Computing today is shifting from hosting services in servers owned by individual organizations to data centres providing resources to a number of organizations on a shared infrastructure. Managing such a data centre presents a unique set of goals and challenges. Through the use of virtualization, multiple users can run isolated virtual machines (VMs) on a single physical host, allowing for a higher server utilization. By consolidating VMs onto fewer physical hosts, infrastructure costs can be reduced in terms of the number of servers required, power consumption, and maintenance. To meet constantly changing workload levels, running VMs may need to be migrated (moved) to another physical host. Algorithms to perform dynamic VM reallocation, as well as dynamic resource provisioning on a single host, are open research problems. Experimenting with such algorithms on the data centre scale is impractical. Thus, there is a need for simulation tools to allow rapid development and evaluation of data centre management techniques. We present DCSim, an extensible simulation framework for simulating a data centre hosting an Infrastructure as a Service cloud. We evaluate the scalability of DCSim, and demonstrate its usefulness in evaluating VM management techniques.
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