Proper way to performance test/baseline drives from a guest VM's perspective


Nov 29, 2016
So I added a secondary drive to my esxi 6.5 host the other day and then created a new datastore for my existing Windows 10 VM (currently the C: resides on an SSD). I added the datastore as the D: drive (GPT formatted when asked by Windows in Diskmgr.msc) and then I started to install some apps to the drive.

However, thats when it went south. Anything running from that drive seemed ridiculously slow and jittery. A few weeks ago I had a similar problem when writing data between an SSD and HDD and a kind Redditor pointed me to a post about VMware's newer AHCI drivers being a bit buggy. So I blacklisted those at the time and am now just running the legacy driver.

I didn't notice anything in the interim because I was dead focused on getting GPU passthrough working but now that it is, I need a little more space which is why I had these extra 7200 RPM HDD's sitting in the server.

So long story short, what's the proper way of getting some baseline numbers for storage performance? What type of performance should I expect to see from a standard 7200 HDD?

My setup:

Xeon E3-1230 v5
1 x 120GB SSD
1 x 480GB SSD (holds C: drive for Win10)
1 x 3TB HDD
2 x 2TB HDD (was placing the 500GB additional datastore for Win10 on one of these)

While I do have other VM's running, I dont have any of their datastores on the drives supporting the Win10 VM (they run off the other SSD and the 3TB HDD).

Thanks for any feedback!