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Window sbs 2008 partition sizes?

Posted on 2010-08-20
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
We are using VM Ware 4.01 and have 2 RAID 5's logical partitions.  i will be installing sbs 2008 only for present time.  We will obvisously need to create virtual hard drives but im not sure how sizes to create and which drives to put them on.  

Any recommendations for virtual hard drives to create and which volumes to put them on is welcome

also What size should the Windows 2008 sbs system partition be taking into consideration future growth?
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Question by:resolver1
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12 Comments
 
LVL 24

Expert Comment

by:Mike Thomas
ID: 33484660
I would suggest 80gig for the OS and whatever is required for the data, you can grow or shrink volumes in 2008 but you can only grow volumes in VM iirc not shrink them so have that in mind.


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LVL 28

Expert Comment

by:bgoering
ID: 33485366
I would go with the microsoft requirements (http://www.microsoft.com/sbs/en/us/system-requirements.aspx) that appear to need 60GB. As MojoTech indicated use whatever your feel a need for for data partitions. There should be no difference for MS specs whether it is installed on a virtual or a physical server. The advantage on a virtual server is that it is pretty easy to add more space if needed.

Typically I/O load on OS partitions is pretty light, I would probably put both OS and DATA on the same RAID group, however if you are committing this ESX server to host this single 2008 SBS environment then by all means split up the load over the two raid arrays.

When considering load consider expected load from all VMs sharing a datastore.

Good Luck
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Author Comment

by:resolver1
ID: 33490976
Microsoft recommends a minimum of 60 GB.  How much room would that leave after a fresh install of SBS 2008? i want to make sure there is enough space on the partition for 3 to 4 years in future.  any recommendations would be helpful?

To help with make the system partition as static (in regards to space consumed) as possible I will also be moving Exchange, SharePoint, User’s folders, User’s redirected documents, and WSUS content to the data partition.  Anything else you would recommend moving?
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Author Comment

by:resolver1
ID: 33490982
Forgot to mentioned there will be a separate virtual hard drive for the swap file.
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LVL 28

Expert Comment

by:bgoering
ID: 33491468
I would still start off with 60 GB for the OS partition - the OS partition utilization doesn't tend to grow much after everything is installed - and in VMware if you need to make it larger at some point it is pretty easy to do.

For your data drive its another story - data drives can grow a lot over time... For my WSUS / WDS server I have allocated 120 GB for those two applications on 2008 R2 and it is about 50% utilized. Only you can estimate your space reqirements for Users folders, share point, redirected documents, and Exchange - you might consider implementing quotas on those to keep the users under control and go from there.

I don't really understand your last comment regarding swap - do you mean your ESX is configured to place swap somewhere other than the vms folder? Or are you refering to the virtual machines paging file? If the former than swap space is allocated at vm power on equal to the memory size configured for the VM. If the later you control how much paging file space is to be used - I typically allocate two times the memory allocation.

Hope this helps
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LVL 2

Assisted Solution

by:sbs-mix
sbs-mix earned 668 total points
ID: 33492263
my opinion is you should consider around 50 gigs for the os and wsus services if you are running on them.
you should add anything between 20 to 30 gigs for exchange, taking into consideration that you don't want to change settings every 3 months, but that really depends on your e-mail trafic.
If you do file sharing, i'd put that on a drive independent of the os, even if ure under a vm. note that moving the exchange database is NOT straight forward so i'd watch out for this.
otherwise, you're on your own. At the price of gigabyte today, i wouldn't be stingy on space, and buy myself some big drives so i have at least 50% space free. this leaves room for growth, and will keep performance at a realtively decent level once your data grows. personnally, i have around 40% usage, 60% free on my own servers.
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LVL 6

Accepted Solution

by:
siht earned 1332 total points
ID: 33497831
We run SBS 2008 under ESXi in a small environment of 10 users. In our case I found the 60GB recommendation for the system partition inadequate and managing it time consuming. SBS can generate a lot of logs, many of which you can turn off but they will still eat space. The real main offender is the winsxs folder which grows continuously and cannot be shrunk AFAIK.

I recently enlarged my SBS 2008 C:\ partition to 100GB and will use this as a starting point in the future.

The C:\ partition running out of space on SBS 2008 is a common issue, the OS loves to grow. Keep in mind that 60 GB is the bare minimum for a successful install. Also remember that if your SBS C:\ gets below 5% free space Exchange will stop delivering email, I found that out the hard way.

http://blogs.technet.com/b/askcore/archive/2008/09/17/what-is-the-winsxs-directory-in-windows-2008-and-windows-vista-and-why-is-it-so-large.aspx

http://simultaneouspancakes.com/Lessons/2010/01/13/recovering-hidden-disk-space-used-on-sbs-2008-c-partitions/

http://blogs.technet.com/b/sbs/archive/2010/03/02/recovering-disk-space-on-the-c-drive-in-small-business-server-2008.aspx

The size of your data partition can only be determined by you and your environment. I started with 80GB and upped that to 150GB when I enlarged the C:\ partition.

We also run a separate 10GB VMDK for the Page File.

Running the move data wizards should be one of your first tasks after you have SBS 2008 installed and functional, get as much as you can off the C:\ as you have planned to do.

This article is a good list of real world usage and tweaks for SBS 2008, it's not perfect out of the box:

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/small-business-server-2008-build-document.aspx?wa=wsignin1.0

Good Luck
0
 

Author Comment

by:resolver1
ID: 33499519
Thanks everyone and especially siht.  The post were very informative.  I think ill go for 120 gig will be enough for the os and a seperate vmdk for the page file. I want to make sure we have plenty of room for hte future.

I really like the link siht.   http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/small-business-server-2008-build-document.aspx?wa=wsignin1.0
0
 

Author Comment

by:resolver1
ID: 33566134
I've decided not to run a virtual enviroment for SBS for other reasons and ill be using a physical windows 2008 sbs installation.  Ive chosen a 150 GB size for the system partition.   Is there anything that should be changed due to changing to a physical enviroment?
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LVL 6

Assisted Solution

by:siht
siht earned 1332 total points
ID: 33566648
Not really, the system requirements do not change for virtual or physical environments.
You could consider a different RAID set up as you will see a performance benefit from keeping your OS and Data on separate sets of disks. RAID 1 for the OS and RAID 5 or 10 for the data is pretty common. I prefer RAID 10 if you can afford it.

How much RAM are you planning to install? 4GB is the minimum but it'll run like a chain smoking coal miner, 8GB works pretty well but again it depends on the scale of your deployment.
0
 

Author Comment

by:resolver1
ID: 33578043
yeah already chosen RAID 1 for the OS and RAID 5 for the data (spare disk).  20 GB for the RAM, probably abit of a over kill but historically we dont get much funding (this machine is replacing NT 4) so having a spec machine is very nice and room for any additional roles should we need it.
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Author Closing Comment

by:resolver1
ID: 33578071
thanks guys
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