Homelab or Home Datacenter?

November 18, 2019 – 6:38 pm

I am currently researching the best option for a home lab… I want to update my VCAP-DCV and get more hands-on with the rest of the VMware stack. Some great options out there, and some really pricey ones as well. My requirements are:

  • I don’t want to run nested unless I absolutely must.
  • 2 hosts minimum (I already have a 64GB former hackintosh that is now hosting my lab) – so I could do a 2 node VSAN setup and have enough resources to build a sizeable lab.
  • 128GB RAM each host minimum
  • Compatible with the current and hopefully the next version of vSphere ESXi (Now this is hard to predict, short of buying brand new servers…)
  • I’d prefer low power/low noise like everyone but…

I have looked at the Supermicro E300-9D-8cn-8tp that many people including William Lam wrote about, I looked at used Dell R720 on ebay (will they survive to ESXi 7.0?). The Dell path is a bit risky since I have no idea if the next version will support them and they take a lot of space and are not the quietest. The Supermicro E300 is nice but I have a hard time finding a decent reseller/price in Canada.

Do you have any suggestions? Do you use something similar?

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