Home infrastructure and MSDN Premium

I’m always trying to consolidate and simplify my home network where I have maximum functionality for the lowest cost and lowest fuss. Currently, I have two relatively cheapy Dell dual-core machines with 4GB running Win2K3 server (32-bit) – and they each host a virtual machine. Also, I have ~6TB of space that is mirrored (via Synctoy, believe it or not) where each physical server has it’s own 3TB array so I have real-time failover. The physical servers represent my main active directory at home. The virtual servers are primary and backup for an additional project-specific active directory I have.
My main workstation is a 2 processor Xeon dual-core 64-bit 2.0GHz, with 8GB of RAM. I run Vista Ultimate 64-bit and have a few regular virtual PC’s that I mess with on that – for development. Lastly, I also have a Dell laptop which is a dual-core/64-bit and 4GB that I use to do development from the living room or offsite.
With all that said – today, I finally got my welcome kit in for MSDN Premium (I joined the Empower ISV program) – and I now would like to have maybe just one physical server, and virtualize everything else! Licensing-wise (if I’m reading correctly) – I have one license (and 5 CALs) for Windows Server 2008 Enterprise or Standard. Then, that includes 4 Virtualization licenses (with Enterprise edition). Which means I can use the same license for up to 4 additional virtual servers on that physical server.
So I think I am going to take my 2 processor Xeon dual core machine with 8GB of RAM, make that my one server, virtualize a backup domain controller – get rid of the other VM’s (because I don’t need them anymore anyhow) – then dump my two existing "servers" on EBay. Since I have a KVM (type) switch for my desktop anyhow, it’s not a big deal for me to just use my laptop as my primary PC – and take it on the go when I need it.
So this leaves me with one workstation/laptop (it’s a Dell 1720 – which is a desktop replacement anyhow – lots of USB and Firewire; 64-bit; decent amount of RAM) – and one decent server running 2008 and a virtualized backup running 2008!
Well, that’s the plan at least. I’m installing a scratch version of Win2K8 on a VPC on my desktop right now to make sure I understand the Hyper-V stuff (assuming it will run under virtualization) and make sure there’s no other issues I’m missing. I might hold off on more blog posts for the next couple of days until I get all of this hashed out – wish me luck!
Posted in Computers and Internet, Uncategorized

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