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Hardware-How many virtual machines can I set up?

Posted on 2012-03-12
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Last Modified: 2012-03-20
I'm new to this place and this machine currently has the "freeware" software version of VMware....We are planning to buy the software.  I don't even know where to begin...We have 2 of these machines..

Each one has the following:

DL380 G6 CTO
2 ea Quad Core E5520
32 GB RAM
2 ea 72 GB Hot Swap HD's

I want to try to utilize these machines to their optimum usage...if I had unlimited  resources (but have touse these machines) what kind of Virtual Environment could I set up with VMware or other)
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Question by:Lamrski
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Author Comment

by:Lamrski
ID: 37712188
I need to add more information to this question..
right now it has the 4gb sticks using up 8 slots in each machine?  How many more sticks can I add to each machine?
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LVL 119

Accepted Solution

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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 500 total points
ID: 37712196
the free version of ESXi 5.0 is limited to 32GB per server.

So you can run as many virtual machines as you have memory. Memory is often the bottleneck.

general rule of thumb is 5-6 VMs per physical host processor core.
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LVL 119
ID: 37712208
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Author Comment

by:Lamrski
ID: 37712212
Let's say I'm able to buy the software....I know there are many different options of the software, how many VM's could I put on each of these two machines?
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LVL 119
ID: 37712222
As many machines as you have resources for, CPU, Memory and Storage.
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Author Comment

by:Lamrski
ID: 37712223
Thanks for the URL...I have this document.  If I was able to change out the basic machine with 12 X 16 GB sticks = 192 GB Memory....would the system as it stands right now be able to handle this amount of memory?
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Author Comment

by:Lamrski
ID: 37712230
So if I had the capability of buying this much memory (192 GB) I could have approxminately 32 VM's per server?
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LVL 119
ID: 37712231
Yes, 192GB is a supported configuration, with 12 x 16 GB sticks.
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LVL 119
ID: 37712232
Yes, easily 32 VMs.
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Author Comment

by:Lamrski
ID: 37712236
Perfect Thank you!  Now it's time to ask for some money!! :)
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LVL 4

Expert Comment

by:mctigue
ID: 37712844
I disagree because it's more a factor of  storage than memory for deciding how many virtual machines (vm's) you can host on your server. This is because VMware is optimized to "give and take" resources for the virtual machines. So if one virtual machine is sitting idle and another is in need of additional memory to complete some intensive processes, VMware will automatically reallocate the physical memory in the host server temporarily for the virtual machines to use. I've successfully run several highly used virtual machines running Windows 2008 server as file servers with only 512 MB of assigned memory.

The real issue is how large each virtual server will be and if the storage will be "thin or thick" provisioned. The space on the host or SAN can get allocated very quickly. So the amount of servers your host can manage can be well over 32 vms but only if you have the supporting storage space.

Regards...
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Author Closing Comment

by:Lamrski
ID: 37743895
This answer helps ...thank you
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