Though I wasn’t able to attend, the recent VMTN podcast was about the home lab setup. This is an important topic for many people new to virtualization to gain experience as well as people that are advanced in the technology.
There are a number of different ways to go about provisioning a home lab. Here are a few links to what other virtualization personalities are doing:
- Duncan Epping’s home lab (Yellow-Bricks)
- Chad Sakac’s home lab (Virtual Geek)
- Gabrie van Zanten’s home lab (Gabe’s Virtual World)
- Simon Seagrave’s home lab (TechHead.Co.Uk)
- Jason Boche’s lab (Virtualization Evangelist)
- David Davis’ lab (VMware Videos)
Ironically, it isn’t that complicated as the diagram may seem. The most complicated piece is the Untangle gateway that serves as my firewall, internal DNS, DHCP, web content filter, and other network services. The Untangle appliance is on three networks, one of which (vmnic3) doesn’t exist as a physical media.
It looks like this (minus much of the wiring!):
My less than fancy camera couldn’t squeeze it all in, but under the printer is my $300 desktop and beneath that is the ProLiant ML350 server (the little red light is a USB key that is running ESXi). On the desk from left to right is the DroboPro, PC speaker subwoofer, fireproof USB drive and standard USB drive. On the desk is the KVM and console to all physical systems. For my VMware testing, I use the ESX/ESXi as a virtual machine option extensively. Next year, I plan to buy two inexpensive servers to put on the RWVDEV.INTRA network than can give me a little more flexibility for installing things like Hyper-V clusters.
I hope this gives a good picture to what I’m doing in my lab. If you want to get started with a lab for Windows stuff, virtualization stuff or whatever and need advice, send me a note!