VMWare Server Hardware

Is there a benefit to using the SD Modules versus the normal SCSI hard drives for the VMWare hosts?
Jack_son_Asked:
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)Connect With a Mentor VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
yes, much cheaper, just make sure you use good quality SD cards or USB flash drives, HP, Sandisk etc
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)Connect With a Mentor VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Yes, it saves your local SCSI disks, for use as a datastore. We have been installing ESXi on usb and sd cards since 2004.

It isolates the installation of ESXi (which only requires 1GB) from your virtual machines, which aids quicker recovery.

Easier to backup and restore an ESXi installation, in case of failure.

see my EE Articles

How to Backup an ESXi installation on an USB Flash Drive or SD card, for security or redundancy.

It's supported by VMware

I would install ESXi onto a USB flash drive or SD card.

Here is the VMware KB on installing 4.1 on USB/SD:
http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1020655

Here is the VMware KB on installing 5.0 on USB/SD:
http://kb.vmware.com/kb/2004784
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Jack_son_Author Commented:
Great, thanks.  Will using SD cards effect performance in any way?  I have always used SCSI drives which may be overkill for a small deployment.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)Connect With a Mentor VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
The SD card or USB flash drive is only ever used to BOOT the server, and mount VMware Tools. ESXi OS Configuration changes (e.g. writes are instant).

So boot time is marginally slower. But how often do you restart the server.
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Jack_son_Author Commented:
Almost never, it is a much better cost too
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Jack_son_Author Commented:
great, thanks
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
No problems.
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