vSphare 5.5 hardware requirement

Posted on 2014-08-20
Last Modified: 2014-08-24
Vsphare experts out there. One of my client is going to deploy windows2012 and vmware5.5.
They asked me to get a spec for a server.
Is there any guide line so i can follow it to get a server spec?
the esxi has to support 20-30 VMS and all is going to be windows2012.
some of the apps server can be sql or linux etc.
Question by:sara2000
    LVL 116

    Assisted Solution

    by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
    What's there budget, how much RAM, are they going to use in the VMs....

    A Dell R620 or Dell R720 Dual Processor, 6,8,10, 12 Core processors, and 20-30 x Memory in the VMs.

    Memory is often the bottleneck.
    LVL 18

    Assisted Solution

    by:Andrej Pirman
    First off, please go with 2012R2 instead. I have quite a bad experience with 2012 server (buggy :/ ).

    Second, if all servers are to be of the same technology (all 2012R2 servers), then you might overprovision RAM a bit. For example, if you would need 20 servers with 8GB RAM each, you do not need 160GB total, but it is safe to deal with 50% of that, say 96GB would be fine.

    Third, CPU as Andrew says, I'd say at least 10 or 12-Core Xeons, and dual processors is a must, quad even better, but that's totaly different price range.
    Maybe you'd better think of 2 servers, 2 Processors with 12-Core each...nice choice.

    Fourth, disks. If you are going to use LOCAL disk storage, use faster SAS 15k rpm disks, and take as many as possible. Do not go with few large disks, but rather many smaller ones, as RAID array performance increases with number of physical disks.
    If you are on budget, you may also go with 2x SSD disks in RAID1 for ESX system, swap and VM's PAGING files, and another RAID 10 (or RAID 5 or 6) on SAS 15k disks for VM storage. Fast SSD array will drastically improve performance, and price impact is not so huge.

    RAID controller is also quite important. Chose the one with at least 1GB Cache and Flash-Back and Battery.

    Another option is to use a STORAGE, for example NetApp with 12x 600GB SAS 15k disks, connected with FO 8Gbit. It will cost you some 15k US$ and it is an excellent performer.
    With a choice of a central storage, you can use 2 or more servers, each having just 2-3 fast SSD disks for own system and a lot of RAM and CPU. That way you gain in REDUNDANCY quite a lot, and with 2 servers you even do not need expensive optical SWITCHES (you use dual controllers on NetApp storage to connect 2 servers).

    Author Comment

    Thank you for your info, I have not mentioned that my client is going to buy shared storage (dell equal logic,emc or net app) and more than one server.
    Can they load vmware on SD disk with mirror config and 13 core CPUs and lot of memory? or Do they need 2 SSD disks for vmware?

    Author Comment

    How much memory windows2012 R2 requires based on your experience?
    LVL 116

    Accepted Solution

    Yes, they can install VMware ESXI on SD cards, and if using Dell Mirror SD card module, this works also. You don't need 2 SD cards, but you do if you want to mirror SD cards. (ESXi is unaware they are mirrored!)

    Here is the VMware KB on installing 5.x on USB/SD:

    We assign a minimum of at least 4GB per Windows 2012 R2 server. But that would depend on the application.

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