Building your own lab



  • @gjacobse said in Building your own lab:

    @scottalanmiller said in Building your own lab:

    @gjacobse said in Building your own lab:

    Not to be a downer - in these times- who has an extra $1,300? I sincerely hope that all have kept their employment as I have - $1,300 will go a long way in repairs on a vehicle I can’t afford to replace.

    Having a home lab is a great tool but just doesn’t seem practical to invest in right now.

    It's always good to invest. In fact, investing when times are tough often leads to the lowest investment cost and the highest returns. Holding back investments due to uncertainty is often a cause for the greatest losses.

    It is specifically because times are uncertain that embracing growth and preparing to be as ready as possible for the job market matters more than normal.

    I can understand this principle, however tell that to my mechanic.

    Truck needs a new power steering pump and a boat load of other things. Price paid for having to drive for work and having a fifteen year old vehicle.

    Right, maybe time to invest in a more cost effective vehicle.



  • @Pete-S said in Building your own lab:

    @VoIP_n00b said in Building your own lab:

    Enjoy your $500+ power bill

    Depends on what you pay per kWh and what you put in the nodes.

    We have similar servers at work and they draw about 55W per node with VMs running but almost no load. I think that would be a typical power profile in a lab setup.

    So let's say 250W for four servers. That's 6 kWh per day and 180 kWh per month. If you pay 14 cents per kWh that's $25 per month in electricity.

    And if you have it at home maybe you don't need all nodes running all the time.

    Right, you can easily use just two, but get the experience of the hardware.



  • @scottalanmiller said in Building your own lab:

    @openit said in Building your own lab:

    Why there are only two power supplies for 4 nodes?

    Because that's where the big savings come from - not needing eight power supplies to get redundancy, you only need two. That reduces power consumption and cost and space, dramatically. If it wasn't for the shared power and chassis, blades would have no purpose to exist.

    Yes, it's better use of resources.

    The power supplies are also more effective and have less power loss than individual servers because they operate at a higher current.



  • @Pete-S said in Building your own lab:

    @scottalanmiller said in Building your own lab:

    @openit said in Building your own lab:

    Why there are only two power supplies for 4 nodes?

    Because that's where the big savings come from - not needing eight power supplies to get redundancy, you only need two. That reduces power consumption and cost and space, dramatically. If it wasn't for the shared power and chassis, blades would have no purpose to exist.

    Yes, it's better use of resources.

    The power supplies are also more effective and have less power loss than individual servers because they operate at a higher current.

    Yeah, a small scale version of what some giant datacenters do.... convert to DC when the power enters the building and power the whole building on 12V DC so you just need one (or two) insanely high power, high quality converters. Then all the mobos get straight 12V / 5V feeds.

    Big blades (16 units) do this at a smaller scale.

    These 4 node units do it at a still smaller scale. But it's all the same theory, reduce the number of power transactions for efficiency.



  • @manxam said in Building your own lab:

    What node has access to the disks or is each node responsible for 3 drives?
    Can you assign one node all the storage and the remaining 3 be just compute?

    Each node is hardwired to the drives so in this particular case you have 3 x 3.5" bays for each node. The ones with 2.5" bays have 6x2.5" per node.

    There are also SATA ports and USB ports inside for boot drives.



  • @scottalanmiller said in Building your own lab:

    @Pete-S said in Building your own lab:

    @VoIP_n00b said in Building your own lab:

    Enjoy your $500+ power bill

    Depends on what you pay per kWh and what you put in the nodes.

    We have similar servers at work and they draw about 55W per node with VMs running but almost no load. I think that would be a typical power profile in a lab setup.

    So let's say 250W for four servers. That's 6 kWh per day and 180 kWh per month. If you pay 14 cents per kWh that's $25 per month in electricity.

    And if you have it at home maybe you don't need all nodes running all the time.

    Right, you can easily use just two, but get the experience of the hardware.

    That's a good point. You could potentially populate just two nodes if you wanted for starters. Then when you need more, you could pick up some more CPUs and memory and populate the others.

    A minimum config could be two nodes with just 1 CPU and 32GB of RAM each. That would be...$700.



  • @Pete-S said in Building your own lab:

    @scottalanmiller said in Building your own lab:

    @Pete-S said in Building your own lab:

    @VoIP_n00b said in Building your own lab:

    Enjoy your $500+ power bill

    Depends on what you pay per kWh and what you put in the nodes.

    We have similar servers at work and they draw about 55W per node with VMs running but almost no load. I think that would be a typical power profile in a lab setup.

    So let's say 250W for four servers. That's 6 kWh per day and 180 kWh per month. If you pay 14 cents per kWh that's $25 per month in electricity.

    And if you have it at home maybe you don't need all nodes running all the time.

    Right, you can easily use just two, but get the experience of the hardware.

    That's a good point. You could potentially just populate just two nodes if you wanted for starters. Then when you need more, you could pick up some more CPUs and memory and populate the others.

    A minimum config could be two nodes with just 1 CPU and 32GB of RAM each. That would be...$700.

    Plenty for a Starwind style cluster. Or ProxMox.



  • @scottalanmiller said in Building your own lab:

    @Pete-S said in Building your own lab:

    @scottalanmiller said in Building your own lab:

    @Pete-S said in Building your own lab:

    @VoIP_n00b said in Building your own lab:

    Enjoy your $500+ power bill

    Depends on what you pay per kWh and what you put in the nodes.

    We have similar servers at work and they draw about 55W per node with VMs running but almost no load. I think that would be a typical power profile in a lab setup.

    So let's say 250W for four servers. That's 6 kWh per day and 180 kWh per month. If you pay 14 cents per kWh that's $25 per month in electricity.

    And if you have it at home maybe you don't need all nodes running all the time.

