serving up new stuff!

Today I bought a pair of used HP DL380 (Gen 5) rackable servers.

The bottom line is that if I bought them as a pair, I could get them for a very good, heavily discounted price.

The servers have been refurbed back to the core.

Each server comes with 2x Quad Core Xeon 2.33Ghz processors.

And each server also comes with 16GB of RAM.

So they are RAIDed, VMWare-ready, and sufficiently powered to do the kind of thing I want them to do.


Overpowered might be more accurate.

But there’s no such thing as having too much processing power, eh?

The downside is that although each server has 8 bays, neither has any disks, so I’ll have to buy those separately.

I’ve decided that I’ll buy two pairs of disks, a pair for each server.

When I’ve installed the disks, I’ll install CentOS on each server, and virtualise the platforms.

Then, as I add more disks to each server, over time, I just need to resize the virtualised environments to take advantage of the increased disk capacity.

Within the virtualised environments on each physical server, I can create a number of virtual servers (VMs).

So each physical server could host, for example, ten VMs.

A total of 20 virtual servers.

I’m really looking forward to some first-class geekage.

I’m also very excited because this is the first step down the path of a new business venture that I want to explore.

serving up new stuff?

The price of mid-range servers has taken a big dip in recent months.

I’m seriously considering taking advantage of this.

The idea that I’m playing with is to grab a used server, installing ESX Server, and building virtualised machines on it.

The plan is to replicate everything the NAS currently does, but to replicate it in a more scaleable, faster environment.

The NAS has 256MB of RAM.

A decent used server comes with 16GB of RAM.

And that’s a huge difference.

Cost of a used server?

About £150.

Cost of ESX Server?


Cost of operating system?


Cost of software (DNS Server, Mailserver, Firewall, etc)?


Cost of database products?


It would be an interesting project.

And it fits nicely with my business idea.

things i have learned so far this year (2015)

  1. If I delete directories in the NAS that the NAS backup routine is set to backup on a scheduled job, the scheduled job will fail – even if 99.9% of the other directories are still in place/intact
  2. I can only set one NAS backup job to a specific external HDD. Therefore if I want to set two external backup jobs (even if they are configured to run days apart) I need to set each to a separate external device