Typically, machine types such as Linux VMs support guest operating systems through a hypervisor. This can add overhead and is most noticeable for network-heavy workloads because guest operating systems need to navigate the hypervisor layer before gaining access to hardware resources. Joyent SmartMachines use OS virtualization to achieve efficient and performant use of virtualized resources. With SmartOS, applications are running on bare-metal, meaning there is no extra layer to navigate.
In addition, Joyent SmartMachines also provide greater exposure to performance analysis tools such as Cloud Analytics and DTrace. Running these tools on a Joyent SmartMachine provides for a greater level of accuracy when it comes to troubleshooting performance problems.
Available in both 32-bit and 64-bit, Joyent provides a variety of developer friendly SmartMachine images. You can provision SmartMachines pre-configured with common webstack software such as Apache, Nginix, PHP, Perl, Python, Ruby, Memcached, MySQL, Postgresql and more. If you prefer to setup your own server and compile your own tools from scratch, you can provision a SmartMachine that is completely stripped down except for essential utilities.
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