CPU virtualization is an outstanding feature that shows multiple physical CPUs (central processing units) installed on your computer system.
But in reality, there is only one processor installed on it. Virtual machines take advantage of CPU virtualization when you have only one computer but multiple OS installed.
Nearly all top CPU, computer, and operating system (OS) manufacturers allow you to enable this amazing feature on your computer. This article mainly discusses if enabling CPU virtualization improves or reduces performance. We will also discuss other aspects and terms in the same context.
Does Enabling CPU Virtualization Improve or Reduce Performance?
Enabling CPU virtualization reduces performance, especially when the applications or games are CPU-bound. On the other hand, CPU virtualization increases the performance when the apps and games are not compute-bound. A more powerful processor with more cores and operating speed increases the performance.
CPU virtualization allows a single computer processor to behave like multiple separate CPUs (central processing units). You must enable this feature on your computer system to take advantage of it. You can turn on CPU virtualization using processors from well-known companies like Intel and AMD.
CPU virtualization comes with the installation of virtual machines (VMs). Virtual machines are hypervisors or virtual machine monitors (VMM). Simply put, a virtual machine is a virtual computer inside your computer. You can install a separate and different operating system on it.
CPU virtualization needs hypervisors, software that allows you to execute virtual machines. The hypervisor shares the main memory and the CPU during virtualization. It increases your computer’s performance by making it think that you have installed multiple processors on it.
CPU virtualization is an outstanding feature of modern computer systems. It has plenty of advantages. Let’s discuss some of these advantages one by one in some detail:
- Increased Throughput
Enabling CPU virtualization improves the performance and throughput of your computer system. The number of processes a computer processor can execute within a certain time is known as its throughput. The CPU virtualization divides the same processor among several virtual machines for executions.
The CPU executes each process in the queue completely and perfectly. CPU scheduling is done for the fair execution of the processes. In this way, a process doesn’t have to wait for long. Enabling CPU virtualization improves the throughput of a computer if the processor is more powerful.
Three main factors define the power of a CPU, its operating frequency, the total number of cores, and the size of the register. A better motherboard with more bus width also plays an important role in increasing your computer system’s performance and throughput during CPU virtualization.
- Reduced Hardware and Energy Cost
Enabling CPU virtualization reduces hardware and energy costs to a significant extent. CPU virtualization is best because it allows sandboxing and virtual machines instead of buying separate computers. Instead, you can spend this money on upgrading your current computer system.
Virtualization allows you to make your computer behave like multiple computers. It is achieved by installing more than one virtual machine on it. Each machine has its operating system and processes to execute. It saves energy consumption and the money which multiple computers consume for running.
On the other hand, you will have to spend your money buying multiple computers. Additionally, you will need more space to keep them. Each computer will need at least one display monitor, which will become very expensive, including the cost of the computer itself. The electricity bill will also be higher.
- Reduced or Eliminated Downtime
CPU virtualization either significantly reduces the downtime or eliminates it. Downtime is when a CPU or other hardware resources are unavailable to a client. An increased downtime leaves a bad impression on the customer and affects the goodwill of the service providers.
By reducing the downtime, the responsiveness of the system increases. The requests are processed fast, and the user does not have to wait long. Enabling CPU virtualization when more RAM is installed in the computer system executes more processes as several processes are in the queue.
- Control of Access to Resources
By enabling CPU virtualization and creating virtual machines, you can provide different levels of access to the users. For example, the owner can have full access, the directors and managers can perform the relevant tasks, and the user can be restricted by defining certain authorization limits.
Similarly, virtualization allows you to provide different access levels to hardware resources. People with different authorization levels can use certain hardware and software resource limits. For example, a user can be limited to using a certain limit of resources for a certain amount of time.
- Great Centralization
Enabling CPU virtualization along with the virtual machines provides great centralization. When a single authority has full control using a single powerful computer system, it is known as centralization. The authority controls and manages all business-related things from this computer alone.
Such a computer is also called a server as it responds to client computer requests. Client computers are the ones that are connected to the server computer through a network such as the Internet or LAN etc. Being cost-efficient is the biggest advantage of centralization.
- Multicomputer and Multiprocessing
Enabling CPU virtualization when virtual machines are installed on your computer gives a sense of multi-computing. It is because each virtual machine has its operating system (OS), so each VM behaves like a separate computer. It also saves you a lot of money that different physician computers require.
CPU virtualization allows multiprocessing just like modern computers. During this, it makes a queue for all the processes that depend on your computer processor for execution. The CPU runs these processes fairly using some sort of efficient scheduling technique. Hence, you have multiple executing processes.
- Recovery from Disasters
CPU virtualization with the implementation of virtual machines has a great extent of disaster recovery. Virtual machines do not exist physically, so physical disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, etc., cannot damage them. Even the hardware failure does not affect them unless it is storage.
Such a centralized computer system has backups. A backup is a copy of the original data on the system’s storage. In case of any fatal issue in software or hardware, the backup is used to restore the complete system as it is. It allows data recovery in worst-case scenarios such as cyber-attacks.
