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Build to run bunch of VMs

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June 5, 2011 3:00:28 AM

Approximate Purchase Date: 1 month

Budget Range: $1000 to 1200 CAD

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Run VMs to test things. And also use as backup in case the actual server goes down, I can temporarily deploy a VM which can fill in the blank.

Parts Not Required: Monitor + Keyboard + Mouse

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.ca , ncix.com and whatever else you can recommend.

Country of Origin: Canada

Parts Preferences: by brand or type : Which ever will perform well for about 10 VMs running 24/7 i7 or x6?. (i hope thats possible in this budget)

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: No

Monitor Resolution: I'm not sure,

Additional Comments: Any host OS that you can also recommend would be appreciated I'm thinking of running ubuntu as host and then run either virtualbox or vmware player.

Thank you in advance for your help :D 

More about : build run bunch vms

June 5, 2011 3:05:21 AM

Hey Zer0,
Here's my advice. Since you plan to buy in a month, hold off until then. Bulldozer should be out, and since those CPU's are really designed for this kind of stuff, it would be in your best interest to wait.

Sorry for not being more helpful :p  No one wants to hear it, but the truth is it's best to wait.
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June 5, 2011 3:10:19 AM

striker410 said:
Hey Zer0,
Here's my advice. Since you plan to buy in a month, hold off until then. Bulldozer should be out, and since those CPU's are really designed for this kind of stuff, it would be in your best interest to wait.

Sorry for not being more helpful :p  No one wants to hear it, but the truth is it's best to wait.



I've been waiting for bulldozer since..........forever... I heard that they were going to launch it on the 7th of june, and I got all excited, and now i hear they are delaying it until September.

.... Maybe I should wait. :??: 
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October 14, 2011 2:43:28 AM

I am resurrecting this thread in the light of recent news regarding the "Bulldozer", since I still haven't built this baby yet, I would like to ask, is bulldozer the right processor for my need or should i go core i7 2600k? or phenom II x6?

any advice will be greatly appreciated.

Thank you
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October 14, 2011 2:49:35 AM

I think a physical core per VM is ideal , even if each individual core ie weaker .

DB's performance is variable . It does some things very well and at others its not good . But multi threaded and multi VM is where it should shine

FX 8120
ASUS M5A97 motherboard
4 x4 gig of RAM
and a graphics card of your choice
would be my suggestion

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October 14, 2011 3:02:09 AM

Outlander_04 said:
I think a physical core per VM is ideal , even if each individual core ie weaker .

DB's performance is variable . It does some things very well and at others its not good . But multi threaded and multi VM is where it should shine

FX 8120
ASUS M5A97 motherboard
4 x4 gig of RAM
and a graphics card of your choice
would be my suggestion


Thank you very much for reply Outlander_04.
I do lack some understanding of single threaded vs multi threaded, but say if i'm running 8 VM and i assign 1 core to each of the VM, then wouldn't it really become a single threaded system because each VM has a dedicated core?

Thanks
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October 14, 2011 3:10:06 AM

Each VM has its own resources that way .

I am not an expert on the kind of system you are building , but I believe that is the best way to do what you are doing .

Bulldozers strength is the number of cores[ and thus threads] it can run simultaneously . Its weakness is that each thread has less computational power than a sandy bridge processor .
In tasks like gaming BD is not strong because games are only just starting to become highly multithreaded .

But BD seems to be first and foremost a server architecture designed to run many less demanding threads concurrently .
I believe that suits your needs better than VM's sharing resources
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October 15, 2011 12:58:31 AM

I just received the FX 8120 today, the sole purpose of me purchasing this CPU is to build a VM server to host 8 Machines. I will be combining it with the Asus Sabertooth 990FX. At the core speed 3.1GHz its by far the cheapest 8 core CPU at the clock speed. I looked at the Opertons and Xeons but nothing competes with this CPU at 3.1 and 8 Cores.

The more cores the more time each VM receives, enhancing the VM's overall performance. As an Added bonus you can over clock to 4.6GHz on air. This is what I call bang for your bucks.
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October 15, 2011 2:28:32 AM

nceballo said:
I just received the FX 8120 today, the sole purpose of me purchasing this CPU is to build a VM server to host 8 Machines. I will be combining it with the Asus Sabertooth 990FX. At the core speed 3.1GHz its by far the cheapest 8 core CPU at the clock speed. I looked at the Opertons and Xeons but nothing competes with this CPU at 3.1 and 8 Cores.

The more cores the more time each VM receives, enhancing the VM's overall performance. As an Added bonus you can over clock to 4.6GHz on air. This is what I call bang for your bucks.


Thanx for input, I would love to know how your build turns out since i'm looking to build the same thing.
how much memory are you using? what do you plan to use as your OS?

thanx
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October 15, 2011 4:02:35 AM

load up on RAM and CPU
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October 15, 2011 12:00:16 PM

zer0net said:
Thanx for input, I would love to know how your build turns out since i'm looking to build the same thing.
how much memory are you using? what do you plan to use as your OS?

thanx

Here is what I ended up with, all purchased from NewEgg for a total cost of $982.96 :

Antec DF-85 Black ATX Full Tower Computer Case $154.00
ENERMAX Platimax EPM1200EWT 1200W ATX12V $319.00
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 $99.98
ASUS Sabertooth 990FX AM3+ AMD 990FX $189.99
AMD FX-8120 Zambezi 3.1GHz Socket AM3+ $219.99

You will notice that the power supply is by far the most expensive item. You normaly pay a preminum for good reason, I like for my things to last.

