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ESXi 4.0 64-bit issue

dak11
dak11 asked
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We've used VMServer for a bunch of years on our older servers and are looking to play with ESXi 4.0 on one of the new servers that came in but running into a couple issues. All of these could be because we dove right in rather then read through the entire manual (yet)

1. Server has 2.27 TB worth of disk space on 6 drives running RAID 5 but when we create a datastore the max amount of space the server allows us to use is 278 GB.

We add storage, Disk/LUN, we see the local DELL disk has 2.27 TB of capacity but only 278 GB worth of available space.Not sure why the software is not seeing the additional storage.

2. When we try to load Windows server 2003 (64-bit) we get a message stating

Attempting to load an X64 OS, however this CPU is not compatible with x64 mode.

The CPU is a Intel® Xeon® Processor E5520 which from what we understand is a 64 bit processor.

Any help would be appreciated.

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1. Max drive size is 2TB.  Anything over that won't be seen by ESXi.

2. Make sure that you have enabled virtualisation in the BIOS on the server.  Probably called Intel VT.

Author

Commented:
Thanks for the quick reply.

So, the software should still see 2 TB instead of the 287 GB it's only seeing, correct?
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
1. The max datastore size is 2TB, but when you add a datastore, you have to specify a block size (max block size) of 8MB. For Config Max's, see:
http://www.vmware.com/products/vsphere/buy/small_business_editions_comparison.html

When you added your datastore, you probably just accepted the default of 1MB (max of 256GB datastore). I recommend separating the storage into 2 datastores (at least, but you can do more) - 1.4TB each (requires 8MB block size)

2. If your CPU is 64-bit (which is should be or you couldn't load ESXi4), then all you need to do is enable Intel-VT in the BIOS and you can then load any 64-bit Guest OS you want. :)

Regards,
~coolsport00
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
Oopps...I thought you wrote 2.72TB of storage, but you wrote 2.2TB. So, add 2 - 1.1TB sized datasores, block size 8MB.

~coolsport00
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
Also, I would suggest (to separate your hypervisor from you datastore/storage) to install ESXi on a USB stick (see here: http://www.vladan.fr/how-to-install-esxi-40-on-usb-memory-key/). Once done, you can then copy your flash drive to a 2nd flash drive for redundancy. This is good so you can separate things out (as mentioned previously).

2nd, I would create 2 RAID5s (if possible), so as not to have all your VMs on 1 datastore ("all in 1 basket"). It looks like you're just testing, so it's probably not a big deal, but just something to think about.

~coolsport00

Author

Commented:
Thanks for the help so far guys. The change in the BIOS has fixed the 64-bit install issue but I'm still having issues with the software only allowing a 278 GB limit.

I attached the first 3 screens I get when creating the datastore. seems pretty straight forward but I can't see where the problem would be.

First screen I selected Disk/LUN and next
2nd screen I highlighted the disk with 2.27 TB of space and next
3rd screen shows the capacity of 2.27 TB but only 278 GB available

If I continue and choose the largest file and block size it does not increase the datastore size over that 278 GB limit.

Anyone ever seen something like this?
1.JPG
2.JPG
3.JPG
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
Again "dak"...you can't add a datastore larger than 2TB, so that is your 1st issue; 2nd, on the remaining screesn (which you didn't post), you have the option to select the block size. Depending on the size of the datastore will determine the block size you select. Again, the Config Max Guide shows the block size to datastore size comparison/maximums.

~coolsport00

Author

Commented:
Coolsport,

I did continue and I did choose the 8 MB block option but the change in the blocksize made no difference to the usable capacity. Even at 8 MB block size it was still only going to 278 GB rather then up to 2 TB. I posted only up to the 3rd screen because that one showed the capacity and available numbers.

I also realize from your previous posts about the 2 TB limit. I assume I'd be able to go up to the 2 TB limit while I play around with the software.

Top Expert 2010

Commented:
Hmm..interesting. Yes, you should. Don't you also have an option to choose how much of the storage to add? (forgot...been a while since I added storage) :)  Even if it were to only add...say 1 TB, you can go into the datastore properties and choose to 'extend' the datastore (add space to it).

~coolsport00

Author

Commented:
Yes, on the block size page it has an option where I can choose max capacity (check mark) or manually choose a size (which is the 278 GB number). I can't increase it without receiving an error telling me that the number is greater then the capacity of the disk.

I just realized that it seems that the software is only seeing the number over 2 TB.

Guess I'll start from scratch and change my RAID/Drive setup to see if it makes any difference, reinstall the server part of the software, and test if it makes any difference.
Top Expert 2010
Commented:
Ohhhhh...yes...re-do your LUNs on your SAN. Divide it up...that should rectify it. Let me know...

~coolsport00