Mac Pro for VMWare Environment?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Protoman, Jun 6, 2007.

  1. Protoman macrumors newbie

    May 7, 2007
    Hi everyone,

    I'm looking at purchasing a Mac so that I can do research and eventual deployment for Windows applications and technologies via VMWare when VMWare Fusion becomes available for purchase, while having it double as my daily usage computer that I use for general tasks and Mac administration (e.g. ARD for the domain and building/updating Mac images for deployment).

    My current VMWare development environment consists of the following VMs, with all of them running Windows Server 2003 Standard, and all run simultaneously:

    * Domain Controller running DHCP, DNS, and Active Directory,
    * Exchange 2003 (soon to be Exchange 2007),
    * SQL Server 2005,
    * 2 Office SharePoint Server 2007 servers,
    * 3 ISA Server Enterprise servers, and
    * 2 XP Pro session.

    Here's the Mac I had in mind to handle this, as I have a budget of $3,000 to spend:

    Mac Pro:

    * 2 x 2.0 GHz,
    * 10 GB memory (1 GB + 1 GB displaced from another Mac Pro + 8 GB kit purchased elsewhere),
    * 250 GB SATA-2 drive for VM environment,
    * 150 GB WD Raptor for boot drive, and
    * All other options are either minimum available and/or not included (e.g. AirPort Extreme). I'm putting more money into the memory since the VM's performance seems to be more RAM than CPU when you reach a certain CPU speed.

    It seems that the Mac Pro would be the most logical choice for this, but I'm curious if a C2D iMac could handle a load like this too, as the P4 H/T PC I have is doing the job (albeit barely).

    What's your thoughts?

    Thanks! :) :apple:
  2. murfle macrumors regular

    Mar 7, 2007
    I'm assuming from the way you described your potential setup, you will have a total of 6 VMs running...

    C2D iMacs currently max out at 3 gigs, so you would be looking at less than half a gig of RAM per VM, which for win2k3 is not enough with those services running.

    10GB of ram in the mac pro would let you allocate 1 to 1.5 gb each, with enough left over to run a few apps natively.

    Curious what your P4 setup is...

    Personally I only have one VM running on a 8-core 3.0GHz with 9 GB ram, and it runs very smoothly in VMWare. I've only been running it since last night, so I haven't gotten anything else installed, but I'm going to be throwing on a linux distro or two, and solaris 10.

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