I am using this as a dedicated server, so I will be installing either ESXi 4.1 or or Hyper-V which are both free Hypervisors. I will be testing both free Hypervisors and Windows 2008 R2 Ent.

Once I determine which one makes the better use of all the components thay I will stick with that one. The board only supports 32GB of Memory so that is what I have.

Items that I did not need to purchase because i already have them are:

Monitors, NIC, Keyboard, Mouse, CD/DVD,Nework Cables, Case fans, Video Card.

I will let you know what hypervisor and what version I ended up finally using.
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October 15, 2011 1:54:51 PM

PSU is a complete overkill....Good PSU isn't the one with the most watts...I'm also saying yes to AMD FX 8120 as for this job it's better than Sandy Bridge....Also you don't need 990FX chipset motherboard...the only difference between 970 and 990X chipset are the PCI-E lanes..So a value 970 motherboard will save you money without losing anything in terms of perfomance...Finally I suggest a Linux based OS (Not Ubuntu but something serious like Arch Linux)


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October 15, 2011 2:49:00 PM

nceballo said:
Here is what I ended up with, all purchased from NewEgg for a total cost of $982.96 :

Antec DF-85 Black ATX Full Tower Computer Case $154.00
ENERMAX Platimax EPM1200EWT 1200W ATX12V $319.00
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 $99.98
ASUS Sabertooth 990FX AM3+ AMD 990FX $189.99
AMD FX-8120 Zambezi 3.1GHz Socket AM3+ $219.99

You will notice that the power supply is by far the most expensive item. You normaly pay a preminum for good reason, I like for my things to last.

I am using this as a dedicated server, so I will be installing either ESXi 4.1 or or Hyper-V which are both free Hypervisors. I will be testing both free Hypervisors and Windows 2008 R2 Ent.

Once I determine which one makes the better use of all the components thay I will stick with that one. The board only supports 32GB of Memory so that is what I have.

Items that I did not need to purchase because i already have them are:

Monitors, NIC, Keyboard, Mouse, CD/DVD,Nework Cables, Case fans, Video Card.

I will let you know what hypervisor and what version I ended up finally using.



Thanx for reply,
VMware is very picky with the type of hardware you choose. I'm sure you already know about this but here are a couple of good sites that have valuable info regarding ESXi hardware compatibility
http://ultimatewhitebox.com/
http://www.vm-help.com

I was thinking of using virtualbox or vmwareplayer on a host OS like arch linux (as michxymi mentioned) or Lubuntu (lightweight ubuntu, i think its new) that way wont have to deal with the hardware incompatibility issue and wont be limited to hardware choice.

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October 17, 2011 8:36:19 PM

nceballo, How did your build turn out?
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October 21, 2011 1:35:49 AM

Has anyone built any bulldozer VM box? if so please post to let us know how it turned out? and if you think its better to go with Phenom II X6 or Intel i7?
I'm still up in the air regarding bulldozer. I have not read any reviews regarding VMs.

Thank you
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November 3, 2011 1:01:38 AM

zer0net said:
nceballo, How did your build turn out?


Right now I am running bench marks for the disks and SSD drives in RAID 0 and RAID 10. The reason I picked the ASUS SaberTooth 990FX was for the 6 SATA 3 6GB Slots. The JM SATA 3 3GB did not do the SS Drives justice and performance degraded really fast on the SSD Drive.

So I just ordered two Mushkin Enhanced Chronos Deluxe MKNSSDCR120GB drive to be the OS drive in RAID 0. I will use the 2 SATA JM 3GB slots for the back-ups, using two WD 1TB Black Hard Drives Mirrored.

Now I am testing the 4 remaining SATA 3 6GB slots with 4 WD 1TB Black in RAID 10 and with 4 Intel 320 SSD 120GB stand alone and in RAID 10.

ESXi 4.1 barked about no Intel NIC, which I forgot put in the system. I did put W2K8 ENT Hyper V2 with 8 VMs and was pleased very pleased. I will rebuild again with the Intel NIC inside and test Hyper v and ESXi 4.1.

I should have this completed by this weekend and i should know the final hypervisor of choice in two weeks after testing.
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March 2, 2012 10:21:07 AM

Any updates on your setup?
I am getting ready to switch from an i5-2400 to fx 8120 for running many virtualmahines on vmware workstation


it's just my opinion but i think esxi sucks. It is way way way too buggy to difficult to do anything that you could do sooooo easy in windows, like move your machines to another or disk or computer, it takes forever.

if anybody wants i have several intel nics that made my whitebox machiens work with esxi
and yes
i did run it on approved hardware also
buggy buggy
those guys making the big bucks doing esxi
they deserve every penny.
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