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Hardware for VMWare

Posted on 2011-03-01
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
Hi Guys,

I'm new to VMWare and I planning to setup a lab for personal training purpose with the following server specs. What can I achieve having that kind of machine spec for lab environment for educational purpose only (i.e., watch CBT VMWare then use the lab server to configure my test environment):


Dell PowerEdge SC1435
Microsoft Windows Server 2003 R2
Dual Core AMD Processor 22212, 2.00 GHz,
2.00 GB of RAM
75GB

To build a test environment for personal training purpose, would the above machine enough for what i"m planning to do? Any recommendation as to what other type of server should I use that is affordable.

Thanks a lot.
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Question by:mcse2007
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MichaelVH earned 125 total points
ID: 35006228
Hi there,

first of all, check if the hardware is supported for vmware. You can do this here:
http://www.vmware.com/resources/compatibility/search.php?source=web&cd=1&ved=0CB4QFjAA&url=http://www.vmware.com/go/hcl&rct=j&q=VMware%20HCL%20Dell&ei=7d5sTaSLGYGBOo-70fED&usg=AFQjCNEXuH3H1BNILfm7AMoBNO0jQXhT-g

Secondly, I'd add more RAM (if you're going to run some VM's you definitely need more).

Grts,

Michael
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by:FastSi
FastSi earned 25 total points
ID: 35006266
I would agree on the RAM and maybe more hard drive space, I personally use virtual servers for everything from pentesting labs to support replication of issues and  I find RAM and disk space is crucial.

ESXI Is a good free vitural sytem and does the job.
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by:mcse2007
ID: 35006298
Hi Michael,

How much RAM do you recommend as minimum to be able to work at comfortable pace?

Thanks FastSi for your feedback as well.

Cheers
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Expert Comment

by:MichaelVH
ID: 35006312
mcse2007,

that really depends on how much virtual machines (and what type of) you are going to run.
The more the merrier actually.

On the other hand, based on the specs I'd say you'de be running MAX 5-6 VM's at a time, so go for 8-10 GB. But that's not an exact science, because it depends on what OS/services etc you're going to run.

Michael
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Expert Comment

by:FastSi
ID: 35006324
I agree with Michael, however you could probably get away with 4GB but really depends on the types of VMs your planning on deploying.
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by:coolsport00
coolsport00 earned 100 total points
ID: 35006733
First of all...let's get past the hardware. In checking your model against the HCL (http://www.vmware.com/resources/compatibility/search.php?action=search&deviceCategory=server&productId=1&advancedORbasic=advanced&maxDisplayRows=50&key=&release%5B%5D=-1&datePosted=-1&partnerId%5B%5D=23&formFactorId%5B%5D=-1&filterByEVC=0&filterByFT=0&min_sockets=&min_cores=&min_memory=&rorre=0), it seems it isn't on there. So, you'll need to get a host that can run ESXi. You can try and install it, but it may not. Typical reasons in my experience is RAID Controller. If you are able to install it...agree as above...get more RAM. RAM is so cheap, get as much as you can; I always recommend minimum of 16GB.

Another option, host-wise, since this is for testing purposes is to get a whitebox. See here:
http://www.vm-help.com/esx40i/esx40_whitebox_HCL.php

So, what you should do once you get a workable host is - install ESXi, install vCenter (with local DB), then create a couple VMs. Use the Guides (here: http://www.vmware.com/support/pubs/vs_pages/vsp_pubs_esxi41_i_vc41.html, Guides and Papers tab) for instructions, guidance, and gain more knowledge on features, etc.

Regards,
~coolsport00
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Author Closing Comment

by:mcse2007
ID: 35014423
Thanks guys...its been educational.
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