- Increased Productivity
Enabling CPU virtualization increases overall productivity by providing all the benefits mentioned above. With virtual machines, you can logically convert your computer system into multiple computers that can execute multiple processes simultaneously.
Your productivity increases when you do two more things. Firstly, let your computer system run continuously using a reliable and cost-efficient power system that never cuts off. Secondly, use a more powerful CPU, RAM, and better motherboard with more bus speed, etc. You will notice the change.
- Vast Scalability
A computer system running virtual machines and CPU virtualization has vast scalability. Scalability allows you to expand your computer system as your business grows. Most small businesses start with a smaller system, expanding it over time by upgrading the hardware.
A faster and better computer system helps you upgrade your system. Updating the individual hardware also helps you upgrade your computer system. This hardware includes CPU, GPU, RAM, etc. You can connect multiple display monitors to it for better management and control.
Pros and Cons of CPU Virtualization
|CPU virtualization uses hardware efficiency and improves performance.||Less powerful computer hardware can decrease performance.|
|It is available 24/7 for the client, and your business never shuts off.||If only one computer is used, shutting it down causes the whole business to shut down.|
|CPU virtualization is highly responsive.|
|It allows multi-computing and multi-processing by using virtual machines.|
|It has a great disaster recovery property.|
|Maintenance of such a system is easier because of centralization.|
|It has vast scalability.|
|You can control users’ access and limit their authorization levels.|
|It is economical, energy-efficient, and environmentally friendly.|
How To Check If CPU Virtualization Is Enabled Or Not On Your Computer?
It is very easy to check if virtualization is enabled on your computer, especially when using the Windows operating system (OS). For this, right-click the “Taskbar” and select the “Task Manager” option from the menu. After doing this, a small window will open with multiple tabs on its top.
Now, navigate to the “Performance” tab and open it by clicking your left mouse button once. You must select “CPU” from the list on your left-hand side. After this, you will see the stats about your CPU on the user interface (UI). Look for the title called “Virtualization” at the bottom.
It says “Virtualization: Enabled” if enabled, as shown in the image. Otherwise, the status will be “Disabled.” So it is how you can check whether CPU virtualization is enabled on your computer. In good computer systems, it is enabled by default to improve the computer system’s performance.
Why Should You Enable CPU Virtualization?
You should enable CPU virtualization because it allows you to utilize the CPU more efficiently. There are several benefits of enabling CPU virtualization. First of all, you will be able to run virtual machines more efficiently on your computer system, increasing the potential of your computer system.
Simply, it is mandatory to enable CPU virtualization when virtual machines are installed on your computer. It will make your CPU available for all the processes related to your apps and games. Enabling CPU virtualization can increase your computer’s throughput, especially when you have a powerful processor.
Enabling CPU virtualization and using virtual machines simultaneously reduces hardware costs. Simply put, you have only one computer system with multiple virtual machines. And each virtual machine has its operating system and software to execute. You do not have to buy multiple computers.
CPU virtualization saves you a significant amount of money as it saves energy. It is because CPU virtualization is enabled on your computer, and virtual machines run on the same computer. Hence, your computer will consume less energy, and your electricity bill charges will be comparatively low.
You can control access to computing resources by enabling CPU virtualization and installing virtual machines. In this way, some users or processes can have more privileges than others. It also increases security when you implement sandboxing. Your system becomes more reliable.
CPU virtualization reduces downtime and increases the responsiveness of your computer system. Every time your client uses your system through your software, it leaves a good impression. Installing virtual machines is not enough to achieve this. You should also consider using a powerful computer processor.
Enabling CPU virtualization improves the performance of your computer system when the software to execute is not CPU-bound. It also increases the performance when the CPU is more powerful, having more cores and higher operating speed. But if the software is CPU-bound, the overall performance reduces a lot.
It is always good to enable CPU virtualization when running virtual machines (VMs). These are the ones that take the most advantage of CPU virtualization. Enabling CPU virtualization increases the throughput of your processor, and it can perform more tasks within the given time frame.
You can save a significant amount of money by enabling CPU virtualization and running the virtual machines simultaneously. You will not have to buy separate computers and their hardware to run the individual operating system and application software on each.
It will also save your electric energy, and you will not have to pay high electricity bills. You can create and maintain different access levels by properly implementing CPU virtualization. CPU virtualization will reduce the downtime of your system. It will also significantly enhance the response time.
CPU virtualization implements Multi-computing and Multiprocessing on a single computer system. You can implement multi-computing by installing multiple virtual machines on it. CPU virtualization allows multiple processes to execute fairly. It is very beneficial when doing sandboxing.
I am Syed Moazzam Raza and I have completed my Masters of Computer Science. I have vast experience in Article and blog post writing. I love to write about technology, the latest gadgets, software updates, etc. I am currently working as a freelance writer and contributing content for various reputed websites.