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  • VmWare workstation and production...

    Hello!

    OK the basic idea is very simple...

    One ProLiant server with 8 GB of RAM and dual Xenon 5160 Dual core processors.
    4 disks, Raid 5.

    Windows server 2003 x64.


    OK, now the "problem".

    I want to use win2003 x64 as a host for 2 vmware workstations with win 2003 x86. On one win2003 server there will be active directory and SQL 2005 server on second vmware win 2003 would be exchange 2003 server.

    Company has 25-30 mailboxes and 5 AD users...

    Why vmware? Because you can make backup of ALL your data, AD, exchange etc... in one hour.

    I`ve done some tests...

    Installed vmware workstation on windows 2003 32-bit with 6 GB of ram
    (proliant DL380 G5)...

    So on vmware it was one server 2003 with AD, SQL 2005 and exchange server 2003.
    Performance was preety cool, backing up went smoothly disaster recovery took me to resolve less than 15 minutes...

    Now the question.

    I think that this is too good to be true. Is it possible that I`m mistaken and that I`m doing a great mistake running production on VmWare Workstation?
    Test enviroment was stable for 2 months now and now I`m serious thinking that I will virtualize my production servers as test enviroment passed my expectations...

    Please share with me, what do you think about this.


    Thank you!

  • #2
    Re: VmWare workstation and production...

    HI,

    As long as you already having two Physical Servers, why don;t create your entire infrastructure on Vmware ESX ? like mine!

    have the ESX Kernal installed on Mirrod iSCSI 36 x 2. And use the Reset of your Vmware Storage as a RAID-5.
    Build all your machines on the ESX make all your networking, routers, firewalls ect ect, and use the VMotion feature in the ESX, if one of the Physical ESX Server goes down the second will take over till you rectify the problems and bring the primary server up and running.

    Beleive me, your production environment will be up and running with "0" down-time

    Hope it helps!

    Habibalby
    ================================
    HND: Higher National Diploma in
    Computer Science(IT)


    Passed:
    MCSA+Security 2003, VCP3, VCP4
    Done:VMware DSA
    ================================[/COLOR]

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: VmWare workstation and production...

      Yeah we have 2 servers, BUT on one there is win2003 with apps already installed and configured...

      So I need workstation, and since there is no performance issues I would like to use vmware workstation instead of ESX...

      Can there be any problems except potential performance issue on vmware workstation?

      Thanks!

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: VmWare workstation and production...

        Hi,

        Yeah we have 2 servers, BUT on one there is win2003 with apps already installed and configured...

        The exisiting can be taked as a Bootable Snapshot Image, and then deploy it on the ESX server, you will be having the server up and running in less time.


        So I need workstation, and since there is no performance issues I would like to use vmware workstation instead of ESX...


        What about if the business growth and you require more applications to be run? and u dont have enough space or performance capabilities by building new machines on the vmware workstation! Also, you don't have enough Budget to buy a new physical server to be used for the xyz porpuses?

        Here's the ESX comes in the picture if you are well planned from the beginning for the future growths and business needs by utilizing the full hardware, CPU, RAM, NICS ect ect that installed on the ESX host

        Can there be any problems except potential performance issue on vmware workstation?

        As u said, there will be degration issue with VMWARE Workstation, unlike the Vmware ESX Infrastructure.

        Hope it helps,

        Habibalby
        ================================
        HND: Higher National Diploma in
        Computer Science(IT)


        Passed:
        MCSA+Security 2003, VCP3, VCP4
        Done:VMware DSA
        ================================[/COLOR]

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: VmWare workstation and production...

          You're getting by on the cheap. VMware Workstation isn't meant to support an enterprise production system, nor does it scale well. Hardware aside, you're basically paying $199 for your virtual infrastructure that you're going to run your business on. You'll get out of it what you put into it. The pieces you're going to be missing are redundancy, shared storage, high availability, DRS, VirtualCenter, etc.

          I think the biggest mistake here is you have no redundancy. No second host to fail over to should you have software or hardware issues. If your host goes down, bye bye all VMs for a while.

          Jas
          VCDX3 #34, VCDX4, VCDX5, VCAP4-DCA #14, VCAP4-DCD #35, VCAP5-DCD, VCPx4, vEXPERTx4, MCSEx3, MCSAx2, MCP, CCAx2, A+
          boche.net - VMware Virtualization Evangelist
          My advice has no warranties. Follow at your own risk.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: VmWare workstation and production...

