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Old 03-15-2009, 09:40 AM   #1
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KVM Hypervisor and Guest OS setup? Help!

Oddly I couldn't see a Virtualization forum so I have put this here, feel free to move it if it is more likely to be answered elsewhere.

I have been using Linux for the past 3 or so years, either running it for workstations or servers, and now I want to set up a server for Virtualization. I have been doing a fair bit of research about the different ways of doing this, and I have decided to go with KVM. I usually use CentOS, but will have to use Debian to use KVM. I just have a few questions about the best way of setting it up.

We have a pretty powerful server* which we are planning on collocating to a data centre and running web servers from the VMs. Virtualization seems like the best way to allow for simpler administration, and also allow us get the most out of our server's resources.

*Intel Xeon X3230 Quad Core, 8GB Ram, 4x 15k 147gb SAS (RAID 6)

What is the best way to set this up then? I was thinking we could install Debian as the Host/Hypervisor over the whole drive, and give it a 16GB swap partition. Then I guess when the VMs are installed they live on the Debian drive as a file, or do they need their own partitions?

Are the guest OS's capable of using the Host's swap space? Its bad enough losing 16GB as a swap partition to the host OS, but please don't tell me I need to supply the VMs with their own swap partition aswell - im curious as to if the server will ever need to use swap space as it has alot of ram, let alone require extra swap for each VM too?

KVM is still very new, but does anyone know any good books/resources out there? The virtualization books I have seen don't seem to cover KVM, just Xen and others.
Old 03-17-2009, 05:23 AM   #2
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Old 10-15-2009, 06:43 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by sheepy View Post
Try again - there's a new virtualization forum open, and RHEL5.4 has native support for KVM
Old 10-15-2009, 08:45 PM   #4
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The rule of swap = 2 x RAM really only applies to systems with less than say 1GB of RAM.
Unless you've got major overload issues, 1 x RAM or even 0.5 x RAM for your system should be plenty.
Good info here


debian, kvm, virtualization, vm

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