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Triple boot VMware and Hyper-V home lab

September 27, 2012

I’m just in the process of turning my home lab into a triple boot lab enabling me to boot between Windows 2008 R2 Hyper-V, Windows 2012 Hyper-V and VMware 5.

It isn’t a very high tech solution, involving hard disk caddies and USB memory keys but so far so good (haven’t installed the 2012 part yet).

First of all I would like to say thanks to Si of the TechHead web site for the information needed to originally start the lab in the first place.  You can check out his blog here.

My lab hardware is as follows:

1 * HP ML110 G5 with 8GB RAM

1 * HP ML110 G4 with 8GB RAM

Both servers have installed a 60GB OCZ Vertex 3 SSD drive (see my previous post here) and an Intel Pro 8492MT dual port gigabit network card.

For storage I have a Synology DS410J (see post here) with 2TB 5,4000 rpm drives for my main storage (music, movies, documents etc) and a single 1TB 7,200 rpm drive for iSCSI and NFS.

I also have a heap of 7,200 rpm drives I can use in the servers via a disk caddy installed within each server (see here).  In the G5 I also have a Raptor 600GB 10,000 rpm hard drive.

For networking I have Cisco by Linksys SLM2008 though the speed is rather slow so I think this will be replaced soon (probably by one of these).

So basically my config is…

1. ESXi installed on USB keys that I can put in the servers when I want to work on VMware (my Raptor drive on server one is a VMFS data store though my second server needs an extra drive installing though it is currently diskless).

2. Windows 2008 R2 installed on SATA drives I can put in the caddy when required.

3. Windows 2012 (to be) installed on SATA drives also that can be put in the caddy.

I have used the SSD drives for VMware Host Cache (see here) but at the moment I have this switched off and the drives are ready for formatting for use with Windows Server/Hyper-V.

It’s still a work in progress but we will see how I get on.

At the moment I am finishing off my MCITP Enterprise Admin on 2008 server (yes I know I have been lazy) and then after this I am contemplating the 2008 R2 Hyper-V MCITP to get into Hyper-V a little (before moving on to 2012 Server) or maybe doing my NetApp NCDA,

Hope you found this post at least mildly informative 🙂


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