Posted 01 May 2012 - 08:31 AM
I've been reading many posts on this website over the past month and decided to sign-up. One thing that's drawn me over here is the people which seem to be very genuine and helpful.
Anyways, I now have the following hardware available:
- HP N40L server
- 2x 4GB DDR3 Ram modules (KTH-PL313E/4G)
- 1x 128Gb Crucial SSD
- 5x 2TB WD Green HDDs
- 1x Sony External USB Slim DVD
- 1 eSATA-to-SATA cable
- 1x 4 PIN Power to 2x SATA Cable
- 1x Patriot 16G Xporter XT Boost (quad channel) flash drive
- 1x 5.25"-to-3.5" mounting rails
I'm wanting to achieve running VMware ESXi5 to run a Windows server OS plus and also Windows 7 24x7, and a variety of test machines on an ad-hoc basis. I require the Windows server to run 24x7 for media streaming (movies, tv shows, music), news hosting, and for my electricity monitoring software which uploads to the internet. I'd like to keep the 5x 2TB disks in a RAID5 FlexRAID (software RAID) configuration too.
Does anyone have any suggestions on how I would be achieve this?
Should I install VMware onto the USB flash drive, then store guests on the SSD and once booted into Windows server configure the software RAID5? Will this work? Will other guests be able to see the software RAID 5 (I think not)...? Or am I better simply to run up a physical install of Windows Server and install either hyper-v or VMware on it and then configure the software RAID5 from there?
Any suggestions appreciated - TIA
As an alternative, have you considered:
(1) Load WHS2011 as your host system and use virtual box
to load your Win7 and other test environments.
WHS2011 is inexpensive but is a powerful 64b Server OS. WHS2011 is based on Server 2008-R2 Foundation which is a very good family tree, IMHO. By being the Host OS on the MicroServer – WHS2011 will see all your SATA and USB ports – if WHS2011 is a VM in ESXi or Hyper-V you would have to pass thru SATA ports (which is fairly easy) but you would be unable to pass thru USB ports (or at least it would be very difficult – which will complicate many things you may want to do).
(2) Instead of using RAID have you considered using Stablebit Drive Pool
or one of the other Drive-Extender type add-on for WHS2011(also works on SBS2011 & SBSe2011). Listen to a few of the recent podcasts for Dieharder’s assessment of the available Drive-Extender type add-ons.
Check out Podcast 180
that has information on Stablebit Drive Pool and Virtual Box. A number of people have been running Virtual Box for some time. In 180 they discuss how to load it on top of WHS2011 and set it up to shut down gracefully whenever WHS2011 is shut down or rebooted.
The only issue I see that you may have with loading WHS2011 directly onto your MicroServer is it’s requirement for a 160GB OS drive. There are a number of workarounds for this and each alternative is discussed elsewhere on this board
as well as other boards
so I wouldn’t expect it to be that big of a deal to load it onto a 128GB SSD.
Edited by Joe_Miner, 01 May 2012 - 09:08 AM.
WHS-V1: HP EX-487: 4*WD20EARX, Athena AP-MFATX30, 4GB G.Skill, E5200, Stablebit Scanner-|-
WHS-2011: HP N54L G7, Kingston ECC 8GB KVR1333D3E9SK2/8G, OS: 256GB M4, 5*ST3000DM001, WD PCIe USB3, R640L, Stablebit DrivePool & Scanner -|-
Test Labs: HP N40L, G.Skill 16GB F3-1333C9D-16GAO, rr2720 -|- HP N40L, Kingston ECC 16GB KVR1333D3E9SK2/16G -|-
S2012 Hyper-V Lab: Lian-Li K9WX, GA-Z77X-UD5H, i7-3770, 32GB G.Skill, 240GB Corsair GT + various HDD's-|-
Desktop W8P64: HAF 932,GA-X58A-UD3R,i7-930,12GB,240GB Corsair GS + various HDD's,HD5850,Samsung Series9 & 213T+Planar PX2710MW,C920 -|-
HTPC3 W8P64WMC: GD05B, GA-Z68MX-UD2H-B3, i5-2500K, 16GB G.Skill, Corsair GTX 240GB, Crucial M4 256GB , C910, Camtasia-|-
Laptop W8P64WMC: Acer 1810T, 4GB RAM, 240GB Corsair GT SSD-|-