What OS's, Appliances, and other Software do you run on your VM Servers?

IceDigger

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Weather you use your VM for work or just playing around and having fun with it. What OS, appliances, etc... do you have running on your servers?

Mine is just for work right now and just hosts my Simple Help remote server. I have been running it on an older C2D 8500 desktop for years on a big old dell workstation. Yay for consolidation. Also went from using the server from windows vista (don't laugh) to linux lite 4.4 and worked like a charm since they have a linux based edition of the software. So easy to configure too.

Not sure where else to go from here. I have 10x 2.5" 900GB SAS drives I can throw in it, and also 2x 2.5" 1TB 7.2k I can use also. SAS or bust as usual for this old machine!
 

Space_Ranger

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For my home lab:
  • I am running pfSense for my firewall/router.
  • I've got one running Ubuntu 18.04 LTS for my UNIFI Controller (to manage WiFi for the house)
  • Another Ubuntu 18.04 server for my kids Minecraft servers
  • Other test VMs mainly for when I'm testing crap for work.
Simple Help looks nice! If I get back into the Consulting business I would think of going down that road for remote support. For the price it seems neat!
 

IceDigger

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Hmmm never thought of that. Hosting game servers on it. Should handle stuff no problem I'm guessing.
 

David_Schroth

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Hmmm never thought of that. Hosting game servers on it. Should handle stuff no problem I'm guessing.
I've been running into issues with game servers where they are not multi-threaded, specifically, MineCraft and Space Engineers. I've got plenty of cores, but with an all core turbo around 2.1GHz, it chokes on single threaded game servers..
 

Space_Ranger

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I've been running into issues with game servers where they are not multi-threaded, specifically, MineCraft and Space Engineers. I've got plenty of cores, but with an all core turbo around 2.1GHz, it chokes on single threaded game servers..
While for modded Minecraft that is very true, my kids are vanilla junkies and running Vanilla MC on it isn't too taxing..
 
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I run proxmox at the moment, but probably switching to docker of sorts. I have one Minecraft container running bungee with mutliple worlds (about 10 running in total that you can get to via the lobby) with all different mods. I have a separate one setup for pixel Mon (Pokemon for Minecraft that the kids like). I have a Plex server with a quad TV capture that I use for DVR and movies. Have one setup for some of my programing for testing (node js, sql, etc). NAS (sba). Looking into adding an ldap server and maybe a few other things.
 

Grimlakin

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For ours we run pretty much all of our application servers and DC's and even Avaya phone servers in a virtual environment. The only thing we are 100% physical on are the network and the SQL machine because those are multi threaded to a large degree and the licensing to do those virtually is crazy high.
 
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It's all work stuff, cause sadly since I got into IT for work I've become a total lazy ass consumer at home... But anyway:
I run a couple openvpn appliances in failover, a couple dedicated DCs, a file/print server, SQL server...

Which makes me wonder about an above posters comment. Is there something I missed with running Microsoft SQL server in a VM? Should I consider making this a physical deal?
 

Space_Ranger

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It's all work stuff, cause sadly since I got into IT for work I've become a total lazy ass consumer at home... But anyway:
I run a couple openvpn appliances in failover, a couple dedicated DCs, a file/print server, SQL server...

Which makes me wonder about an above posters comment. Is there something I missed with running Microsoft SQL server in a VM? Should I consider making this a physical deal?
Not that I'm aware of. I prefer running my SQL Servers as a VM, even if it's the only VM on the box. This way I can take advantage of migrating the VM to another host in the case of a hardware failure. While the new home won't be optimal, I'll be able to get the server back up and running quicker.
 
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Cool thanks. And I agree.. My life has been so much better when emergencies strike since I virtualized everything. Hyper-v replication is also pretty spiffy for this. Had as little as 30 minutes downtime during my last hardware failure.
 

Grimlakin

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Cool thanks. And I agree.. My life has been so much better when emergencies strike since I virtualized everything. Hyper-v replication is also pretty spiffy for this. Had as little as 30 minutes downtime during my last hardware failure.
For the critical nature of our servers we effectively run all of our environments in quadruple redundancy. And hope we never need to count on it though we exercise it twice a month.

But if SQL Enterprise core licensing works like MS OS licensing (as our licensing department has alluded to.) that means if we pick a 5 cluster host. (Keep in mind out base SQL server is 32 core 64 thread with 384 gig of ram. A rather hefty VM.) Without VM to host preferences set we would have to license for 5 times the number of cores. Meaning a 64 thread (64 virtual cpu vm) would mean we needed to license 320 cores for SQL enterprise.

