VMware vSphere 4 and 5 Labs – Foundations – The different kinds…

To Build a lab:

I have been thinking a lot about how there seems to be a few gaps in the VMware community when it comes to learning to set up a VMware vSphere lab environment. So I thought I would take the time to try and put together a full on post dedicated to resources on building a VMware Lab. When I first thought about this I wasn’t sure if I wanted to do a full A-Z build. Covering every single feature or deployment, but often times I would rather not re-invent the wheel. There are MANY post covering how to do this in general but I wanted to make a point of identifying the types of labs that you can set up and how to exactly go about it as well. The key word is “lab” so you don’t want to spend a ton of money (unless you have it) on your lab. To start off there are a multitude of setups you can do and many ways you can do it. I also want to stress that if you are getting ready for your test then YOU need to have one of these labs.

vSphere Lab video 2 Cents and quick overview! (this is my fist video post)

Nested VMware vSphere Lab

  1. Hosted on a Desktop Virtualization Product Like VMware Workstation 7 or 8
  2. Allows for easy HCL compliance
  3. Does require a robust desktop
  4. Can get slow depending on what you’re doing (design)
  5. Networking is all virtualized (plus)
  6. Storage can be virtualized or something like iSCSI can be used
  7. Mobility (can move VM’s around between desktops and laptops)

Physical VMware vSphere Lab

  1. Runs ESXi as bare metal
  2. Is more expensive
  3. “Real World” set up so is truly a lab
  4. Must meet HCL
  5. Will need Physical Networking (Managed networking highly recommended)
  6. Takes longer to build out or rebuild
  7. Can run nested labs on top of ESXi (pretty much using ESXi in the way you would use VMware Workstation)
  8. Storage can be virtualized or something like iSCSI can be used
  9. Can move hosted VM’s but the physical systems are not portable/mobile (depends I guess)

In a nutshell I will be covering the nested set-up since that seems to be the less expensive rig. I also love the fact that I can move it around to my laptop and desktop which is quite handy. Also fairly easy to backup as well.

***Disclaimer: The thoughts and views expressed on and Chad King in no way reflect the views or thoughts of his employer or any other views of a company. These are his personal opinions which are formed on his own. Also, products improve over time and some things maybe out of date. Please feel free to contact us and request an update and we will be happy to assist. Thanks!~


About Chad King

I am an IT professional working in the industry for over 10 years. Starting in Microsoft Administration and Solutions I was also a free lance consultant for small businesses. Since I first saw virtualization I have always been fascinated by the concept. I currently specialize in VMware technology. I consult daily on many different types of VMware Solutions. I have experience in all domains related to virtualization and cloud solutions. From help desk, administration, engineering, implementation, and design allowing me to provide creative solutions with the understanding and gaps at all levels.

Posted on February 11, 2012, in Troubleshooting, vSphere 4, vSphere 5 and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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