Delayed action!

It’s been a few days since the last update and that’s for a few reasons. First of all over the weekend I had see through a previous commitment by attending a Rugby 7s tournament down in Exeter – Castle Cary Kay’s 7s which was “interesting” to say the least. Suffice to say I didn’t get too much study and testing done.It’s already hard to concentrate on study when the Isle of Man TT is on so I’m trying my best to block out those demons.

I do have to mention though I was totally gutted to hear that Karl Harris died yesterday doing what he loved so my thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends at this terrible time may he forever have the throttle pinned up in the sky.

In addition to my extra curricular activities, I’ve been been nailing the lab with a nested HyperV deployment using Server 2012R2 and system centre 2012r2 (with VMM and DPM). The exam is tomorrow so I’m hoping that I’m ready but we’ll see in the afternoon!

As much as it pains me to say it I do actually like the HyperV offering now and can see why some people are going over it (other than perceived price). It’s easy to set up and has some pretty cool features in storage spaces and tiering. I still don’t think it offers as much features as VMware do but then again, who can honestly say they use the entire lot anyway? For most companies what HyperV offers should suffice to meet their needs but that’s my own opinion and I’ve no doubt people with have their own and rightly so.

I must say though that all the VMs I’ve deployed into the vSAN are performing very well so far and responding to IO requests quickly and thus giving me a good experience. I’m going to start running into CPU and RAM issues before long so need to think of possibly scaling up to a three node cluster or seriously consider getting larger servers with more RAM and CPU core counts. The bank balance however says no for now so will need to make do for now.

With a small update to the lab I’ve had a few issues with various storage devices going down. It appears that the “suspect” hard drives I mention are living up to their name and causing mirrors to break and other erroneous error messages in FreeNAS. Therefore I’ve had to revert to the vSAN entirely until I can get my paws on the QNAP device from the donor who sadly was having health issues at the time of pick-up and had to cancel. (Get well soon btw Adam). I’ve already had a near scare with my WD livebook with all my personal data on there going offline so recovered it and gave myself a bollocking for trusting in it. So needless to say I’ve got a few more backups now of key data on my network!

The lab now has full DHCP services, DNS and now a new shiny Domain with two DCs. Next I need to look at the steps require to get the vCenter and hosts into the domain with out making a major booboo and killing the environment. This will be good practice for the VCAP so actually looking forward to this. Just need to set up users/groups in AD first and think about how I want the OU structure to look.

Another headache I’m having is to do with networking. I’m not a networky kinda guy. Never have and was about to say never will, but I do need to get there for intended destination requires  me to have this skill up to a point. At the moment I’m on a flat network a typical and was thinking about making the network in to a more typical company topology and introducing VLANs using my Cisco SG300 switch. The hosts each have 3 nics – one onboard and one dual port. Combine this with the FreeNAS port, PC, WD Drive and the router I’m running thin on the ground for ports as I’ve only 10 1GBe on the switch.

Initially I was thinking about using the bog standard Netgear switch and placing one of the host NICs on to this but I can’t as I intended to use VLANs and this switch doesn’t support it. What I was aiming to achieve is some level of switch redundancy so I test failovers etc etc. I think I either have to get another layer 3 switch or get a larger 24 port switch I’m sure will be very quiet…not.

So in summary:

Need to buy another switch
Need to cough up for more new internal SATA drives for the freeNAS server
Look for another HP N40L and 16GB RAM to add to the cluster
Aquire NFR for VEEAM Backup and Recovery and install/test

That’s about it for now. Need to get back on the HyperV study but next time I want to convey some thoughts about certain emerging technologies which I’m excited about.

Comme Je Fus




IT virtualisation professional since 2002 after serving 7 years in the British Army as a REME Corporal. Currently a Solutions Architect. I'm a dedicated husband, motorcyclist, proud father and owner of two beautiful border collies Monty and Mitch. Hobbies are: Motorcycles - Isle of Man TT/Road races and MotoGP/BSB/WSB Rugby Union Skiing DCS Flight Simulator -A10A/C and SU25 Frogfoot specialist Airsoft - Closer Quarter Battle

Posted in Operation Genesis, Operation Grandslam

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