In order to maintain the best performance and be able to fully use features of physical hardware on VMware Cloud on AWS:

1. Upgrade VMware Tools

VMware Tools is a set of services, drivers and modules that enable several features for better management of, and seamless user interactions with, guest’s OSs. VMware Tools can be compared with the drivers pack required for the physical hardware, but in virtualized environments.

Upgrading to the latest version will provide the latest enhancements and bug and security fixes for virtual hardware devices like VMXNET3 network adapter or PVSCSI virtual controller. For example, VMware Tools version 10.2.5 enables RSS Scaling be default for any new installation.

2. Upgrade Virtual Machine Compatibility (virtual hardware version)

A virtual machine’s compatibility determines the virtual hardware available to the VM, which corresponds to the physical hardware available on the host machine. Virtual hardware includes BIOS and EFI, available virtual PCI slots, maximum number of CPUs, maximum memory configuration, and other characteristics. You can upgrade the compatibility level to make additional hardware available to the VM For example, to be able to assign more than 1TB of memory, virtual machine compatibility should be at least hardware version 12.

It’s important to mention, that the hardware version also defines maximum CPU instruction set exposed to a VM: for example, a VM with the hardware level 8 will not be able to use the instruction set of the Intel Skylake CPU.

On VMware Cloud on AWS we recomend to use the latest availible VM Compatibility version, with version 11 (ESXi 6.0. and later) being the minimum recomended and version 9 (ESXi 5.1 and later) minimum supported.
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