7 Replies Latest reply on Dec 3, 2004 5:44 PM by bblnews@hotmail.com

    How-To: Build a Thin Host

    Ken.Cline Champion

      Provide a set of instructions that tells users how to build a very thin host (both Linux & Windows) for GSX & WS. There have been many, many requests for an "ESX Light" and the best way to get there is by providing a means to have the thinnest possible host for the hosted products.

       

      If you really[/i] want to make people happy, provide a free for download VMware Linux distribution that is pre-configured to support GSX/WS. This would do a few things:

       

      1. Make it easy to get a supported thin configuration up and running.

       

      2. Provide a known host configuration that would probably simplify your support process. You'd have a lot of people using a consistent platform.

       

      3. Reduce the cost of entry for your hosted products. This will become increasingly important as MS is already aggressively pushing VPC & MSVS at fire-sale prices to their enterprise customers.

       

      Just my 2 cents worth...

      KLC

        • 1. Re: How-To: Build a Thin Host
          bblnews@hotmail.com Enthusiast

          Interesting. You mean a Live CD with Vmware configured?

          Or just a 'how to strip my host the most so Vmware will hava a maximum of resources' ?

           

          I'm thinking you mean something like Knoppix does:

          -boot from a location (network, cdrom, harddisk),

          -setup ramdisk

          -copy over files to ramdisk if needed

           

          -now start Vmware.

           

          Maybe this is something Vmware can do for ACE..create a trial ISO

          • 2. Re: How-To: Build a Thin Host
            JMills Master

            I'm trying to get a KNOPPIX 3.6 EN LiveCD "knx-live-inst" descriptor set built... but mostly just as a proof of concept. Running VMware Workstation ontop of a LiveCD distribution is going to be -glacial- unless you have plenty of RAM to burn.

             

            For accomplishing "Real Work", it would probably be better to approach this using GenToo or something similar installed to local hard disk, and build a descriptor set once you've done some testing and tuning.

            • 3. Re: How-To: Build a Thin Host
              Ken.Cline Champion

              I'm more interested in the Gentoo-like approach. A "live CD" would be an interesting experiment, but as JMills says, glacially slow...

              • 4. Re: How-To: Build a Thin Host
                Anders Expert

                I'm more interested in the Gentoo-like approach. A

                "live CD" would be an interesting experiment, but as

                JMills says, glacially slow...

                 

                Why dont just use Gentoo as your base ?

                A basic Gentoo install is small and you can compile everything from scrach.

                That gives you no uneeded services and you can optimize for you architecture.

                (Gives you some performance to compile with P4 optimizations for instance.)

                And most of all: VMware Workstation is in portage so installation is a breeze:

                 

                emerge vmware-workstation

                 

                \----


                 

                "Maybe this is something Vmware can do for ACE..create a trial ISO"

                 

                Currently ACE will be windows only. I dont see the point of VMware bundling windows, as most people has a license anyway.

                Perhaps it could be doen if they make a linux version,

                but it doesnt seem to be any plans for that.

                 

                \- Anders

                • 5. Re: How-To: Build a Thin Host
                  Ken.Cline Champion

                  I'm more interested in the Gentoo-like approach. A

                  "live CD" would be an interesting experiment, but as

                  JMills says, glacially slow...

                   

                  Why dont just use Gentoo as your base ?

                  A basic Gentoo install is small and you can compile

                  everything from scrach.

                   

                  I view this as targeted at the non-technical user who wants to have a simple way to get up and running with a known-good environment (doesn't even have to build vmtools...)

                   

                  Even if VMware doesn't want to produce/support a distribution, it would be nice to know exactly which modules are REQUIRED...

                  • 6. Re: How-To: Build a Thin Host
                    bblnews@hotmail.com Enthusiast

                    Yes, a Linux live-cd would be nice.

                    I hardly have any Linux experience, so I can't say how large any of the X11 and their desktop clients (KDE/Gnome/etc) is.

                     

                    Anyway, I imagine this as a 512MB up to 1024MB machine, and a small ISO containing:

                    Linux kernel + Knoppix, but only

                    -necessary Debian stuff

                    -X.org

                    -KDE or GNOME (or even more simple window client?)

                    -Vmware installed

                     

                    All in a compressed ISO (Zisofs).

                     

                    Then use the TORAM feature to copy about 200MB to a ramdisk, which would leave you with 300-700MB free space + working RAM.

                     

                    indeed not such a good idea, I guess..lots of RAM required for both diskspace and virtual memory.

                    On 1024MB systems it might be doable

                    (even lower, if you stick to demonstrating Linux or FreeDOS in a virtual machine)

                    • 7. Re: How-To: Build a Thin Host
                      bblnews@hotmail.com Enthusiast

                      ACE for Windows only..how about ReactOS? They have a liveCD!

                      No, just kidding, ReactOS hasn't got a single usefull program running yet.

                       

                      Vmware seems to be too complex to allow to make it into a plugin for the so-called BartPE WinXp-livecd

                      (www.nu2.nu/pebuilder , http://www.911cd.net/forums/ )

                       

                      Is it even possible to run Vmware without all the registry entries that it creates, and without the networking hardware that it installs?