morecw
Contributor
Contributor

What form of VMware should I use for my new server?

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Hi all,

I'm going to make the leap from Windows 2008 to Ubuntu 12.04 LTS Server as I did some recent testing and there really is a dramatic improvement in web server response times when hosting on a Linux server.

This server will be a single guest o/s dedicated to hosting OTRS and SugarCRM CE for 10-20 agents/users (plus 5 OTRS customers at any one time). Not an huge demand but still enough to run a little slugish under our current older windows server.

The new production server will be:

Dell Poweredge R300

Quad Core Xeon L5410 (2.33GHZ)

8GB RAM

My question is: Baring in mind this server will be for just one guest, what form of VMware should I run? I imagined I would use Workstation 9 running on Ubuntu desktop and the guest to be Ubuntu server. But someone once I suggested I use ESX/ESXi even if I only use one VM on it as it's easier to back up or migrate to other hardware.

Thanks in advance for any advice.

VMware ESXi 5.1 Guest: Ubuntu Server 12.04
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weinstein5
Immortal
Immortal

The free version is the exact same software that the paid version is - when you apply the free license it will just cap the functionality of the ESXi host and if you decide to get a paid for license you will simply need to apply the license and the features will be opend.

WIth that said you can still remotely manage your hosts and the VMs it is running, take snapshots and backup the VMs with the free version

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weinstein5
Immortal
Immortal

To answer this you will need to understand the difference between ESXi and Workstation - as you know workstation is an application that installs on top of an existing operating system while ESXi install onto the bare metal - so just by design you will get better performance form ESXi -

The question you have to ask - do you want to learn a new environment and platform or stay with something you know - if youw are looking to virtualize other workloads than I would suggest ESXi - but if this the only workload than I would say stay with workstation -

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Bernd_Nowak
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

It depends on a lot, from my point of view.

Like Weinstein5 said, ESXi is a bare metal visualization solution. So there's only a maintenance SSH or local basic menu available. All most be managed through the vSphere client. While the paid ESXi have some great backup possibilities, the free one has some limits. Still there's some scripts possible.

VMware workststation is an application running besides your host os so you can do a lot with the normal OS.


Besides backup and host OS the biggest difference is that in VMware workstation you can easily connect host devices to the guest. In ESXi you are more bound to a more abstracted hardware for your guest OS. In generally you have some network adapters, harddisk, cd/dvd, vCPU and RAM. USB devices can be connected via network.


I love ESXi for server stuff like vpn, web apps, file server, sbs and other server related stuff. Windows terminal server is depending on the needed apps and/or usage. Database servers only when verified with the database developer. If I need to test client and server stuff, like a ticket system with sbs server, I prefer to use VMware workstation.


Hope that gives some help and that I didn't mix up the two Smiley Wink

morecw
Contributor
Contributor

Thanks for your feedback and sorry that I've only now had chance to respond. I take your point about esxi. Having done some other research it seems like the only rational approach to running vmware on a server and keeping the unnecessary resource drains out of the picture. For the guest server I'll install Ubuntu server 12.04LTS.

I'm now trying to decide if the free esxi will suffice for a product environment or I need to look at a paid version. Will running vSphere 5.1 Hypervisor be a limitation on performance of my guest? I do not require more than 8GB, however wouldn't the 1 processor really limit the server's performance?

I would like to be able to remote manage the server, take snapshots, make backups. If I've understood correctly none of this is possible with the free version?

VMware ESXi 5.1 Guest: Ubuntu Server 12.04
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weinstein5
Immortal
Immortal

The free version is the exact same software that the paid version is - when you apply the free license it will just cap the functionality of the ESXi host and if you decide to get a paid for license you will simply need to apply the license and the features will be opend.

WIth that said you can still remotely manage your hosts and the VMs it is running, take snapshots and backup the VMs with the free version

If you find this or any other answer useful please consider awarding points by marking the answer correct or helpful

View solution in original post

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