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VMware ESXi 5.5 IBM Customize on IBM x3550 (Non Supported)

Posted on 2014-11-19
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Last Modified: 2014-12-13
Hi Guys,

I sort of know the answer but are wondering if you can lend me your opinions

I have a customer that has a x3550 12GB 2 x 300GB HDD 2 x QC CPU 2.66

I know this is a older server but still running very well and in my opinion more then good enough for this particular environment.

The customer has 2008 Server on ESXi 4.1 at the moment but we want to move him to 2012 server

The problem i have is ESXi 4.1 is supported on x3550 but 5.5 is not

Second problem is leaving 4.1 on the server wont give me the option to install 2012

So... i want to install 5.5 on this server which i am fairly sure will and run fine but no support off coarse.

is there anything that i should look out for other then the fact that not supported by VMware

The customer just cant afford a new server at the moment

but has plan to upgrade hardware in next 12-months in which we will get him a server that will be supported

Thanks for your ideas and opinions

Adam
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Question by:cdsaus
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Accepted Solution

by:
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 400 total points
ID: 40454456
Normally unsupported servers, show when you are installing the ESXi 5.5 software.

1. lack of compatible storage controller - installer aborts or cannot find drive to install on.

2. lack of compatible network controller - installer aborts

3. lack of compatible CPU  - - installer aborts

4. if the installer is not happy with the  physical server it will abort.

So you will know after attempting an installation, whether ESXi 5.5 is likely to install.

The next issue is stability and Random PSOD (purple screen of deaths) usually cause by the storage controller.

I would ensure all firmwares are up to date, before installing.

Just because it's not on the HCL does not mean it will not work, just that it was not certified by IBM/VMware, or it was and failed, or they want to promote new server purchases, and just do not bother certifying new kit.

We have plenty of servers in use working well with ESXi 5.5, that are not on the HCL.

But you have to access the Risk for your business, of the likelihood, of wanting support from VMware, and they may not support or even discuss your issue, because of unsupported hardware. (but you've always got EE!)

Good Luck...
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Assisted Solution

by:great_gentle_man
great_gentle_man earned 50 total points
ID: 40454725
Since you are ready to use server 2012, you may look in to hyper v as an alternate. or either speedup/wait for hardware upgrade.

or

 as Andrew said above  you've always got Expert Exchange.
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Assisted Solution

by:jhyiesla
jhyiesla earned 50 total points
ID: 40454925
I'm not sure if it's still available for download in your VMware account, but yo could move him to 5.1, which is probably compatible with the server and which should support 2012.
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Author Closing Comment

by:cdsaus
ID: 40497295
I got 5.5 installed and working very well, all controllers etc seems to have loaded fine.

had to do the following but all working well

ESXi requires the Execute Disable/No Execute CPU feature to be enabled

Thanks for all your help

I am looking at Hyper-V at the moment, my mate uses it and loves it but i have been with VMware for a long time, a bit confused if one or the other is better or not.

Thanks Adam
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LVL 119
ID: 40497380
Virtual Admins that Administer Microsoft Hyper-V state it's the best!

Virtual Admins that Administer VMware vSphere states it's the best!

Virtual Admins that Administer Citrix XenServer states it's the best!

.....

We use them ALL, and they are all very good, and work the same!

What matter's is not the Hypervisor, but the service it provides!!!

That's important to the End User!
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Expert Comment

by:great_gentle_man
ID: 40497585
1+ to andrew

and we all should be open minded to all technologies as some time due to circumstances our favorite might not have the solution when we are in a tight spot.

:)
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Author Comment

by:cdsaus
ID: 40497717
Agreed totally

Thanks
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