large pages are used. This fix selectively inhibits the promotion of large page regions with sampled small page files. This provides a specific estimate instead of assuming a large page is active when one small page within it is active.

See Also

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