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Old 10-21-2009, 10:58 AM   #1
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Question What hardware/OS with a small VMWare Server

Hi everyone !

I'm planning to install a small virtualisation server, to have some VM running on it and standing ready, but mainly just sitting there and waiting to be used. I don't expect to have more than 4 or 5 VMs on it, and no more than 1 at a time being actually in use. I have some small experience running VMs on my desktop computer (using either VMWare or Parallels Desktop on my Mac), but nothing more, and only as I need them, not all the time as if they were on a server.

I read the article in Linux Journal 187, and will preferably go with VMWare server.

I would like some pointers about what to choose as the host distro (Debian, Fedora, CentOS, Ubuntu). It's a server, so I don't really need a desktop distro, but at least some good GUI, since I don't feel like having a pure CLI server. I would go preferably with a Debian, if there isn't a reason to get another one (like nicely integrated packages to install VMWare).

Some questions I have are also about what kind of hardware to put under the hood:
. what CPU ? Do I need one with virtualization extensions ? I guess it's better :-) , and I found the list of processors supporting that on Wikipedia:

. what amount of RAM : 4 Gb should do it, assuming that when a VM is inactive, it gets sort of swapped, and that I don't need an amount of RAM on my server equal to the sum of the RAM of each started VM.

. As for the disks, I guess that fast and big ones are better as usual :-) , so maybe a couple of 7200 rpm/750 Gb in RAID 1 should be ok.

Thanks for your help and your thoughts :-)
Old 10-21-2009, 10:21 PM   #2
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Location: Hyderabad, India
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Why don't you go for the ESXi 4, I am sure they have a free version of this.
This baremetal hypervisor should solve your problem of selecting the host OS.


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