So it's a damn expensive proposition. Plus our servers are large enough it doesn't make sense to make them guests.

They do run on the same all flash array's as the ESXi hosts just with a separate slice of the storage and their own dedicated fiber connections.


EDIT: Doing some google research seems to suggest that you license the cores assigned to the VM itself that is the host (if small enough) Then you also get software assurance licensing. Meaning if you want to have a virtual edition of SQL on a 20 core host and have it be able to migrate with no additional licensing fee you also need software assurance. Of course the actual cost of this is who knows.... as it is negotiated on a contract by contract basis.
 
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Space_Ranger

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We aren't "Enterprise" in the slightest.. We're large, but we're not that large where we need all that power... We're not running clusters, just a single 32 thread, 128GB SQL Server VM Instance on its own box. I can always scale down the threads and RAM if I need it migrated off its server to another host.
 

Grimlakin

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That is some impressive shit.
Oh man don't get me started. The DBA team was going nuts with licensing where it became MORE cost effective to put in a pair of massive SQL servers. I'm talking 4 22 core CPU's and 2 TB of ram. Doing that and moving all of the assorted databases to that pair of servers (using SQL/Windows clustering) saved the company over a million dollars in SQL Enterprise licensing costs.

But DAMN that's some huge iron and too many eggs in one basket for me. Thankfully our critical systems are on their own hardware and not in the cloud either. Our work is EXTREMELY latency sensitive. What cloud vendors would deem 'edge compute'.

So if you ever want to make your cloud vendors calling you to sell you service ask them if they can guarantee sub 70ms latency at all times.
 

Space_Ranger

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I work for a non-profit holistic "resort". I despise the "cloud" with a passion. Our company is in the sticks, and getting "reliable" network connectivity to us is a challenge an a half. We paid over $25k to have a cable company build-out to our location (Verizon wanted close to 150K for a Fiber run). Verizon has abandoned their copper infrastructure, and we can't even get reliable T1's anymore. Cable is all we have (With Satellite as an emergency fail-over).

Everyone in the organization has bought into the "cloud" and wants it so badly (Google Docs, Amazon AWS, Azure). I caved and said to them, "Ok.. Go ahead and start using Google's services". 1 month later, lo and behold our cable goes out due to a heavy storm coming through the area. I am then pestered as to why it takes FOREVER for any of their Google Docs to load for a meeting their were having with some vendors. One of my co-workers says to me, "Why is it so slow??". I respond, "You remember that we lost Cable yesterday?? Well, where do you think your Google Doc resides?? It's not in my server room!" It was at that moment when the light-bulb went off in her head and she's all "Ohhhhh.. We're on the Satellite connection, nevermind!" She got it. She understood that anything "Cloud" based is great for having you data available anywhere, but that anywhere better have a solid internet connection!
 

Grimlakin

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I work for a non-profit holistic "resort". I despise the "cloud" with a passion. Our company is in the sticks, and getting "reliable" network connectivity to us is a challenge an a half. We paid over $25k to have a cable company build-out to our location (Verizon wanted close to 150K for a Fiber run). Verizon has abandoned their copper infrastructure, and we can't even get reliable T1's anymore. Cable is all we have (With Satellite as an emergency fail-over).

Everyone in the organization has bought into the "cloud" and wants it so badly (Google Docs, Amazon AWS, Azure). I caved and said to them, "Ok.. Go ahead and start using Google's services". 1 month later, lo and behold our cable goes out due to a heavy storm coming through the area. I am then pestered as to why it takes FOREVER for any of their Google Docs to load for a meeting their were having with some vendors. One of my co-workers says to me, "Why is it so slow??". I respond, "You remember that we lost Cable yesterday?? Well, where do you think your Google Doc resides?? It's not in my server room!" It was at that moment when the light-bulb went off in her head and she's all "Ohhhhh.. We're on the Satellite connection, nevermind!" She got it. She understood that anything "Cloud" based is great for having you data available anywhere, but that anywhere better have a solid internet connection!
I kind of like Office 365 for this. You have local copies of all of your applications and documents. But can also access them via the one drive.

Of course I wold NEVER want this for anything critical or with sensitive data. I'm paranoid about sensitive data in the cloud. We've already seen too many breeches and since the cloud companies are all being interconnected by 3rd parties... it's only a matter of time before we see something breach all of the big cloud companies at once.
 
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