Virtualization technologies make it possible for cloud providers to consolidate multiple IaaS provisions into a single server in the form of virtual machines (VMs). Additionally, in order to fulfill the divergent service requirements from multiple users, a cloud provider needs to offer several types of VM instances, which are associated with varying configurations and performance, as well as different prices. In such a heterogeneous virtual machine placement process, one significant problem faced by a cloud provider is how to optimally accept and place multiple VM service requests into its cloud data centers to achieve revenue maximization. To address this issue, in this paper, we first formulate such a revenue maximization problem during VM admission control as a multiple-dimensional knapsack problem, which is known to be NP-hard to solve. Then, we propose to use a cross-entropy-based optimization approach to address this revenue maximization problem, by obtaining a near-optimal eligible set for the provider to accept into its data centers, from the waiting VM service requests in the system. Finally, through extensive experiments and measurements in a simulated environment with the settings of VM instance classes derived from real-world cloud systems, we show that our proposed cross-entropy-based admission control optimization algorithm is efficient and effective in maximizing cloud providers’ revenue in a public cloud computing environment.
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