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I recently bought some "decent" hardware to create myself a home server whose main task should be to serve a NAS to my other computers / tablet / etc. However, I would like to also use the computer as a host for virtualized machines, to create some sort of "home lab" where I can test different settings / os / applications.

I don't have high needs for the virtulization part. However, for the storage, I want something to be a minimum redundant. Maybe a raid, but I don't know... I looked at FreeNas as a solution for the storage, and most the feature I need would be included (upnp, samba, ftp, etc.).

However, would my files really be secure in a raid0 considering freenas would be running under a hypervisor? If I understand correctly, Hypervisor create a file serving as a logical hard drive for the VM. Would I really benefit from a raid0 under this setup?Currently, I have 3 1TB hdd available.

Does anyone have ideas of solutions for my needs?

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closed as off topic by mailq, Shane Madden, Wesley, gravyface, Sven Sep 11 '11 at 0:29

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2 Answers 2

I use VirtualBox running on Fedora 14. The VM drives are simply files that rdiff-backup daily backups (together with other important files) over the network to another computer (or in your case - a spare drive). No RAID, but I feel the system setup and recovery is simpler in this case.

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For virtualizing an OS in windows, VMWare's Workstation is a great tool. You can run as many machines as your computer can handle (depending on if you set each OS to use a certain amount of RAM or processor usage). It supports linux, mac, windows, and solaris all the like (Though it can be tricky installing mac, if you so choose).

Storage wise, you will need: - A RAID controller (can be an internal card like so: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16816318006)

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Running MacOS virtualized is only allowed on Apple hardware. And you don't need a hardware RAID controller. Software raid (i.e. Linux md) can work nicely as well. –  Sven Sep 11 '11 at 0:31
    
I've successfully installed Mac OS on a dell inspiron under VMWARE Workstation. Intel based. –  U4iK_HaZe Sep 11 '11 at 1:19
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Might be, but it's not allowed to do this per the Apple EULA. Therefore, it's not an option on this site. –  Sven Sep 11 '11 at 1:32
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@Sven is right, Apple's EULA only allows OS X to be virtualized on Apple hardware. And md or Windows software RAID, or ZFS in BSD are all very viable alternatives to expensive hardware controllers in a home environment. –  MDMarra Sep 11 '11 at 2:11
    
Gotcha. That makes plenty sense. –  U4iK_HaZe Sep 11 '11 at 4:50

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