            Originally posted by jasonboche View Post
            You're getting by on the cheap. VMware Workstation isn't meant to support an enterprise production system, nor does it scale well. Hardware aside, you're basically paying $199 for your virtual infrastructure that you're going to run your business on. You'll get out of it what you put into it. The pieces you're going to be missing are redundancy, shared storage, high availability, DRS, VirtualCenter, etc.

            I think the biggest mistake here is you have no redundancy. No second host to fail over to should you have software or hardware issues. If your host goes down, bye bye all VMs for a while.

            Jas
            I do agree with jasonboche entirely.

            BR,
            Habibalby
            ================================
            HND: Higher National Diploma in
            Computer Science(IT)


            Passed:
            MCSA+Security 2003, VCP3, VCP4
            Done:VMware DSA
            ================================[/COLOR]

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: VmWare workstation and production...

              Thanks guys!

              We are firm with 5 people employed... So there is no need for redundancy... BUT I have created test enviroment and simulated main host (2 vmwares on it) crash... Well basically my business was up and running in 12 minutes...

              So far I have not noticed hardware performance issues everything goes smoothly... Exchange database is just 7 GB in size, so exchange server goes like rocket

              AD and SQL 2005 are not hardware expensive IF there are just 1-2 apps using SQL 2005...

              So I`m thinking that I could manage with workstation for at least 3-4 years... And then if I have to, I simply buy new server (if needed) and migrate this virtual machines on it...

              But Im 100% sure that workstation has to work perfectly with firm that has 10-15 employees, without performance issues...

              What do you think?

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: VmWare workstation and production...

                A firm with only 5 people has even more need for redundancy than a large organisation. A large organisation can afford the costs of a major computing outage (like powering down 350 machines in a flooded server room for 3 working days - welcome to MY world). A small organisation cannot afford to lose 3 or 4 days business while your one virtual host containing your entire business system is repaired. I would really strongly urge you to reconsider here; if you lose that one machine then you stand a good chance of going clean out of business permanently.

                p.s. Does VMWare ESX Server even run VMWare Workstation guests?


                Tom
                For my own and your protection, I do not provide support by private message under any circumstances. All such messages will be deleted and ignored.

                Anything you say will be misquoted and used against you

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: VmWare workstation and production...

                  But I have 2 identical servers (proliant DL380 G5)...

                  So If one goes down, I simply recover hard drives and put them to other server and launch vmware images...

                  I`ve tested that, it took me just 12-15 minutes to FULL recovery and firm went into business with 20 minutes of being down...

                  I think taht this is good recovery time...

                  Greetings!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: VmWare workstation and production...

                    Originally posted by gregaSLO View Post
                    But I have 2 identical servers (proliant DL380 G5)...

                    So If one goes down, I simply recover hard drives and put them to other server and launch vmware images...

                    I`ve tested that, it took me just 12-15 minutes to FULL recovery and firm went into business with 20 minutes of being down...

                    I think taht this is good recovery time...

                    Greetings!
                    I think you should look at "VMware Server" (It is free), and at "VMware Converter Basic" (It is free too).

                    Install Linux (or W2k3-64 bit) on your DL380 and then install VMware Server.

                    Use VMware Converter Basic to copy your existing Windows WMs into VMware Server.
                    Your will be better off with this setup than VMware workstation.

                    Use esxRanger from Vizioncore to make backup of your running VM (Put the backup somewhere else than on your vmware host).
                    You have to think about the fact that harddrives do crash time by time.

                    /Hans

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: VmWare workstation and production...

                      Thanks!

                      I already built vmware server enviroment, I also think tahts better than workstation...

                      But, how much RAM does vmware server supports on GUEST OS?

                      4GB? More?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: VmWare workstation and production...

                        Originally posted by gregaSLO View Post
                        Thanks!
                        But, how much RAM does vmware server supports on GUEST OS?
                        4GB? More?
                        From the "Administarton guide vmware server v.1.0" page 13 and/or "Virtual Machine Guide VMware Server 1.0" page 13, from VMware:
                        Up to 3600MB of memory per virtual machine, depending upon the host systemís
                        configuration, the types of applications running on the host, and the amount of
                        memory on the host.

                        If you need more you have to go for something like VMware ESX.

                        /Hans

                        Comment

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