How to install SBS 2008 on to a XenServer VM - any best practices?

DReade83
DReade83 used Ask the Experts™
on
I am installing SBS 2008 on to a XenServer VM today but need to ask if anyone can tell me any best practices when it comes to installing SBS 2008 into a virtual environment?

For example with SBS 2003 I was advised years ago that it was best to have a C drive (for system files and the OS), and another drive for the data (such as mailboxes, data files, etc). Is this the same for SBS 2008 or doesn't it matter?

Second is how's best to install SBS 2008 on to a VM?

Any help appreciated. Thanks in advance.
Comment
Watch Question

Do more with

Expert Office
EXPERT OFFICE® is a registered trademark of EXPERTS EXCHANGE®
Top Expert 2013
Commented:
I am no help with Xen, but have installed several Virtual SBS 2008's and a couple of SBS 2003's.
You can have a single data and sytem partition, which is the default, however it limits fexibility to some degree. If you have two partitions and you size your stytem partition large enough you will never have to touch it and then you can easily add or reconfigure data partitions.
A couple of notes: The Internal SBS backup only backs up to USB. I don't know if Xen VM's have USB support but most other solutions do not so you have to consider other options such as www.fabulatech.com  for USB acces. Also SBS is very fussy about NIC's. It must see only 1 NIC virtual or physical.
We need the hardware specs for you xen server. There is no point to create 2 virtual drives for your sbs vm if your host only has 1 hard drive.

And the sbs server is windows so you will not have any driver problems with xen.

Author

Commented:
Thanks for the feedback. Here's the specs:

Dell PowerEdge 2900 III
2x Xeon 2.8GHz CPUs (8 cores)
12GB RAM
PERC 6/i SAS RAID Card
3x Hitatchi 146GB 15,000 rpm (RAID 5 Virtual Disk; 272.25GB total space available)

@ RobWill:

Thankfully XenServer supports USB drives, and our Dell RD1000 drive works flawlessly with VMs! I don't think VMware ESXi does though (ESXi 3.5 didn't back in the day). The last time I installed SBS 2008 on another server, it had 2 NICs and loads of network related problems, like the default gateway deleting itself on every reboot - could this be the cause of having 2 NICs? I've only gone for a single virtual NIC in this install.

Also is it possible to extend the system or data partition at a later date? I can easily adjust the size of the VD through XenCenter, but I assume I would also need to extend the partition in Windows?

Thanks.
Acronis in Gartner 2019 MQ for datacenter backup

It is an honor to be featured in Gartner 2019 Magic Quadrant for Datacenter Backup and Recovery Solutions. Gartner’s MQ sets a high standard and earning a place on their grid is a great affirmation that Acronis is delivering on our mission to protect all data, apps, and systems.

Top Expert 2013
Commented:
Yes a second nic will cause gateway issues as well as DHCP sercice problems. There are also some known problems with TCP offloading options in advanced NIC properties if enabled. After installing SBS run the SBS BPA and it will advise, if there are issues.
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=86a1aa32-9814-484e-bd43-3e42aec7f731&displaylang=en
You can extend the data partition if a dynamic disk. 2008 actually allows you to expand the system partition as well, though I avoid this where possible.

Author

Commented:
Great, thanks RobWill, SBS 2008 is up and running now no problem. Running on a single NIC and no gateway or DHCP issues.

Thanks for the feedback - highly appreciated! :)

Author

Commented:
Thanks RobWill!
Top Expert 2013

Commented:
Thanks DReade83. Sounds like good progress.
Cheers!
--Rob
Ady FootSharePoint Consultant

Commented:
Hi there,

Sorry to hi-jack this thread.  Would the author mind confirming that a Dell RD1000 INTERNAL tape drive works fine with XenServer?  I'm reading conflicting information and am unsure what the truth is.  I'd like to present the tape drive to a VM for the VM to use it as a tape drive.  Many thanks!

Regards,

Ady

Do more with

Expert Office
Submit tech questions to Ask the Experts™ at any time to receive solutions, advice, and new ideas from leading industry professionals.

Start 7-Day Free Trial