Volkswagen Mark IV Forum banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,626 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just been playing with a trial version of VMware Workstation 5, got SBS2003 running with Exchange on our LAN in bridged networking mode... it's so cool and seems idiotproof! Was up and running with it installing a virtual machine within 5 minutes, and I still haven't read the instructions. Contrast with Microsoft Virtual PC 2004 which we got in our Action Pack, pfff... just problem after problem, never even got a virtual machine running at all and it's been left, languishing. Haven't got time to waste with stuff like that.

I made last night's lesson at college all about VMware, seeing as it's installed on all the student machines [:)] We set up two virtual machines, 2000 and 98, and got started installing the 2000 machine first.

I'm now zipping up my test SBS2003 files and sending it to a remote site for them to "install" and see if it all still works [:D]

As it happens we've got a customer who is asking if we can set them up with a new server and use the old one as a standby, but how quickly could we get the old server up and running as a substitute and with how much functionality [;)]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,626 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
At the moment I'm running Windows 2000 Pro > VMware Workstation 5 > Windows Server 2003 and it all seems good, would that be OK to run a live server, or should I use a different host OS? It's all got to be Windows - I know there's a Linux version. How do the big corporate boys do it?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,066 Posts
At the moment I'm running Windows 2000 Pro > VMware Workstation 5 > Windows Server 2003 and it all seems good, would that be OK to run a live server, or should I use a different host OS? It's all got to be Windows - I know there's a Linux version. How do the big corporate boys do it?
It would be fine to run a server, I only use VM machines for development work but it is quite robust so it should be ok. I have in the past run two VMs on my pc (a client and server) though you need a lot of RAM and performance does suffer.

You might have issues for VMware machines if you copy a VMWare machine because it then two VMWare machines will share the same SID (renaming the machine fixes this).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,788 Posts
i've mucked about with workstation 4 a little at home for hosting a client (connected to a separate physical server) for my mcse studies

its pretty cool and i managed to get ti working without reading the instructions too
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
459 Posts
If you run any VM in a live environment, don't use anything other than the ESX version.  You'll understand why if you've ever used it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
191 Posts
vmware is very good, but before you consider rolling it out hoasting multiple services I would highly recommend looking for a high availability server something with dial nics, dial power supply, dual processor, what alot of companies seem to forget is by using vmware for hosting server based services you are also putting all your eggs in one basket. I can recommend specs if required.

As far as OS goes I would recommend Server 2003, and I would put as much memory as you can, ideally 4GB as vmware loves memory.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,100 Posts
If you run any VM in a live environment, don't use anything other than the ESX version. You'll understand why if you've ever used it.
I'll second that (but check the HCL) and make sure you vMotion it up if you are SAN Connecting

Downside to GSX on Windows is that if you have to reboot the OS for security patching you need to reboot the Guests (unless virtualcentre/vmotion is used) however I have worked in companies using GSX but not for Tier 1 or 2 production services - they were used for Domain Controllers on DR Sites and test VM's. ESX is the only product geared for a production environment, but only if you implement it correctly

I would recommend your boss sends you on the 4 day training course but in lieu of that get this Essential Reading>>>

PS as a VCP, if you PM me I would be happy to review your initial proposal for your client (will sign an NDA if required) and give you some pointers on specs etc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,626 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The reason I'm pushing VMware is more for the portability aspect - our customers can handle some down time no problem, it still beats trying to rebuild all that stuff ground up on a new box. So if we need to upgrade the box to a more powerful box, the OS and configuration can be moved across and remain intact. Or if the main box gets destroyed in spite of all redundancy measures.

Having said that, we are using dual Nocona core Xeons with RAID 5 on 64-bit PCI and other carefully s elected components. There will be a spare box ready to fire up the configured virtual machine (which will be backed up on a regular basis) in a real disaster.

