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Newbie question: how to generally arrange virtual host/guests?


Royco
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Since I'm just starting to experiment with virtualisation, I was hoping to get some advice.

 

At the moment I'm experimenting with Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) running under CentOS 7 as host and Sophos running as guest.

 

I suspect there's a lot to learn and wonder whether it might be better to study ESX (or other). Many people seem to use it and wonder if it provides some benefit.

 

Should I make the switch and run CentOS/Sophos as guests?

 

 

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Starting out running a guest OS under an active host OS for experimentation is fine but as you use it more I recommend running it on a dedicated hyper visor that is not used for anything else. In your case running a firewall that goes doubly true where both the in and out port should be on seperate nic ports not in use by other VMs. I run ESXi as my hyper visor for most of my VMs but then have vsphere manager running on my server2012r2 in a hyperv. The vsphere is the only when I need to clone or migrate VMs.

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This is indeed one of the issues I have: how to give the Sophos guest best access to the LAN/WAN. For now I've created bridge devices in CentOS, but this seems sub-optimal to me. I have the feeling two OSs (CentOS & Sophos) are using resources for the same network interface/traffic.

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I run untangle as a VM, my ESXi host has 5 ports on it.  2 are general network, 1 is Internet, 1 is internal lan and 3rd is DMZ.   this gives me flexiblilty as well as security minus running untangle on its own VM host.

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Doesn't this lead to an issue that, when you need to update ESXi, you have to cut off Internet access to everyone else in the house?

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Starting out running a guest OS under an active host OS

IMHO, this is not correct for KVM...
 
KVM is type 2 hypervisor that is hosted by the operating system, and isn’t a bare metal hypervisor. This is a persistent myth, but the truth is that KVM actually does run directly on x86 hardware. People assume it is a type 2 hypervisor because one of the ways that it is packaged is as a component of Linux - so you can be running a Linux distribution and then, from the command-line shell prompt or from a graphical user interface on that Linux box, you can start KVM. The interface makes it look like it is a hosted hypervisor running on the operating system, but the virtual machine is running on the bare metal - the host operating system provides a launch mechanism for the hypervisor and then engages in a co-processing relationship with the hypervisor. . In a sense, it is taking over part of the machine and sharing it with the Linux kernel.
 
On x86 hardware, KVM relies on the hardware virtualization instructions that have been in these processors for seven years. Using these instructions the hypervisor and each of its guest virtual machines run directly on the bare metal, and most of the resource translations are performed by the hardware. This fits the traditional definition of a “Type 1,” or bare metal hypervisor.
 
You can also get KVM  packaged as a standalone hypervisor - just like VMware ESX is packaged - but initially KVM was not available in that package. One way of doing this is with Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (RHEV).
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  • 2 weeks later...

...

it might be better to study ESX (or other).

...

 

If you mean 'study' because its something you want to put on your career resume, then i would recommend that you studied ESX, simply because it is the prevelent hypervisor in the industry.

Its a bit like Cisco I guess - not nessesserily the best hardware/software for the price, but the whole package (including support) is why its used.

 

If its just for your own fun, then try them all and see what fits best with you!

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