I’m following in Chad Sakac’s blogsteps here (and probably many others). Some kind of home lab is needed (and my iMac is not a good starting point).
Chad’s started in 2008 with an update in early 2009. Technology being what it is means modern hardware is a must. I already have Cat 5e installed so the other major components to consider are processors and storage. To be of most value the processors have to be something “industry” standard, as well compatible with as many products as possible…I’m not just thinking about playing with ESX/ESXi, there’s a whole world out there (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_platform_virtual_machines).
Of course that means Intel or AMD. Obvious, yes. But this is IT so it was worth thinking about and justifying for a minute.
Intel have a plethora of processor options for every need. I’m thinking Nehalem from Intel at the moment. Opterons from AMD although I need to do more research on them. Having VT extensions is a must, of course. I started by looking for used HP proliant rack-mount servers on ebay, merely because I was familiar with them. Discussions with colleagues quickly led more to the tower servers and my favorite front runner is:
HP ProLiant ML330 G6 Tower Server
The following site looks like a good place to buy (good price and recommended by friends)
The good thing about this server is that it takes up to 144G internal memory. Nowadays 8G probably won’t be enough. Not that I intend to buy 144G straight off. I’m too scared even to work out the cost of that.
The server above has a E5504 details of which are: http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=40711
So, lets put that on the shopping list for now and turn to storage. Same arguments apply as for processors, it’s got to be something relevant and supported. I don’t think I’m going to be buying a DMX or a Clariion from ebay. The favorite here, again relying on colleagues who proceed me is a home NAS device from Qnap. Product range is http://www.qnap.com/Products.asp. I need to do some more research on that myself.
Running out of time now so signing off for now.