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I have a relatively old Supermicro Superserver 6015v-m3 with a x7dvl-3 motherboard, checking compatibility on vmware website, is compatible only with esxi 3.1

I ignored and tried installing esxi 5.5, and the installation ran smoothly with no issues, I imported a couple of vm I had on another server, and they work flawlessly.

Am I crazy planning to use the server in production? Installing esxi 5.5 on unsupported hardware is really a no-no, or vmware is particularly picky and I should feel comfortable?

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    Am I crazy planning to use the server in production? I don't want to say yes... but yes.
    – Wesley
    Dec 10, 2013 at 21:18
  • I guess what you define as "production" - if it's going to have anything related to real company data that if they lose the data they will lose money, then yes. But that's mainly because of the age and specs of the server rather than your choice of OS. Dec 10, 2013 at 21:18
  • I replaced hard drives and cpu fans, upgraded ram to 16gb. And the purpose of installing esxi should be to actually use the virtual machines in a cluster pool, with virtual machines on another server for redundancy. Am I still crazy? Dec 10, 2013 at 21:24
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    Is it important? It may run well today, but will it run well in a month when you start having actual users on it? Unsupported hardware could cause mysterious failures that, in part, result in your company getting very bad press for months on end, the project failing, and you going out of business in the worst case. All of these have happened in the past, and all of these will happen again... Dec 10, 2013 at 23:32
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    @MartinoDino - clearly you haven't been bitten by the likely consequences of this. For your own home stuff, or work lab: whatever, go nuts. When it's your employer's operations (and likely revenue) on the line, you will tend to go with things that are supported by your vendors. Or have an unpleasant conversation about why you didn't.
    – mfinni
    Dec 11, 2013 at 1:14

2 Answers 2

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Am I crazy planning to use the server in production?

In production? Yes. You are absolutely, 110% without-a-doubt out of your mind.
Let me give you a delightful automotive analogy:

You go to Porsche and buying a brand new roadster.
Before you drive off the lot the dealer tells you "Use only premium unleaded automotive gasoline. Anything else is not supported".
You pull up to your local gas station and put diesel in the tank.
Your new Porsche's engine self-destructs on the freeway.

When you call your Porsche dealer what do you think they're going to tell you?
VMWare will tell you the exact same thing if anything goes even the slightest bit wrong with your production system that is built on unsupported hardware.


For a development environment (something you don't care about and can afford to have down for extended periods of time) - sure, go ahead and use this unsupported hardware.
When (not if) something goes wrong you're not going to be too hard up because of it. Maybe a software release slips a few days, but we're not talking customer-facing outages.

(To continue our automotive analogy: That's like running used cooking oil in an early 1980s Diesel Mercedes Benz - not recommended, but the thing is a tank and you probably don't care if you have to overhaul the engine because a stray french fry got sucked into the injection system).

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  • Love car analogies Dec 10, 2013 at 21:22
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    Love running diesel in high-compression gasoline engines. (The failure modes are quite spectacular!)
    – voretaq7
    Dec 10, 2013 at 21:23
  • I understand your point, but then I would turn to Microsoft because I have licenses of Windows 2012 R2 and the server is supported. Just I liked the idea of using vmware more because I am new to Hyper-V. Dec 10, 2013 at 21:34
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    @MaxFavilli That (switching to Hyper-V) would be the correct thing to do if you intend to use this hardware in production. As professionals we don't deploy solutions that involve doing things the vendor (in this case VMWare) has said not to do. If you want to use this hardware in production then think of this as a good opportunity to learn Hyper-V.
    – voretaq7
    Dec 10, 2013 at 21:40
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If you have central storage and are using it in a cluster or are at least using vSphere Data Protection or some other backup I think you will be fine.

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