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VMWARE home install

Discussion in 'VMware Certifications' started by thetokyoproject, Mar 17, 2013.

  1. thetokyoproject

    thetokyoproject Byte Poster

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    Hi,

    I've got a small budget to get another laptop or desktop to do a test install for free version of ESX at home.

    Would something like the below 2 options be possible or is ESX very fussy with specific makes or hardware required:

    Medion Akoya PC8585 Desktop PC (Intel Core i3 2130 3.4GHz, 6GB RAM, 1TB HDD, WLAN, Integrated Graphics, Windows 8): Amazon.co.uk: Computers & Accessories

    Buy COMPAQ CQ58-253SA 15.6" Laptop | Free Delivery | Currys


    I know my budget is small, but it's really to give me 2 or 3 virtual machines to do study on and also as a introduction to ESX to decide whether I want to continue with this route.

    Thanks in advance for you experience and advice.
     
    Certifications: 271
  2. SimonD

    SimonD Terabyte Poster Moderator

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    White boxing is fine, where you're going to have an issue is ram, ideally you want a minimum of 2gb of ram for ESXi on it's on, never mind any actual VM's you want to run.

    I have to be honest and say you would be better off buying something a little more dedicated towards virtualisation or at least something with a little more ram.

    What are you planning to run the ESXi software via? Workstation or VMware Player?
     
    Certifications: CNA | CNE | CCNA | MCP | MCP+I | MCSE NT4 | MCSA 2003 | Security+ | MCSA:S 2003 | MCSE:S 2003 | MCTS:SCCM 2007 | MCTS:Win 7 | MCITP:EDA7 | MCITP:SA | MCITP:EA | MCTS:Hyper-V | VCP 4 | ITIL v3 Foundation | VCP 5 DCV | VCP 5 Cloud | VCP6 NV | VCP6 DCV | VCAP 5.5 DCA
    WIP: VCP6-CMA, VCAP-DCD and Linux + (and possibly VCIX-NV).
  3. thetokyoproject

    thetokyoproject Byte Poster

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    thanks for the advice Simon. I think I was planning to use the vmware player. i'm not sure my budget can stretch enough to get a good server to install esx properly so may have to give this idea a miss. i've not bought a PC/server for a while now so not entirely sure how much i'd need to save to get adequate hardware for this.
     
    Certifications: 271
  4. Coupe2T

    Coupe2T Megabyte Poster

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    With a small budget have you considered doing your own build? For the same money you have to spend I am sure you could build something better than what you have listed, and more importantly could bulk up the Ram as part of the build.

    You could probably even save a few pound on picking up some less crucial parts such as case second hand etc.

    Just my 2 pence worth.
     
    Certifications: ECDL, Does that Count!?!
  5. SimonD

    SimonD Terabyte Poster Moderator

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    Well, I have a Lenovo TS200 that was up for sale, looking for about £350, it's got 16GB ram, Xeon X3460 (2.8ghz CPU) and runs ESXi perfectly (using that to run the OS rather than layering it on top of another OS). You can pretty much use it headless as well (ie without a monitor\kb).

    Let me know if I can be of help because I have some of the components up for sale at the moment individually (CPU alone was a £200 upgrade).

    For £400 I would throw in the M1015 raid controller with the RAID5 feature key (feature key was £100 on it's own) and 4 drive trays (again they cost between £10 and £20 per tray).

    All in it was a cracking server (I had 4 of them, just upgraded to 2x 32GB shuttles over the last two months at a cost of £600 per box, so have been selling them off, just got this last one left).
     
    Certifications: CNA | CNE | CCNA | MCP | MCP+I | MCSE NT4 | MCSA 2003 | Security+ | MCSA:S 2003 | MCSE:S 2003 | MCTS:SCCM 2007 | MCTS:Win 7 | MCITP:EDA7 | MCITP:SA | MCITP:EA | MCTS:Hyper-V | VCP 4 | ITIL v3 Foundation | VCP 5 DCV | VCP 5 Cloud | VCP6 NV | VCP6 DCV | VCAP 5.5 DCA
    WIP: VCP6-CMA, VCAP-DCD and Linux + (and possibly VCIX-NV).
  6. thetokyoproject

    thetokyoproject Byte Poster

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    thanks for all the advice simon. i really like the look of the hp proliant range so may try and save for a little longer and wait for a good deal on one of those.
     
    Certifications: 271
  7. jamin100

    jamin100 Byte Poster

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    Have you thought about a HP Microserver?
    It can take 16GB RAM and I have mine running ESXI with 4-5 VM's simultaneously

    I think the £100 cashback deal has ended now, but theres always a few going for around the £150 mark on eBay.
    Add £75 ish for 2 x 8GB sticks (make sure you get one that will work)

    And thats about it. . . I run mine headless in a cupboard and connect to it wirelessly
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2013
    WIP: 70-680
  8. csx

    csx Megabyte Poster

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    If you can get it on a cashback deal (never know it may restart) then this option IMO. Craigie managed to study and pass the View exam using 2 of these and a HP ML 115 for storage I believe (Lab | vmFocus). I also used the Microserver to run two ESXi hosts (running Windows 7 as the OS as its my HTPC also) to pass the VCP5-DV.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, 70-271 & 70-272, CCENT, VCP5-DCV and CCNA
    WIP: Citrix
  9. StiffordMohammed

    StiffordMohammed New Member

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    Alternatively, have a look at the AutoLab project (google "vmware autolab"), which uses VMware Workstation to set up a nested lab. With cheap RAM (I bought 32GB RAM for my custom-build i5 for circa £100), and a decent processor you're well on your way. Make sure you get an SSD to ensure fast boot-up times / good IOPs for your VMs.
     
    Certifications: CCNA, CCNP, MCSE, VCP5-DV, Prince 2
    WIP: VCAP5-DCA
  10. thetokyoproject

    thetokyoproject Byte Poster

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    thanks jamin. i bought a N40L which will be delivered next week. missed out on cash back deal but it's still relatively well priced.

    i'll stick with the 250 drive and maybe upgrade to 8Gb for now (will upgrade both when I get some more saved up later on).

    do you reckon i can run esxi off a 4Gb memory stick?
     
    Certifications: 271
  11. jamin100

    jamin100 Byte Poster

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    It will run but you will be limited to the number if vm's you can run at the same time. You'll probably get 2 at a push

    You can run esxi off a USB drive and there is an internal USB port you can use too

    When you do start filling it with drives there is a hacked bios to allow the Sata drive at the top to run at full speed. I've seen these little boxes with over 6 drives rammed in them...

    I love mine, it's on 24/7
     
    WIP: 70-680
  12. thetokyoproject

    thetokyoproject Byte Poster

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    i think i might try for the 16GB straight away. thx for the tip about the drive/bios change.
    i'm trying to save on utilities and also lower the carbon footprint so probably won;t do 24/7
     
    Certifications: 271
  13. jamin100

    jamin100 Byte Poster

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    It's a ridiculously low powered machine, I think depending on what you have it doing it runs at 20 watts idle.

    Take a look at the microserver wiki and it'll list all findings.

    Also research the 16gb ram as only specific kits will work..
     
    WIP: 70-680

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