Is it possible that not activating a copy of Windows Server 2008 might have a performance impact, specifically over TCP?


  • I've been provided with a Windows Server 2008 Oracle VM. It displays "This copy of Windows is not genuine". I've submitted a request for it to be activated to the system administrator, but the request is currently being processed.
  • Local performance is not an issue, but simple SQL statements executed against a remote Oracle DB instance (on the same network, in the same IP range) via SQL*Plus take an exceptionally long time to complete. N.B. it's not the DB server - that's been tested extensively.
  • The system administrator has run exactly the same queries on two other Windows Server 2008 Oracle VMs (clones) in the same IP range. One of the other machines demonstrated the same terrible performance, but the other did not. The only reported difference is that Windows on the machine without any issues is already activated.

I'm highly skeptical: this looks like a big red herring. I think there must be other differences in configuration which have not yet been identified.

Is it remotely possible that this is due to Windows activation?!


Apologies for not being more specific. It's on Oracle VM, not VMware. Do you think the VMware articles might still be relevant?

I can't add comments yet (!) but thanks a lot for the suggestions, I'll get the system admin. to give them a try.


Power Plan was set to balanced, but changing it to High Performance has made no difference.

Activating windows has made no difference - fundamentally this was not the issue.


Yes, it is REMOTELY possible - but that is really so remotely I dont think there are practical chances of that. Would be a driver for example that readcts different when not activated (on purpose) and I am not aware of that.

So, by all means - no. SOmething is really bad here configuratoin wise and it is not the activation.


I'd agree with TomTom, that Windows not being activated would only be remotely possible, but just to rule it out, are you able rearm it so that it turns back to an evaluation version using:

slmgr.vbs –rearm

just to rule it out?

Moving away from looking at the activation being a cause, I have had, what sounds like, an almost identical performance problems on a Windows 2008 server running under ESXi connecting to an Oracle database via JBoss and SQL*Plus the only real difference being that my Oracle instance was accessed over our WAN.

I ended up eventually resolving these problems following the instructions in VMware KB 2008925. Specifically modifying the Power Plan from Balanced to High Performance. I'd also previously tried disabling TCO (VMWare KB 1009517) using

netsh int tcp set global chimney=disabled

which didn't seem to make a difference, I'm not ruling out a combination of the two helping as I didn't undo it before changing the Power Plan.

  • with regards to your edit to the original question, disabling TCO may not be as relevant due to it specifically mentioning the vmware network drivers, but I'd still consider the Power Plan settings as it should be VM agnostic. I've not used OracleVM, so that's purely hypothetical, but won't do any harm. – Mike1980 Nov 20 '13 at 9:38

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