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[Linux-cluster] Hardware/Sofware for VM use



I've had to take a break from hardware for a while as software was calling my name. Now I need to get my act together on the hardware side so thought I would ask for thoughts. I've been wanting to consolidate machines for a long time as power and cooling and waste of resources are of concern.

I know I've touched on this before but the response was somewhat overwhelming to me since I have not yet touched VM environments so was not/am not aware of terminology yet.

Questions;

Hardware?

I have powerful 8/16-way servers which I could use as VM servers.
But, I also have dozens of small 1Ghz/512MB servers in the form of very reliable blade servers.

I had asked about the possibility of creating an SSI style cluster then creating VM's out of that. Are there any such methods being used? Where a cluster of parallel processing computers is an options today? Or, are folks just basically using the most powerful computers they have, running two or more with shared storage for redundancy?

Software;

I'd like to take advantage of VM but it's not clear to me what is already included in the Linux packages, what is not, etc. I see a lot of projects out there and I'd much prefer to use RPM as well. If I have to, I can go the compile route. I prefer RPM's because they are so easy to manage for me.

What would be a good starting path, one which would allow me to try VM, in a way that I can start migrating machines over to the new method.

Thanks very much for your input/help on this.

Mike




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