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The calculation for partition counts is legitimate for any disks, virtualized or not.

However, if you're really running 5 VMs on 1 host with 1 physical disk, then there's no point in having 3 replicas of your data. A failure of the one disk will destroy all 3 replicas of everything. If that's your setup, I wouldn't worry too much about performance, as it will be bad no matter what you do.

However, the partition directories only exist when there's something in them (an account, container, or object). If your cluster is lightly populated, then your replication won't be bogged down by tons of empty directories. It's only when your cluster has lots of objects in it that your replication may be slowed down by this.