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my company is going to deploy an IT Infrastructure on a virtual platform, can you please help me with the following:

1- which one do you recommend, Cisco Unified computing system ( cisco + emc + vmware )or HP Blades( virtualization solution + HP Storage )?

2- i Need to install a DNS Server, Web server, cpanel for managing hosting packages and Microsoft layer of product for usingg in the corporate infrastructur ( active directory, Local DNS, Exchange server, DHCP, Global catalog ) what is the minimum requirments for these servers ( in terms of CPU and Memory ) .

3- what is the best way to implement a redundant solution in a virtual environment.

thank you

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4 Answers 4

  1. HP blades - we've used both and although the Cisco solution holds enormous potential it was way too 'version 1.0' for us - we are keeping a close eye on it however, the rest of our platform (thousands of ESX hosts) is all on HP kit.

  2. I'd be tempted to build each of these components as individual VMs, most will be very light indeed (~1Ghz, ~512MB-1GB) with only the Exchange and AD requiring more horsepower - certainly I'd be happy running all of these VMs within the resources of a single dual-CPU Xeon 55xx-series server with 12-32GB of memory - you'd have spare cycles/memory in fact.

  3. I'd use VMWare's FT and HA features alongside a good backup policy plus =>2-member clusters for DHCP/DNS/AD services.

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2  
Good set of answers for a maybe-too-vague question. –  mfinni Mar 3 '10 at 16:42

The first question is certainly a valid one, I'm sure plenty of people have had specific experience with one or more of these new virtualization stacks and will have advice to give, pitfalls to avoid etc.

For questions 2 and 3 - I'm sorry to say, but if you're asking these questions, and not even providing things like expected user count, load, etc, I think your best bet is going to be to hire a contractor to help you with this. This is a large project and you're asking for help from the ground up. That's something that people like to be paid to do.

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Personally, I'd strongly advise against using a hardware vendor's virtualization solution. Why get locked in to one more vendor? What happens when they discontinue a product line, or have a crappy product that you just can't live with (hey, it's happened to me).

I'd highly recommend choosing a software virtualization platform (VMware or whatever else) and then buying nodes from whoever you want. If you like HP blades, get them. If you need more capacity in a pinch and want to re-purpose some existing hardware from Dell, Sun, etc. you can do that as needed.

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Dear; for 1 I would say definitely HP because of their honored long history.they have passed decade in developing a robust platform, both H/W and S/W, along with their management tools are fantastic with HP, lately they announced iLO2 which will make your cloud travelling with you even if you go to Moon, you can still shutdown, restart, install OS remotely. but we can't say cisco is bad, they are not alone, they have Intel and VMWare in one alliance, but surely coming few years we will see amazing tech from this allince, till the moment stick with HP

for the the 2, since you are going for cloud, you can tune your VMs, start with 4GB for EX and AD, and 1GB for DNS, DHCP, and FS. you can monitor those VMs. no problem.

redundancy, OK many policies you can follow, simply run multiples of VMs in different physical servers, VMs can be distributed and mirrored, also can be clustered for load share with tools from HP, or thrd pary tools like Polyservmatrix

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