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ESXi resources for Win 2008 Server

ESXi resources for Win 2008 Server

ESXi resources for Win 2008 Server

Hi there,

I will be installing Windows 2008 server as a Virtual Machine on ESXi 4.1 U1. What resources from the server should I reserve? Number of cores, Ram amd Hard drive space? I will be installing win 2008 for basic tasks only, DHCP etc.



RE: ESXi resources for Win 2008 Server

That's an open ended question, so I can only really give you open ended answers.

I would suggest you allow the VM to just run in your environment, monitor it and track the resource usage.  If the performance of the machine falls below acceptable operation, then base your reserve on the minimum the machine needs to provide the services you run.  You will be able to determine this based on a weeks worth of operation and what you find in the performance logs. Do keep in mind, a reserve will take resources out of the pool.  So if you reserve 3GHz/4GB, and the machine only uses 500MHz/1.2GB in peak hours, you have basically removed 2.5GHz/2.8GB from the shared resource pool of the other VM's in your environment.

I my self always start out with a single virtual CPU, add more cores only if I actually need it.  Memory, start of with 2GB.  I then increase it if more is needed, or decrease it if I find the VM never uses it.  HDD, I like to start with 40GB for a boot disk, data disk depends on what the VM is doing.  40GB may sound a bit big for a VM, but it comes in handy for updates and app install to have the extra wiggle room.

Brent Schmidt                    Senior Network Engineer
Keep IT Simple http://www.kiscc.com  
Novell Platinum Partner          Microsoft Gold Partner
VMWare Enterprise Partner    Citrix Gold Partner

RE: ESXi resources for Win 2008 Server

I always look at Server 2000 as an example for giving a little more disk space. Everyone created 10 gig partitions for Server 2000 because it only took like 3 gigs to install (or less) but add 4 service packs and about 37,000  updates and it filled 10 gigs pretty quickly. Disk space is fairly cheap these days so 40 gigs is reasonable for a modern OS drive. If you are running a fibre channel SAN, I might dial down a little, maybe 30 gigs for a 32 bit OS, (I'd still do 40 gigs for 64 bit) that can be some expensive disk.

As far as other resources, it is far easier to add them if performance is poor than it is to take them away if they aren't being used. I am with Provogeek, start with 2 gigs of RAM and 1 vCPU and increase if you need to. If you were going to run SQL or Exchange I would probably double the RAM and depending on the size of the infrastructure double the CPU. But, only you know your network.

Good luck!


The answer is always "PEBKAC!"

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