    Right, you can easily use just two, but get the experience of the hardware.

    That's a good point. You could potentially just populate just two nodes if you wanted for starters. Then when you need more, you could pick up some more CPUs and memory and populate the others.

    A minimum config could be two nodes with just 1 CPU and 32GB of RAM each. That would be...$700.

    Plenty for a Starwind style cluster. Or ProxMox.

    Yes. If you know that you only ever going to need two nodes you could get one of these below. It's a little newer and is ready to go with 2x6c CPU and 32GB RAM per node. 6x3.5" drive bays per node.
    $600.
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/143638386085



  • @scottalanmiller said in Building your own lab:

    @gjacobse said in Building your own lab:

    @scottalanmiller said in Building your own lab:

    @gjacobse said in Building your own lab:

    Not to be a downer - in these times- who has an extra $1,300? I sincerely hope that all have kept their employment as I have - $1,300 will go a long way in repairs on a vehicle I can’t afford to replace.

    Having a home lab is a great tool but just doesn’t seem practical to invest in right now.

    It's always good to invest. In fact, investing when times are tough often leads to the lowest investment cost and the highest returns. Holding back investments due to uncertainty is often a cause for the greatest losses.

    It is specifically because times are uncertain that embracing growth and preparing to be as ready as possible for the job market matters more than normal.

    I can understand this principle, however tell that to my mechanic.

    Truck needs a new power steering pump and a boat load of other things. Price paid for having to drive for work and having a fifteen year old vehicle.

    Right, maybe time to invest in a more cost effective vehicle.

    If only that were possible. Bandaid is all that is possible. Market and salary do-not permit anything more.



  • @scottalanmiller @Pete-S
    Do we have any complete post or article on ML which describes how to build a Lab with design, like server, switch etc. arrangement.

    Really appreciate, if someone can provide any links, which gives complete lab design, to prepare me as a good Windows System Administrator, which should include all tasks, activities a typical SysAdmin requires.



  • @gjacobse said in Building your own lab:

    @scottalanmiller said in Building your own lab:

    @gjacobse said in Building your own lab:

    @scottalanmiller said in Building your own lab:

    @gjacobse said in Building your own lab:

    Not to be a downer - in these times- who has an extra $1,300? I sincerely hope that all have kept their employment as I have - $1,300 will go a long way in repairs on a vehicle I can’t afford to replace.

    Having a home lab is a great tool but just doesn’t seem practical to invest in right now.

    It's always good to invest. In fact, investing when times are tough often leads to the lowest investment cost and the highest returns. Holding back investments due to uncertainty is often a cause for the greatest losses.

    It is specifically because times are uncertain that embracing growth and preparing to be as ready as possible for the job market matters more than normal.

    I can understand this principle, however tell that to my mechanic.

    Truck needs a new power steering pump and a boat load of other things. Price paid for having to drive for work and having a fifteen year old vehicle.

    Right, maybe time to invest in a more cost effective vehicle.

    If only that were possible. Bandaid is all that is possible. Market and salary do-not permit anything more.

    You gotta do what you gotta do. I just wanted to highlight that it is possible to get hands-on experience with gear that would be out-of-reach for most when bought new.



  • @openit said in Building your own lab:

    @scottalanmiller @Pete-S
    Do we have any complete post or article on ML which describes how to build a Lab with design, like server, switch etc. arrangement.

    Really appreciate, if someone can provide any links, which gives complete lab design, to prepare me as a good Windows System Administrator, which should include all tasks, activities a typical SysAdmin requires.

    The idea is that if you set up everything, you have gained experienced and knowledge in a number of areas you would not get otherwise.

    Much more valuable than following a post.

    Otherwise you would need a whole series of posts and videos to get you from start to finish.



  • @Pete-S said in Building your own lab:

    @openit said in Building your own lab:

    @scottalanmiller @Pete-S
    Do we have any complete post or article on ML which describes how to build a Lab with design, like server, switch etc. arrangement.

    Really appreciate, if someone can provide any links, which gives complete lab design, to prepare me as a good Windows System Administrator, which should include all tasks, activities a typical SysAdmin requires.

    The idea is that if you set up everything, you have gained experienced and knowledge in a number of areas you would not get otherwise.

    Much more valuable than following a post.

    Otherwise you would need a whole series of posts and videos to get you from start to finish.

    I think the best way to get started is to dive head in. First would be to get some servers. Then networking. Then it's time to install hypervisors.

    IMHO it's best to build something you have a use for or can find a use for.



  • @openit said in Building your own lab:

    @scottalanmiller @Pete-S
    Do we have any complete post or article on ML which describes how to build a Lab with design, like server, switch etc. arrangement.

    Really appreciate, if someone can provide any links, which gives complete lab design, to prepare me as a good Windows System Administrator, which should include all tasks, activities a typical SysAdmin requires.

    No, but it's something i could make easily enough. There's a lot of "in depends" in that kind of thing, of course.

    The biggest things for you, though, is.... 1) get up to date Windows 2) get a lot of it 3) run it on real hardware in a production way 4) do absolutely everything



  • @openit said in Building your own lab:

    @scottalanmiller @Pete-S
    Do we have any complete post or article on ML which describes how to build a Lab with design, like server, switch etc. arrangement.

    Really appreciate, if someone can provide any links, which gives complete lab design, to prepare me as a good Windows System Administrator, which should include all tasks, activities a typical SysAdmin requires.

    https://www.servethehome.com/

    Some tasks would be setting up a monitoring alert system that alerts you of reboots, account lockouts, high CPU usage, disk usage, network, etc. Get familiar with using PowerShell to manage your Windows systems. Setting up a Dev or test to in order test your Windows or 3rd party applications before deploying to production.


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