vCenter / Physical or Virtual?
Posted on 2014-12-09
I'm a VMWare shop. ESXi 5.1 servers and vCenter.
Currently, my vCenter server is a physical box. I always worked this way, so that if there was a problem with my ESXi servers or environment, vCenter would still be available to use to troubleshoot.
Over the years, I see the trend that people are virtualizing vCenter and not using a physical machine anymore. Starting with v5.1, even VMWare recommends it be virtualized for HA and DRS reasons.
My question is this, in the real world, what are the REAL pros and cons of having your vCenter as a VM? What problems did you encounter that you did not anticipate?
When I think about this, it's sort of mind bending. My vCenter server, is going to be running on ESXi hosts, that are managed by.....vCenter.
I think of things like what if the VM gets corrupted and I need to restore it from backup? How would you do that without a vCenter? How do you diagnose issues with ESXi or the VM environment, if you can't reach your vCenter?
Any tips or tricks to make life easy if you run vCenter as a VM?
I know this is an abstract question with no right or wrong answer, so I'll split points with the top responses. I hope that's ok with everyone.