Virtualized environments and virtual machines

To run your operating system in multiple virtual machines.

In BigFix you can run your operating system in multiple images to benefit from the ability to share hardware and software resources. This is true especially on HCL z Systems where, within the z/VM environment, Linux images benefit from the reliability, availability, and serviceability of IBM z Systems servers and from internal high-speed communications. z/VM offers an ideal platform for consolidating Linux workloads on a single physical server where you can run hundreds to thousands of Linux images.

In BigFix design, the BESClient agent works in a loop checking the activity to run based on the contents of its directory <BESClient_installation_path>/__BESData. These activities, together with a large number of concurrent virtual machines as it is common in z/VM environments, might result in a 100% CPU usage. To avoid this problem and control the CPU assignment to processes, use the configuration settings described in CPU Usage.

Some useful parameters are _BESClient_Resource_WorkIdle and _BESClient_Resource_SleepIdle, that have default values of 10 and 480 milliseconds respectively, to control the CPU consumption by balancing the amount of work with the amount of idle time; with the default values, this means about 2% of work for each virtual machine. You can change these values if you need to have a lower percentage; the negative side in this instance is that the BigFix client becomes slower when a new activity must be processed. By setting new values, you can take account of the number of virtual machines and avoid the overall CPU being 100% busy.

With other parameters you can set your agents to remain quiet during a part of the day and become active for the remainder of the day; during the quiet period the CPU consumption is almost 0%. The parameters that control this behavior are _BESClient_Resource_QuietEnable, _BESClient_Resource_QuietStartTime, and _BESClient_Resource_QuietSeconds. For example, by setting the following values:
the agent enters quiet mode at 07:00 AM each day, remains in this state for 43,200 seconds, that is for 12 hours, and wakes up at 07:00 PM. During quiet mode, the agent uses almost 0% of CPU time and does not process activities.

Other useful parameters to control the amount of time a client stays in sleep mode, especially suitable when there are battery low power problems or the need to reduce CPU utilization, are _BESClient_Resource_PowerSaveEnable and _BESClient_Resource_PowerSaveTimeoutX (X ranging from 0 to 5).

For a full description of all of these parameters and many more, see the configuration settings in the link listed previously.