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Question about the free VMware 3 ESX for Windows Server ?

Posted on 2008-10-02
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
I intalled VMware ESX and GSX 2.5 in the past on Windows Servers one with 4 VMs the other server with 8 VMs in the past and I plan install VMware ESX 3.5 on a Windows 2003 Server and want to know how long it may take to install timewise for 4 VMs. Is the free VMware 3 ESX that runs on a Windows 2003 Server host easy to install like ESX 2.5  and GSX 2.5 and does it come with the the console?
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Question by:cap7
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10 Comments
 
LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:bhanukir7
ID: 22624003
Hi,

The free ESX 3.5i is not the same as ESX 2.5/GSX 2.5. Those were applications which provided Virtualization on top of a OS like windows or Linux. ESX3.5i is a OS itself which has a very small foot print around 32MB if you are using the onboard Install or 250 MB if you are installing it using a CD.

If you want to install Virtualization product on your current windows OS then you should install VMware Server 2.0 which is free and has finished the beta stage and is at RTM version 1 or 2.

As far as installing VMs are concerned you can migrate the VMs to VMware Server without any issues.

That is uninstall GSX and install VMware server and then add the VMs to the VMware server.  VMware server 2.0 comes with a Web based console.

bhanu
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Author Comment

by:cap7
ID: 22624482
What version would I buy for installing on top of a Windows 2003 OS ?
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LVL 42

Expert Comment

by:Paul Solovyovsky
ID: 22624956
As mentioned bhanukir7 you would not need to buy the VMWare product to install on Windows 2003.  VMWare's product for this is VMWare server which is available as version 1.0.7 (stable build) and version 2.0 witch is in the RTM phase (final testing phase before gold master)


Both are available for free.  To use your current virtual machines with the new version you may need to the VMWare Converter starter edition to migrate to the new version.  The application is easy and straightforward to use.

The one thing to keep in mind is that if you're installing it on Windows 2003 standard edition you only have 4GB of memory available to use for the OS and the virtual machines.  If you use the enterprise edition or Windows 2008 X64 you will have more memory options.  If your server is 64 bit with Intel VT you'll be able to install 64 bit virtual machines if needed on either the VMWare Server and ESXi (which is now also freee and provides you with faster and more efficient hypervisor since it is its own OS)

My $.02

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LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:bhanukir7
ID: 22624973
Hi,

VMware server 2.0 is a free version. There is not charge for that. You  can download it for free.

you can download from this link. You would require to register for this.

https://www.vmware.com/freedownload/p/download.php?product=server20

bhanu
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Author Comment

by:cap7
ID: 22627758
This is for a productive enviorment. Nothing is free I think. How can I setup 6 VMs with HA and image exiting servers with file converter and get technical support ?
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LVL 42

Expert Comment

by:Paul Solovyovsky
ID: 22627901
VMWare Server and ESXi are free, support is a paid option.   To setup HA (High Availability) is an added option only with ESX and you will need to have at least two hosts and shared storage location such as a SAN Lun or NFS.

Converter will convert just about any physical, virtual, or image to a virtual machine, either to VMWare Server or ESX/ESXi
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LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:bhanukir7
ID: 22628469
Hi Cap

as a matter of fact none of the Microsoft OS running on VMware platform are supported by MS unless you have a Gold or premium support.

at this point VMs running on VMWARE ESX are not officially supported by MS.

I had responded to your question where you have asked how to install ESX 3.5i on windows and the reply is that  Windows 2003 and ESX 3.5i are different OS.

GSX2.5 and ESX 2.5 were softwares which provided Virtualization.

While ESX 3.5i is a OS which provided virtualization.

Hope that clarifies you initial query.

The option of installing VMware server was given if you want to persisit with installing virtualization application on your windows 2003 box.

If you want to use ESX 3.5i then you can install the same on a physical server and run VMs on it.

Support for ESX 3.5i is again not free it is paid. You might need to shell out around 1500 US dollars.

bhanu
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Author Comment

by:cap7
ID: 22634997
Thanks bhanu it is almost all clear to me now I have 2 Dell 2950 and a Dell SAS MD to use with 3,500.00 budget to virtualize 4 to 8 VMs hopefully with HA and use File Converter for P2V, I also want the console. Can I get the ESX 3.5 with the console and file converter for the 8 VMs for free, Then pay for support ?
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LVL 23

Accepted Solution

by:
bhanukir7 earned 2000 total points
ID: 22637578
Hi,

We dont need vmware converter for this. Check this link.

http://www.vmware.com/support/esx2/doc/esx20admin_migrate_other_vms.html#1041598

this should help you. As your GSX ESX version is 2.5 you can uninstall the product and then install vmware server and migrate the vms.

Hope all the VMs were set to use SCSI disks and not IDE.

bhanu

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LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:bhanukir7
ID: 22638428
Hi cap7

I forgot to answer all your questions as far as using ESX3.5i is concerned if the budget is 3500 excluding your hardware and the licenses cost of OS then let me try to give that figures out her.

the support cost for ESXi is

        
VMware ESXi 3.5 for 2 Processors + Platinum (24x7) 1 Year Support       $595.00
      
VMware ESXi 3.5 for 2 Processors + Gold (12x5) 1 Year Support               $495.00

Now if you want to use a Console the ESX35i does not come with a interface. please check out this link

There are certain command line tools which are free

http://www.vmware.com/download/vi/drivers_tools.html

instead of that if you want to use the VI client or the Virtual infrastructure then you would need to pay around
$3500

Check this link out

http://www.vmware.com/solutions/smb/whats_new.html#c62409

if its over your budget then i think you can use VMware server or use windows 2008 hyper-v

bhanu



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