EDIT: Yes it will be 2003, and even in a native installation we load it up with 2 GB, so for a virtual server it would have more of course. Our current server board takes 8 GB. Note this is only for the server. We have some customers who run back end applications from vendors that are often difficult to get hold of, or have real difficulty getting stuff to work (most recent job took nearly four months to migrate due to a bespoke database, I had moved over Exchange and all other standard services pretty quickly) so we need to get it all running and be able to replicate it in an instant. It's more about maintaining the functionality than the availability (though that is a close second!).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,626 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Downside to GSX on Windows is that if you have to reboot the OS for security patching you need to reboot the Guests
That's not a problem at all, we're not talking about huge companies here, hardly any of them have more than 10 users. The clients will be running in native mode not virtual.

I've spent most of the day playing around with my virtual 2003 box and so far it seems to do exactly what I need. It runs and it talks to the network - I don't need much more than that, I'm pretty sure.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
459 Posts
Can you tell me roughly why, as I have to roll this out for real pretty soon [:|]
I could spend all day explaining why. Your best bet is to go to www.vmware.com and compare the packages. Like bigburd mentioned you really need to look at some form of training for ESX, it's a totally different package compared to WKS and GSX. ESX is the closest you'll get to pure hardware virtualisation (think hypervisor) in the Wintel world. Unix systems have had it for a while (SUN Star and IBM P-Series) ESX server is pushed more for large to enterprise level as you don't get the full benefit of ESX with out some form of a SAN.

We've got a farm of 15 ESX servers hanging of a EMC 10TB SAN running ESX 2.5.2 and Vmotion. We can move virtual machines on the fly and work bring down ESX servers when ever we want. When V3 comes out there will be load metrics built in to allow VMs to be moved on busy esx servers to lesser busy ones.

GSX or now vmware server as it'll be called and WKS5 all suffer from having to run on a guest OS, this means that they suffer a performance hit and the stability of the host OS has to be taken into account. Personally.... I'd never ever put a production system live running on either GSX or WKS.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
459 Posts
: Yes it will be 2003, and even in a native installation we load it up with 2 GB, so for a virtual server it would have more of course. Our current server board takes 8 GB.
Sorry common miss conception here. Unless your running a 64bit version of windows. You'll never be able to use more than 4gb of ram. You can physically address it. Even the accessing the last gig is difficult for windows to do. So your stuck with effectivly 3gig to split between your host os and your vms
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,628 Posts
Can't comment on VMWARE but I will say this - Avoid MS's version of Virtual PC / Virtual Server like hte plague. I've never had so much grief from such a pile of absolute rubbish!!!

Hopefully will be getting VMWare to play with in the next few weeks [y]

C

PS - no, no idea which version
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,626 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Can't comment on VMWARE but I will say this - Avoid MS's version of Virtual PC / Virtual Server like hte plague. I've never had so much grief from such a pile of absolute rubbish!!!
Yes I've found out the hard way!

Cheers for the advice guys [Y]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,100 Posts
Just got my VMWare VI3 VCP certification - don't consider trying unless you have plenty of hands on! Besides you will need to have done some formal training for it the be valid with VMware..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,560 Posts
I've got VMware workstation 4 running on my laptop so I can have the corporate image if I want it. But I hate it it crashes regularly and is very resource hungry
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,788 Posts
i've used VMware workstation 4 before but i use VMware server at work and home now

at work i use it as a clean machine to build packages on and at home as a test Debian (linux) machine
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,628 Posts
i've used VMware workstation 4 before but i use VMware server at work and home now

at work i use it as a clean machine to build packages on and at home as a test Debian (linux) machine
Snap, replaced all the old kit with a couple of AMD64s, Win2k3'd them and run VM Server on them. Loads of room for testing stuff, break/fix and what not.

I'm getting old though, I dn't do it v much now, and not so interested. Uh oh [;)]

C
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,100 Posts
Finally upgraded my Dell Server to ESX3 - just need a SAN/ISCSI and another server to start playing with VMotion HA and DRS
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top