OCAU VMware Virtualisation Group!

Discussion in 'Business & Enterprise Computing' started by NIP007, Apr 16, 2008.

  1. ACA:Sleeper

    ACA:Sleeper Member

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    I'm looking at setting up a SAN/VM environment, but I still have a lot to consider. The idea is to have a Primary SAN attached to a VM ESX server, hosting the most intensive services. Then a Secondary SAN at a relativly remote location, that replicates and stores backups, with a VM server running a few extra services. In the event of a catastrophic failure at the Primary site, the ESX VMs that were replicated to the secondary site, would be brought online there.

    Has anyone got any experince with DataCore's SANmelody software. (Just makes a server into a SAN)

    iSCSI vs FC SANs... is iSCSI mature yet?
    We would be running 2 SANs connected via a dedicated single 10Gb fiber hop, so for me, iSCSI seems ideal, but would a combination of FC on the primary and iSCSI on the DR site be better?

    Also, I was told that the VMs running software initators would kill the performance of the VM Server. Any advice.
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2008
  2. Doc-of-FC

    Doc-of-FC Member

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    damn, that's allot to reply to, but before we go any further on advice and recommendations, what is your available budget, what to you wish to achieve and what is the purpose of these servers (production/development).
     
  3. ACA:Sleeper

    ACA:Sleeper Member

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    I know, lots of questions, not much knowledge, but I'm trying.

    These will be setup for production, and the budget is what I would call entry level. In a pinch, I could maybe rustle up $80k, but realistically anything over $40k is going to require a lot of selling. (Even $40k will require every man and his dog to sign off on the concept)

    I'm happy to go with a freenas box setup as an iSCSI host, with lots of sata drives at the secondary site, for backups. While the concept proves itself worthy.

    The most intense task would be a SQL server hosting 4 databases, not huge traffic though. I could even run it on dedicated hardware, rather than VM, but I really wanted the storage consolidated. That was why someone recommended FC to me. As a total, I'd have 10+ servers to virtualize. Storage is going to be largish.... just raw user data, before we get into software images, ghost images etc is going to be around 5TB, so looking at 10TB capable setup

    Achieve.... A system that will be simple and fast to restore in the event of catastrophic failure, ease of management, reliability, scalability. I want my job to be easier in the future.
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2008
  4. OP
    OP
    NIP007

    NIP007 Member

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    Hi guys,

    I need some urgent assistance! :Pirate: We've P2V'd approximately 10 servers over the past day, we're up to the last one but we've come across a strange problem...

    It's a database server running Windows 2003 Server 64bit Edition and SQL 2005 Enterprise Edition and we're getting the error 'Cannot import 64-bit resources to 32-bit destinations'. The servers are identical and are both 64-bit (we used a spare server which was going into the ESX farm as the DB server as a temporary measure). Any ideas?? :( We're doing cold migrations.

    Cheers :)

    Edit: had an idea.. just checking the bios settings on the server. Will report back! :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2008
  5. fad

    fad Member

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    Install cpuid on the server, and make sure it has the required support needed.

    I found a qc X5365 cpu which didnt have nx bit on. I will also have to look in the bios, we however swapped out the server for another one, which seemed to have the nx bit.
     
  6. OP
    OP
    NIP007

    NIP007 Member

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    Thanks mate :thumbup: Has been sorted, it was just the Intel Virtualisation setting in the bios. All good now. ;)
     
  7. The Watcher

    The Watcher Member

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    - Number of users = About 180
    - Number of offices and location = 7 (VIC, SA, WA, QLD, NSW, NZ, Canada)
    - Number of physical servers before virtualisation. = Not sure we've been running ESX since version 1.5 (earlier i think)
    - Major applications/systems = The Microsoft house of stuff (Dc's, Exchange, SQL, File Servers) Citrix Servers, Application and IIS Servers
    - Reason for virtualisation = Consolidate, Hardware, Rack space, management.
    - Outline of infrastructure.. i.e. servers, SAN, backup procedure etc.
    CX3-40(c) San connected to 2 McData 4400 Fibre Switches (c upgrade in progress)
    6 x ESX 3.5 Box's (Dual FC)
    1 x SQL Server (Single DC (I've got to get this on 2))
    1 x Backup Server (Single FC)
    CX3-10
    4 x ESX 3.5 Boxs
    1 x SQL Server
    MirrorView and Replication Manager to Get data back and forth across 100meg dedicate Fibre.
    Physical hosts are a mix of IBM Box's (x3650's and x366's mainly)

    about 15 other physical hosts around the place.
    DC's at all the remote sites
    Couple of Exchange Servers
    etc
    etc
     
