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ESXi - Should I use RDM or datastores for drives?


bob808
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I am moving from a standalone ubuntu server install to an ESXi setup and I currently have 2x6tb drives and 2x3tb drives.  I have 2 more 6tb's coming so will end up with 4 x 6tb when I am done on top of the SSD OS drive and the micro-sd that esxi boots from.

 

I would be looking to have my ubuntu server VM act as a file server (unless you can suggest a better image for pure fileshare/nas use) and will be using passthrough of a tv tuner for a tvheadend server.

 

For the drives, I will have them all set as individual raid 0's so I have 6 drives to mount.  Should I use RDM to make these all visible to my VM, or should I setup as a datastore and have this attached to the VM?  What is the recommended way to make drives visible to the VM if its essentially to be used as a NAS device?

 

Thanks!

 

 

bob

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I use RDMs. Nothing inherently wrong with formatting them as datastores and putting giant vmdks on them. But it locks your data into vSphere as the platform, which I would rather not do. RDMs with the B120i configured in RAID mode works fantastically well.

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thanks rotor!  I will have a proper play this weekend when I have some time to experiment - can you confirm my understanding that if I use RDM then I should be able to add the drives with the current data remaining intact?

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thanks rotor!  I will have a proper play this weekend when I have some time to experiment - can you confirm my understanding that if I use RDM then I should be able to add the drives with the current data remaining intact?

In my experience, when you create a single-drive RAID 0 array, you don't lose data. HOWEVER: this does not guarantee you will not lose your data. So make sure you have backups!!

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