We've already run through the process of virtualizing our production servers and now we want to do the same with our dev environment. However, our provider took care of all of the ESX host and cluster configuration (SAN, physical switches, host profiles, etc).
Now we want to virtualize our dev environment using the free ESXi, and I know it "works" out of the box as soon as you install the hypervisor, but I want to try to set it up "right" with some redundancy in place, even if it is a poor man's solution.
So here is what we've got:
- 3 Dell R710 (or similar) servers (one is equipped with 1.3 TB, the other two with 600 GB). We are equipping 1 of them with 36 GB RAM. The other two have 8 GB combined.
- 4 crappier servers of varying abilities
- Two small office server desktops, one with SCSI controller and 600 GB storage
The questions I have:
- Where should I store the data? Locally on the big hard 1.3 TB, or set up a FreeNAS box using one of the small office servers (like the SCSI one)
- Is it OK to rely on 1 ESXi server if there are consistent backups?
- Is there a cheap or free replication solution available?
What strategy do you recommend?