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virt-alignment-scan(1)		      Virtualization Support		   virt-alignment-scan(1)

NAME
       virt-alignment-scan - Check alignment of virtual machine partitions

SYNOPSIS
	virt-alignment-scan [--options] -d domname

	virt-alignment-scan [--options] -a disk.img [-a disk.img ...]

	virt-alignment-scan [--options]

DESCRIPTION
       When older operating systems install themselves, the partitioning tools place partitions
       at a sector misaligned with the underlying storage (commonly the first partition starts on
       sector 63).  Misaligned partitions can result in an operating system issuing more I/O than
       should be necessary.

       The virt-alignment-scan tool checks the alignment of partitions in virtual machines and
       disk images and warns you if there are alignment problems.

       Currently there is no virt tool for fixing alignment problems.  You can only reinstall the
       guest operating system.	The following NetApp document summarises the problem and possible
       solutions: http://media.netapp.com/documents/tr-3747.pdf

OUTPUT
       To run this tool on a disk image directly, use the -a option:

	$ virt-alignment-scan -a winxp.img
	/dev/sda1	 32256		512    bad (alignment < 4K)

	$ virt-alignment-scan -a fedora16.img
	/dev/sda1      1048576	       1024K   ok
	/dev/sda2      2097152	       2048K   ok
	/dev/sda3    526385152	       2048K   ok

       To run the tool on a guest known to libvirt, use the -d option and possibly the -c option:

	# virt-alignment-scan -d RHEL5
	/dev/sda1	 32256		512    bad (alignment < 4K)
	/dev/sda2    106928640		512    bad (alignment < 4K)

	$ virt-alignment-scan -c qemu:///system -d Win7TwoDisks
	/dev/sda1      1048576	       1024K   ok
	/dev/sda2    105906176	       1024K   ok
	/dev/sdb1	 65536		 64K   ok

       Run virt-alignment-scan without any -a or -d options to scan all libvirt domains.

	# virt-alignment-scan
	F16x64:/dev/sda1      1048576	      1024K   ok
	F16x64:/dev/sda2      2097152	      2048K   ok
	F16x64:/dev/sda3    526385152	      2048K   ok

       The output consists of 4 or more whitespace-separated columns.  Only the first 4 columns
       are significant if you want to parse this from a program.  The columns are:

       col 1
	   The device and partition name (eg. "/dev/sda1" meaning the first partition on the
	   first block device).

	   When listing all libvirt domains (no -a or -d option given) this column is prefixed by
	   the libvirt name or UUID (if --uuid is given).  eg: "WinXP:/dev/sda1"

       col 2
	   the start of the partition in bytes

       col 3
	   the alignment in bytes or Kbytes (eg. 512 or "4K")

       col 4
	   "ok" if the alignment is best for performance, or "bad" if the alignment can cause
	   performance problems

       cols 5+
	   optional free-text explanation.

       The exit code from the program changes depending on whether poorly aligned partitions were
       found.  See "EXIT STATUS" below.

       If you just want the exit code with no output, use the -q option.

OPTIONS
       --help
	   Display brief help.

       -a file
       --add file
	   Add file which should be a disk image from a virtual machine.

	   The format of the disk image is auto-detected.  To override this and force a
	   particular format use the --format=.. option.

       -a URI
       --add URI
	   Add a remote disk.  See "ADDING REMOTE STORAGE" in guestfish(1).

       -c URI
       --connect URI
	   If using libvirt, connect to the given URI.	If omitted, then we connect to the
	   default libvirt hypervisor.

	   If you specify guest block devices directly (-a), then libvirt is not used at all.

       -d guest
       --domain guest
	   Add all the disks from the named libvirt guest.  Domain UUIDs can be used instead of
	   names.

       --format=raw|qcow2|..
       --format
	   The default for the -a option is to auto-detect the format of the disk image.  Using
	   this forces the disk format for -a options which follow on the command line.  Using
	   --format with no argument switches back to auto-detection for subsequent -a options.

