Virtual WHS -- Virtual PC or Virtual Server?

Discussion in 'Virtual PC' started by David Wilkinson, Jan 19, 2009.

  1. I am planning to set up Windows Home Server in a virtual machine, initially for
    experimentation, but perhaps for real. Host will be Windows XP Professional x86.

    Should I use virtual PC or Virtual Server? Or would VMWare Server (or
    Workstation, which I own) be better?
     
    David Wilkinson, Jan 19, 2009
    #1
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  2. David Wilkinson

    Robert Comer Guest

    It's not really the best solution to run WHS in a VM, it's pretty
    rigid in disk timings and such, but I'd run it on Virtual Server, that
    fits the task the best and can be set to always autostart. The only
    reason I'd think about running it on VMWare Server is if you wanted to
    use raw USB disks, but the performance isn't great that way.
     
    Robert Comer, Jan 19, 2009
    #2
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  3. Thanks, Robert.

    What does "pretty rigid in disk timings and such" mean?

    BTW, I am mostly interested in the WHS for client backup and connectivity, not
    for shared folders (for which I think I would prefer using shared folders on the
    host). I'm planning to run the WHS with just one big (virtual) hard drive on the
    eSata drive.

    Will eSata perform better than USB in this situation (the drive I have can be
    either).
     
    David Wilkinson, Jan 19, 2009
    #3
  4. David Wilkinson

    Robert Comer Guest

    What does "pretty rigid in disk timings and such" mean?

    If the disk balancer or cleanup are slowed down any there's a good
    chance for corruption or the backup database. At least I ran into it
    a lot when I tried to run WHS in a VM. (I'd only get about two weeks
    out of a fresh WHS install in a VM before the corruption started to
    take its toll.)
    That's all I ever used it for in a VM as well.
    I don't know on that one, I've never used an eSata drive, so I don't
    know what the reliability or speed is.
     
    Robert Comer, Jan 19, 2009
    #4
  5. Robert:

    That is rather disturbing. But I haven't seen other reports of corruption of WHS
    in a virtual machine.

    I was thinking of running with just a single large (500 GB) virtual hard drive,
    so there would be none of this disk balancing/staging/duplication business going
    on. Do you think that would make it more reliable.

    Also, what about fixed size versus expanding virtual hard disk?
     
    David Wilkinson, Jan 19, 2009
    #5
  6. David Wilkinson

    Robert Comer Guest

    Do you think that would make it more reliable.

    All I can say is try it, on my hardware it didn't work, maybe on yours
    it will. (Pentium D 930, dual core 3Ghz with the original version of
    VT, Vista or XP host, 4G of RAM, lots of disk.)
    Fixed would be best.
     
    Robert Comer, Jan 19, 2009
    #6
  7. David Wilkinson

    Bo Berglund Guest

    A bit OT here, but I have been looking for WHS on the MS Downloads
    (MSDN Subscriber) without finding any trace of it.
    Do you know if it is a server that is part of the MSDN
    subscriptions???
     
    Bo Berglund, Jan 19, 2009
    #7
  8. David Wilkinson

    Robert Comer Guest

    I don't think MSDN carries it.

    --
    Bob Comer


     
    Robert Comer, Jan 19, 2009
    #8
  9. David Wilkinson

    Dave Warren Guest

    In message <> David Wilkinson
    In short, yes. eSATA performs like an internal SATA drive, the only
    difference is in cabling.

    USB introduces fairly significant overhead, so even if your drive can't
    exceed your USB controller's theoretical bandwidth, eSATA will still be
    faster then USB for the same underlying physical drive.
     
    Dave Warren, Jan 20, 2009
    #9
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