Posted by: Anonymous
on November 03, 2008 11:27 AM
I've been testing Server 2 on a Debian 64bit (Intel quad-core, 8gb RAM, 4TB RAID 5 + Raptor for O/S if it matters) installation running Windows Server 2003 virtual machines.
Have to say I've been extremely impressed. Once the VM drivers are installed on the guest partition the speed is great for our SME load. I use remote desktop to the guest, so don't really care about the poor plugin. Backups are handled by rsync anyway so snapshots are handy, but not essential.
I also never had a problem with ISOs - I just link to my laptops drive or to a file, am I missing something there?
As a consolidation tool, it is invaluable. Sure in the future we will look at ESXi, but for our existing load a correctly backed up VM server does 90% of our tasks (file, print, AD, blackberry server, web server, exchange etc etc), only the SQL server has it's own dedicated hardware. An organised rotation of snapshots and data backups ensures even bare-metal restores are fast and with the cash we have saved, we have a complete backup host ready to go. Next on my list is to work out clustering so the failovers are automatic, but I presume that is an ESXi-only feature.
One downside though - the web admin I agree does need work. I corrupted my first test box by hitting the icon that I thought would refresh the web page but actually rebooted the virtual machines while I was in hte middle of installing SP1 - that button needs a confirmation dialogue!