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Windows Thread, What server to virtualize? in Technical; Hi all, I'm trying to consolidate our servers and trying to virtualize some server in our inventory to lessen some ...
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    What server to virtualize?

    Hi all, I'm trying to consolidate our servers and trying to virtualize some server in our inventory to lessen some expenses and servers to the servers room. And I have no idea on what servers to virtualize.


    Is it ok to virtualize:

    1. DHCP server
    2. Application server
    3. Web server
    4. Antivirus server
    5.Domain Controller
    6. Proxy server

    Is it ok if this servers will be virtualized in just one physical server?
    And are there any server in the list that cannot be virtualize because of performance issue?


    Really need your help. Thanks.

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    ful56_uk's Avatar
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    All of our servers run on esx and we haven't had any slow downs reported to us. It all depends on the spec of the network and host really

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    Dos_Box's Avatar
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    I would be a bit cautious runnning a domain controller and network services on a virtual platform, as these are areas the (IMHO) I would want instantly available without relying on an extra layer to bring them to life. Not to say it isn't done, just that I wouldn't do it!
    Before I quit to run EduGeek full time I had the following servers virtualised on our SAN running off Microsoft Virtual Server:

    Sophos
    WSUS
    KS3 Testing
    Secondary DNS\Domain services (I know there are no BDCs anymore, but the non of my virtualised servers held primary FSMO roles)

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    ful56_uk's Avatar
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    Yeah same as us. 2 sans one sas for the vm machines one sata for data storage. 2 sans are connect within the San network with 2 switches for redunancy. Then four hosts. Only thing stored in the host is esx and a partition for iso files. The only server we don't run as a vm is the ts boxes and the vm management server for backups. Like you say some people don't make there dc's as vm.

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    MACIT's Avatar
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    Well speaking out here we run our entire infrastructure on esx bare metal and cannot fault it. I can see the argument for not virtualising dc's but the advantages (instant restore if it all goes to hell, Ability to move an os off a host if needed, snapshoting) out weighs it in my view.

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    Theblacksheep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by meki71 View Post
    Hi all, I'm trying to consolidate our servers and trying to virtualize some server in our inventory to lessen some expenses and servers to the servers room. And I have no idea on what servers to virtualize.


    Is it ok to virtualize:

    1. DHCP server
    2. Application server
    3. Web server
    4. Antivirus server
    5.Domain Controller
    6. Proxy server

    Is it ok if this servers will be virtualized in just one physical server?
    And are there any server in the list that cannot be virtualize because of performance issue?


    Really need your help. Thanks.
    at the least I'd leave the AV as physical....

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    dirtydog's Avatar
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    we're about to virtualise a few more but our new physical DC has just been ordered

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    You might also wish to consider failover - if the physical host dies, you lose all of those services at once. While it might not be a probem for some services, it could cause problems for the entire network if the DHCP server vanishes . . . .

    As with Dos_Box, I am not saying "don't do it", just saying "think about the day it all goes wrong". Because my friend, that day will come :-)

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    cookie_monster's Avatar
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    We run all of those services except DHCP on Xenserver, we have three DC's one the FSMO role holder is on a good quality HP physical box. No particular reason that we decided not to run DHCP virtual it just happens to be the physical box.
    We also have two virtual Citrix boxes now.

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Personally, if I was in the same situation, I'd virtualise all of them.

    But I'd only do it if we have high availability failover between multiple physical hosts and redundant SANs to host it all on.

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    Quote Originally Posted by meki71 View Post
    Hi all, I'm trying to consolidate our servers and trying to virtualize some server in our inventory to lessen some expenses and servers to the servers room. And I have no idea on what servers to virtualize.


    Is it ok to virtualize:

    1. DHCP server
    2. Application server
    3. Web server
    4. Antivirus server
    5.Domain Controller
    6. Proxy server

    Is it ok if this servers will be virtualized in just one physical server?
    And are there any server in the list that cannot be virtualize because of performance issue?


    Really need your help. Thanks.
    I would happily go virtual on all that lot but leaving a backup DC outside but I would look at more than one host. if you put all your servers onto one host and it goes pop for any reason then you're screwed

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    p858snake's Avatar
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    If you virtualize your Domain Controller, just make sure the operating system running/managing your virtual machines isn't joined to the domain.

    I remember reading somewhere (on here if I remember correctly) that someone did it and all worked fine till the physical server(/s) lost power and needed to be restarted....

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    rh91uk's Avatar
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    We have virtualised the lot here - exchange servers, DC's etc. If you plan it well and have space for redundancy then you should be fine!

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    cookie_monster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    Personally, if I was in the same situation, I'd virtualise all of them.

    But I'd only do it if we have high availability failover between multiple physical hosts and redundant SANs to host it all on.

    Budget is always a limiting factor we (IT and SMT) made the decision that a days downtime was preferable to tens of thousands of pounds of extra hardware so all of our kit is on next business day replacement. Our setup was recently tested when someone cut the power over a weekend and the UPS eventually failed, having the physical DC was a god send as we keep network documentation on there but it also allowed us to get DHCP, DNS and internet running while we figured out why the SAN wouldn't come back on (this could of been an issue even with a redundent SAN) we could also test AD integrity before powering up the other DC's. Our support company recommended that we do it this way for this reason and it helped in my opinion, it's also very little extra cost and DC's are easy to migrate when it come to hardware replacement time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtydog View Post
    we're about to virtualise a few more but our new physical DC has just been ordered
    there's nothing stopping your virtualising that box a few months/years down the line and having it as an extra host for your vm's

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