Small, Low Power, Budget, Virtual lab build

BurnsieBurnsie Member Posts: 84 ■■□□□□□□□□
Hey Guys, I didn't want to hijack anyone else build thread with a slightly different topic, so I figured I would start a new thread.

I am going to be starting on MCSA and VMware certs in the very near future and need to have a separate machine to lab with. I am looking for something that is going to run the OS's and allow me to make configuration changes, but no heavy processing. I also plan to leave some room to grow on the machine. Additionally, I live in Hawaii and the electricity rates are atrocious, so being energy efficient is a big requirement.

With that in mind, what you do you guys think of this build:

CPU: AMD Athlon 5350 APU, 2.05GHZ
RAM: 8GB Crucial Ballistix 1600 single stick (So I can add additional 8GB later)
HDD: WD 320GB 7200rpm
PSU: Corsair CX430M 430Watts
Case: Cooler Master Elite 110 Cube

This build would be very energy efficient and leave room for a SSD, larger HDD and more RAM later. At this point, I just need it to run the host OS and maybe 1-2 VM's at a time.




  • JeanMJeanM Member Posts: 1,117
    So many threads on this lately :)

    Basically, the more ram you can afford and stuff the board with the better experience it will be.
    8gig of ram + 320gb for storage should be more than enough for the host os + virtual box /vmware player or workstation + a couple guest virtual machines.
    2015 goals - ccna voice / vmware vcp.
  • BurnsieBurnsie Member Posts: 84 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Yea, sorry about that. I just didn't want to hijack a thread with a very different purpose and wanted to see what other people in similar situations were using out there. I definitely don't want a server system off of Ebay that is going to be a power hog. Our electric bill last month was ~$400 and that was only running the A/C half the month!

  • jibbajabbajibbajabba Member Posts: 4,317 ■■■■■■■■□□
    HP Microservers are pretty much as low as it can get power wise .. You can get 16GB in them (depends on the bios) but the RAM is expensive .. but if 8GB is all you need then the Microserver is what you want .. Google that puppy :)

    You only say budget - not low or high - so I assume you got the cash for a Mac Mini too

    Running ESXi 5.5/5.5u1 on Apple Mac Mini + Thunderbolt Ethernet Adapter Caveat | virtuallyGhetto

    j/k - will obviously be above budget - but certainly low on power :)
    My own knowledge base made public: :p
  • BurnsieBurnsie Member Posts: 84 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Sorry, my mistake omitting the budget number. The build I have above is about $300 since I have the HDD already. The HP Microservers are nice and are what I am modeling my build after, but as with most pre-built systems, I can build it for less. The HP servers started around $400 but only come with 2GB of RAM, which is basically a wasted slot.

    I didn't even think about a Mini, which would be awesomely compact and cheap to run, but the upgrades would be difficult/expensive.

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