[one-users] Looking at moving to OpenNebula with a few questions

Donny Brooks dbrooks at mdah.state.ms.us
Thu Oct 27 09:48:58 PDT 2011

Hello all,

      I have been running Xen on our virtual servers here for a while 
now. Recently we have added some machines and it has come up that we 
need to redo our virtual servers to better utilize them. The main thing 
the higher-ups are requesting is a GUI to manage the environment. So I 
asked on the xen-users list and they pointed me to OpenNebula. So far I 
like what I see. Support for Xen, KVM, and VMWare is a plus for future 
expansion if needed.

I have a few questions though. Below is our current machine and SAN 
specs. I want to fully utilize all of them and have some level of 
failover, either manual or automatic, for when I need to bring a machine 
down for maintenance. Here's the specs:

xen-test: Testbed machine:Dell 2900; 8x 300GB in raid6, 8GB ram, 1x 
Intel 5405 quad core 2.0Ghz, 2x gigabit nics
xen1: Production unit: Dell T710; 8x 2TB in raid6, 24GB ram, 2x Intel 
5504 quad core 2.0Ghz, 4x gigabit nics
xen2: Production unit: Dell R610; 3x 160GB in raid5, 32GB ram, 2x Intel 
5506 quad core 2.13Ghz, 4x gigabit nics
SAN: Dell MD3200i; 12x 2TB in raid6, dual controllers.

Currently all machines have their network cards bonded and vlans passed 
over the trunked interface as we have approximately 20 vlans we use. 
This should be fairly simple to do with OpenNebula correct?
I have a mix of local and network storage. Should OpenNebula be able to 
handle both local and SAN storage?
All raid is hardware based. With the current setup what is the best way 
to set it up for best fault tolerance/speed/space?
What is the best OS to start with? We currently use Centos 5.5 on all 3 
nodes but would prefer Fedora or similar. Debian would be doable also.
Would I be able to import the existing virtual machines that are running 
into OpenNebula?

I know that one major performance hit is the raid6 and it would be 
better to do a raid10. At the time xen1 and the SAN were purchased they 
were all we had so fault tolerance with maximum space was top priority 
over speed. We may look at redoing this soon.

We are a small state government agency with little to no IT budget so I 
have to work with what I have. Please keep that in mind before 
suggesting "why not buy such and such...". Thanks in advance for the input.

Donny B.

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