I’m looking for advice on expanding and improving our ESX setup.
We presently have a DL380 G5 with 2 dual-core procs, 14 GB RAM, and about 547 GB local VMFS storage for VMs, with about 338 GB free. All VMs run on local storage on a host-based ESX Foundation server, no Virtual Center. With 4 active VMs, CPU usage remains relatively low and about 1/3 of the total memory is used, according to VI Client. esXpress is our backup software of choiice. I expect 2-4 more active VMs to come along in 2009, and 1-3 of them should be pretty resource-intensive (timekeeping/payroll servers and monitoring software).
I want to improve our current setup to be more resilient and prevent any issues if anything happens to a host and to ensure enough storage for future VMs.
Offsite replication of any kind is not feasible since we’re in a very rural area where bandwidth is hard to come by, I am investigating ‘cold backup server’ possibilities for disaster recovery. Any suggestions people have would be helpful.
My initial thoughts are to purchase 1 more DL380 G5 with 2 quad-core processors, as much RAM as I can get, and perhaps increase the RAM on the current host so it can become an effective 2nd host. This should be $8-10 grand.
In terms of available funds and what we need to buy, it looks like the VMware HA Acceleration Kit is what we can buy at this time. This will be about $7500 for 2 hosts and 1 VC. I know we may have upgrade costs later on.
I don’t expect to need more than 2 hosts for a couple more years, though I hope VMware 4.0 will bring more features to the Standard version.
I’ve been advised to buy a SAN – an HP MSA2012i in particular. HP has a 9TB SATA bundle for about $13,000, is this a good price??
I’ve only been able to find out that the MSA2000 series is “better” than its predecessors. We can’t afford EqualLogic.
1. Are there other SAN products equivalent to the MSA2012i that I should consider?? I think the equivalent Dell is an M3000??
2. Should I consider continuing with local storage and using either the Xtravirt or LeftHand Virtual SAN software??
3. What other options exist for consideration -- storage, hardware, which ESX, anything??
We are a non-profit so we do get some price breaks through CDWG for HP hardware. We have all HP servers.
I don’t know if any similar price breaks exist for VMware, nor how to find out.
Thank you, Tom