	   For example:

	    virt-alignment-scan --format=raw -a disk.img

	   forces raw format (no auto-detection) for "disk.img".

	    virt-alignment-scan --format=raw -a disk.img --format -a another.img

	   forces raw format (no auto-detection) for "disk.img" and reverts to auto-detection for
	   "another.img".

	   If you have untrusted raw-format guest disk images, you should use this option to
	   specify the disk format.  This avoids a possible security problem with malicious
	   guests (CVE-2010-3851).

       -P nr_threads
	   Since libguestfs 1.22, virt-alignment-scan is multithreaded and examines guests in
	   parallel.  By default the number of threads to use is chosen based on the amount of
	   free memory available at the time that virt-alignment-scan is started.  You can force
	   virt-alignment-scan to use at most "nr_threads" by using the -P option.

	   Note that -P 0 means to autodetect, and -P 1 means to use a single thread.

       -q
       --quiet
	   Don't produce any output.  Just set the exit code (see "EXIT STATUS" below).

       --uuid
	   Print UUIDs instead of names.  This is useful for following a guest even when the
	   guest is migrated or renamed, or when two guests happen to have the same name.

	   This option only applies when listing all libvirt domains (when no -a or -d options
	   are specified).

       -v
       --verbose
	   Enable verbose messages for debugging.

       -V
       --version
	   Display version number and exit.

       -x  Enable tracing of libguestfs API calls.

RECOMMENDED ALIGNMENT
       Operating systems older than Windows 2008 and Linux before ca.2010 place the first sector
       of the first partition at sector 63, with a 512 byte sector size.  This happens because of
       a historical accident.  Drives have to report a cylinder / head / sector (CHS) geometry to
       the BIOS.  The geometry is completely meaningless on modern drives, but it happens that
       the geometry reported always has 63 sectors per track.  The operating system therefore
       places the first partition at the start of the second "track", at sector 63.

       When the guest OS is virtualized, the host operating system and hypervisor may prefer
       accesses aligned to one of:

       o   512 bytes

	   if the host OS uses local storage directly on hard drive partitions, and the hard
	   drive has 512 byte physical sectors.

       o   4 Kbytes

	   for local storage on new hard drives with 4Kbyte physical sectors; for file-backed
	   storage on filesystems with 4Kbyte block size; or for some types of network-attached
	   storage.

       o   64 Kbytes

	   for high-end network-attached storage.  This is the optimal block size for some NetApp
	   hardware.

       o   1 Mbyte

	   see "1 MB PARTITION ALIGNMENT" below.

       Partitions which are not aligned correctly to the underlying storage cause extra I/O.  For
       example:

			      sect#63
			      +--------------------------+------
			      | 	guest		 |
			      |    filesystem block	 |
	---+------------------+------+-------------------+-----+---
	   |  host block	     |	host block	       |
	   |			     |			       |
	---+-------------------------+-------------------------+---

       In this example, each time a 4K guest block is read, two blocks on the host must be
       accessed (so twice as much I/O is done).  When a 4K guest block is written, two host
       blocks must first be read, the old and new data combined, and the two blocks written back
       (4x I/O).

   LINUX HOST BLOCK AND I/O SIZE
       New versions of the Linux kernel expose the physical and logical block size, and minimum
       and recommended I/O size.

       For a typical consumer hard drive with 512 byte sectors:

	$ cat /sys/block/sda/queue/hw_sector_size
	512
	$ cat /sys/block/sda/queue/physical_block_size
	512
	$ cat /sys/block/sda/queue/logical_block_size
	512
	$ cat /sys/block/sda/queue/minimum_io_size
	512
	$ cat /sys/block/sda/queue/optimal_io_size
	0

       For a new consumer hard drive with 4Kbyte sectors:

	$ cat /sys/block/sda/queue/hw_sector_size
	4096
	$ cat /sys/block/sda/queue/physical_block_size
	4096
	$ cat /sys/block/sda/queue/logical_block_size
	4096
	$ cat /sys/block/sda/queue/minimum_io_size
	4096
	$ cat /sys/block/sda/queue/optimal_io_size
	0

       For a NetApp LUN:

	$ cat /sys/block/sdc/queue/logical_block_size
	512
	$ cat /sys/block/sdc/queue/physical_block_size
	512
	$ cat /sys/block/sdc/queue/minimum_io_size
	4096
	$ cat /sys/block/sdc/queue/optimal_io_size
	65536

       The NetApp allows 512 byte accesses (but they will be very inefficient), prefers a minimum
       4K I/O size, but the optimal I/O size is 64K.

