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HP N40L - UnRaid / ESX host


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Im a complete newb so please excuse any silly questions.

I have just brought the HP N40L server.


My intentions:

1) Have it booting via USB to ESX

2) Have the drives mapped via RMD so I dont have to have multiple drives with VMKD files

3) Have a VM setup for Unraid (dont know if this is possible)

4) Host a VM for server core / AD

5) Host a VM for "general downloads programs etc"

6) Other VMs for training courses


I have the standard 250GB hard drive that came with the system - Unused

I have a 3TB Western digital drive - unused

I have a 120GB SSD drive - unused - but will be used to host all the VM instances

I have two 2TB Western digital drives - currently with live data NTFS


I havent had chance to play, and hoping to borrow your guys n girls guidance.

When I add a drive via ESX / RMD -- will it force a wipe of the data on the drive?

Is there a drive order preference I should use?  I plan on having some parity drive ... can I use this with my config as it is now?  I plan on adding bigger drives when the prices come down again.

If ESX doesnt wipe the data -- can unraid then read any existing data (ie NTFS and convert on the fly to unraid fs?)

if I replace one of the ESX RMD drives, with a larger one or add a new blank drive... will unraid / ESX be happy?  Will I loose data?


Is there anything else I need to look out for?

Or does anyone have any other suggestions?


Appreciate any help.

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I think all of your question to this are answered here: http://www.techhead.co.uk/new-hp-proliant-microserver-a-decent-vsphere-lab-server-candidate


While it is about the previous version, it is still pretty much the same box with minimal CPU upgrade.

It looks like the microserver is esxi compliant (no VT-d though).


You would have to up the ram to Max and keep in mind that it is just a dual core net book style CPU.


you could easily tax it running to much. thus crippling all Guests at once.



the HP Proliant MicroServer should be able to run vSphere ok, though the most glaringly obvious question in all of this is the dual 1.3Ghz CPU Cores up to the job of supporting and running an average vSphere lab environment?


Well, of course the answer to this is… it depends.  As no doubt all of you who run a production or lab VMware vSphere environment will in most cases confirm the amount of CPU utilisation is generally quite low with memory being the first ESX/ESXi host physical resource being consumed, meaning that a lowly utilised vSphere lab environment with 4-5 VMs would probably be ok running on the MicroServer in most instances.  Though increase the workloads of the VMs running on the server and the CPU performance could quickly change for the worse.


I don't think i would personally use it for my production server, just as a test box. I guess the best way to find out is to try it.


As far as ESXi and unRAID and RMD drives, you have to do the extra step of RMD'ing each drive one at a time and for every upgrade. unRAID just sees it as a drive. if there was data already on it it "should" just pass that data through with whatever data is on it.


(Example) i moved an RMD drive with WHS on it to a new ESXi box, setup the RMD and powered on the VM. It booted to WHS that was already on the drive just fine.

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