  8. joe_sixpack

    joe_sixpack Member

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    I just ran a headless/remote update of ESX 3.0.1 to 3.5... and very pleased with the results. :D

    Was a very simple process, and worked a treat. I read a bit on the vmware communities forums in regards to using the upgrade.zip vs using the boot CD... The upgrade zip worked well. :thumbup:
     
  9. BADBOYBUBBY

    BADBOYBUBBY Member

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    Hi all how do I get ESX server to send me an alert via email if its having issues

    Thanks
     
  10. Doc-of-FC

    Doc-of-FC Member

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    i just grabbed the 3.5 CD, vmotion'd guests to another ESX host, dropped cd into the server and rebuilt, reconfigured and whollah. then swung the VM's to 3.5 and rebuilt the other server.


    http://www.petri.co.il/configure-vmware-esx-alarms.htm
     
  11. joe_sixpack

    joe_sixpack Member

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    I didn't have the luxury of having physical access to the servers... Though if I did I probably would have used the boot CD too.
     
  12. Doc-of-FC

    Doc-of-FC Member

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    servers located in datacentre XXX KM's away ?

    for me that sounds like a business case to go onsite (and explore that city for a day).

    i'd budget 1 day(8 hours for the first server) + half a day(4 hours) for each server thereafter, assuming 4 servers its only 20 hours, this allows enough time to complete a full rollback plan and if need be enough time to reconfigure anything else. Assuming 10 hour days at full pay + plane flights + accomidation, its not a bad scenario and will probably break even if you were to use a local VMWare contractor.

    if you find that it goes without a hitch and completed in 1 day, great you just scored a paid holiday.
     
  13. BADBOYBUBBY

    BADBOYBUBBY Member

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    Thanks Doc-of-FC :)
     
  14. whoistheg

    whoistheg Member

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    Hi Guys

    quick question

    What backup software are you using to backup you ESX servers?

    All our VM's are on NFS storage so thats not a problem to backup

    But we are running 2 x Sun 4200's with ESX 3.5 Update 1 and just wondering what the best way to back these up is ?

    Also the Suns have 2 x 72gb disks but ESX is only installed onto 1 disk.

    Is there any disk mirroring software built into the ESX so i can mirror the disks.

    You would think being *nix based you could use LVM ?

    any hints/tips
     
  15. lavi

    lavi Member

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    and what's wrong with making your won scripts for consolidated backup? it comes with ESX so why not use it? works very well.

    I wrote a script to copy the vmdk's to a nas then to tape from there, got folders like Mond, Tue, Wed etc. and in each i got PM and AM, i back up every 12 hours

    alot of cut and paste in the script.... i use ntbackup to shoot them to tape and don't cost me anything, commvault guys were trying to tell me their product is superiour etc etc but the cost was astronomical and after a demo they could barely swallow the fact that we did not need them.

    So, Consolidated BAckup > NAS (MSA20 attached to a host) > ntbackup > LTO3 tape drive, only once had to go to tape as i keep a week worth of vmdk's, you can mount a vmdk in windows in like 5 sec flat!
     
  16. joe_sixpack

    joe_sixpack Member

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    That's pretty much how I'm implementing backups at the moment... I was demo'd and quoted for CommVault, but I couldn't see how $20k+ worth of CommVault was justified vs esxRanger and a single Backup Exec server with an LTO3 library...

    I looked at the amount of time it would take me to configure esxRanger and BEWS vs CommVault solution... and I reckon configuring CommVault was going to take nearly as much time as the cheaper alternative.

    Savings approx $16k. :thumbup:

    edit: I should try and work out how to get that $16k moved into my salary... :confused:
     
  17. lavi

    lavi Member

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    me too! oh well when salary review comes up i have a "few" things to print out :)

    CommV have some nice features but in this case none were usefull. And you a right, it's too complex too hard to setup and prone to screw down hte track. A script is just a script clean and simple :) I was actually thinking of writing a wrapper for it

    esx ranger is a bit expensive because its per cpu (core?!?) like a dual quad core would need 8 licenses? that's what i understoon, i quickly took it off my list
     
  18. joe_sixpack

    joe_sixpack Member

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    It's priced per socket... umm.. I think I paid $500 per socket? So $1k for a server with 2x Quad Core Xeon's.
     
  19. lavi

    lavi Member

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    it could be, in the dl380G4 days i had to turn off HT so the 4 licenses would work on a site with 2x esx hosts, otherwise it would complain about not enough licenses
     
  20. coroner

    coroner Member

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    forgive me if i have misread it wrong but are you guys just backing up the vmdk files or are you backing up inside your virtual machines aswell ?


    I thought it was best practise to backup your virtual machines as if they were physical ones...
     

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