Forward! by Unisys Platform Outperforms Virtualization by up to 122 Percent in Key Performance Test

In third-party test, Forward! system using Unisys secure partitioning software consistently delivers better application performance than industry-standard hypervisor

Jun 12, 2014, 08:30 ET from Unisys Corporation

BLUE BELL, Pa., June 12, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Unisys Corporation (NYSE: UIS) today announced that recent third-party testing has shown that the advanced Forward! by Unisys server platform, using Unisys secure partitioning (s-Par®) software technology, delivers significantly faster, more predictable performance than an industry-standard virtualization hypervisor.

The Forward! platform provided a performance advantage over a virtualized environment, delivering 21 percent to 38 percent better throughput and up to 122 percent faster multiple-workload performance.

The Forward! platform uses industry-standard Intel® Xeon® family processors in an advanced fabric architecture. The Unisys s-Par software on the platform goes beyond traditional virtualization technology by creating a secure "container" of dedicated resources for each mission-critical application workload – eliminating the resource contention that often accompanies virtualization and enabling faster, more predictable performance.

IT-industry research company Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG) conducted all comparative testing on a Forward! platform with attached storage from NetApp, Inc., with all components linked by a software-based high-speed interconnect.

The testing measured two critical areas of impact:

  • "Noisy neighbors." This test assessed the scalability and predictability of the Forward! system's performance in a high-traffic online transaction processing (OLTP) environment as application workloads gradually increased. In a typical virtualized environment, applications contend for computing resources, creating delays in system response as more applications are added. By contrast, in the ESG test the Forward! by Unisys system limited the impact of those incoming "noisy neighbors," delivering 43 percent more input/output operations (IOPS) per second than the industry-standard hypervisor when the first "noisy neighbor" was introduced. The Forward! advantage jumped to 122 percent with the addition of just three more "noisy neighbors." On exactly the same platform the s-Par software in the Forward! system used all processing and storage resources more efficiently than the virtualization hypervisor, at steady levels of usage.
  • Consolidation overhead. Essentially a measure of potential application performance improvement, this test assessed speed of system response as increasing numbers of users make information access requests, such as database queries. Forward! delivered system responses 21 percent to 38 percent faster than the industry-standard hypervisor, and yielded 62 percent more overall performance as measured by IOPS. In addition, at high levels of concurrent activity, hypervisor responsiveness stalled at a certain level, while Forward! performance continued to increase on a linear, predictable basis.

ESG also stress-tested the high-speed interconnect linking the components of the Forward! system. The 56 gigabyte-per-second interconnect yielded high aggregate throughput results – up to 4.8 gigabytes per second – compared to the maximum 1.25 gigabytes per second that a conventional 10 gigabit-per-second Ethernet network could achieve.

"The ESG testing is further proof that the Forward! platform is faster, more scalable and more predictable for mission-critical applications than virtualized servers," said Rob Cashman, vice president, mission-critical servers and solutions, Unisys. "Forward! offers clients the flexibility and cost benefits of virtualization along with the predictable performance and security they need for their most challenging business requirements."

"We are proud that our technology played a significant role in delivering these impressive test results," said Mike Giesler, vice president, Global SI Partner Sales, NetApp. "Together, Forward! by Unisys and advanced NetApp storage systems provide a powerful combination to help clients address a range of mission-critical applications, from OLTP to big data."

For a copy of the Enterprise Strategy Group testing report, visit

About Unisys

Unisys is a worldwide information technology company. We provide a portfolio of IT services, software, and technology that solves critical problems for clients. We specialize in helping clients secure their operations, increase the efficiency and utilization of their data centers, enhance support to their end users and constituents, and modernize their enterprise applications. To provide these services and solutions, we bring together offerings and capabilities in outsourcing services, systems integration and consulting services, infrastructure services, maintenance services, and high-end server technology. With approximately 23,000 employees, Unisys serves commercial organizations and government agencies throughout the world. For more information, visit

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RELEASE NO.: 0612/9258

Unisys is a registered trademark of Unisys Corporation. Intel and the Intel logo Xeon are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the United States and other countries. NetApp is a registered trademark of NetApp, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries. Any other brand or product referenced herein is acknowledged to be a trademark or registered trademark of its respective holder.


SOURCE Unisys Corporation