       For detailed information about what these numbers mean, see
       http://docs.redhat.com/docs/en-US/Red_Hat_Enterprise_Linux/6/html/Storage_Administration_Guide/newstorage-iolimits.html

       [Thanks to Matt Booth for providing 4K drive data.  Thanks to Mike Snitzer for providing
       NetApp data and additional information.]

   1 MB PARTITION ALIGNMENT
       Microsoft picked 1 MB as the default alignment for all partitions starting with Windows
       2008 Server, and Linux has followed this.

       Assuming 512 byte sectors in the guest, you will now see the first partition starting at
       sector 2048, and subsequent partitions (if any) will start at a multiple of 2048 sectors.

       1 MB alignment is compatible with all current alignment requirements (4K, 64K) and
       provides room for future growth in physical block sizes.

   SETTING ALIGNMENT
       virt-resize(1) can change the alignment of the partitions of some guests.  Currently it
       can fully align all the partitions of all Windows guests, and it will fix the bootloader
       where necessary.  For Linux guests, it can align the second and subsequent partitions, so
       the majority of OS accesses except at boot will be aligned.

       Another way to correct partition alignment problems is to reinstall your guest operating
       systems.  If you install operating systems from templates, ensure these have correct
       partition alignment too.

       For older versions of Windows, the following NetApp document contains useful information:
       http://media.netapp.com/documents/tr-3747.pdf

       For Red Hat Enterprise Linux <= 5, use a Kickstart script that contains an explicit %pre
       section that creates aligned partitions using parted(8).  Do not use the Kickstart "part"
       command.  The NetApp document above contains an example.

SHELL QUOTING
       Libvirt guest names can contain arbitrary characters, some of which have meaning to the
       shell such as "#" and space.  You may need to quote or escape these characters on the
       command line.  See the shell manual page sh(1) for details.

EXIT STATUS
       This program returns:

       o   0

	   successful exit, all partitions are aligned >= 64K for best performance

       o   1

	   an error scanning the disk image or guest

       o   2

	   successful exit, some partitions have alignment < 64K which can result in poor
	   performance on high end network storage

       o   3

	   successful exit, some partitions have alignment < 4K which can result in poor
	   performance on most hypervisors

SEE ALSO
       guestfs(3), guestfish(1), virt-filesystems(1), virt-rescue(1), virt-resize(1),
       http://libguestfs.org/.

AUTHOR
       Richard W.M. Jones http://people.redhat.com/~rjones/

COPYRIGHT
       Copyright (C) 2011 Red Hat Inc.

LICENSE
       This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of
       the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either
       version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

       This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY;
       without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.
       See the GNU General Public License for more details.

       You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program;
       if not, write to the Free Software Foundation, Inc., 51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor,
       Boston, MA 02110-1301 USA.

BUGS
       To get a list of bugs against libguestfs, use this link:
       https://bugzilla.redhat.com/buglist.cgi?component=libguestfs&product=Virtualization+Tools

       To report a new bug against libguestfs, use this link:
       https://bugzilla.redhat.com/enter_bug.cgi?component=libguestfs&product=Virtualization+Tools

       When reporting a bug, please supply:

       o   The version of libguestfs.

       o   Where you got libguestfs (eg. which Linux distro, compiled from source, etc)

       o   Describe the bug accurately and give a way to reproduce it.

       o   Run libguestfs-test-tool(1) and paste the complete, unedited output into the bug
	   report.

libguestfs-1.22.6			    2013-08-24			   virt-alignment-scan(1)
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