Well…I managed to get a hold of an HP DL380 G3 with dual 3.06GHz Xeon processors, 2GB of RAM, and 6 36GB hard drives with a RAID 5 controller for very little cost. This has accelerated my move towards virtualizing all of my systems at home. In the process of doing so I have also decided that I’m going to upgrade my domain controllers to Server 2008 Standard.

First off I’m using as a base OS on the DL380 Ubuntu 8.04 with VMware Server 1.0.6. The reason being is that I can’t install Server 2008 with Hyper-V on the DL380 G3 — it’s only supported on the DL380 G5 (which has the Intel procs with VT). So, given that I decided to go with Ubuntu and VMware. The install of Ubuntu went easy enough and VMware was just slightly more complicated. I used the instructions here to get the VMware MUI working properly (or course, now it’s not working properly and I’ve got to figure out why).

Anyway, now that I’ve gotten VMware installed and configured I have installed two VM guests — Server 2008 Standard and Server 2008 Core Standard. I’m using both network interfaces on the machine — one for connecting to the VM host system and the other is a bridged interface for the VM guests. I configured the Server 2008 Core system’s network settings according to Dan Petri’s instructions here. In addition I enabled NetBIOS over TCP/IP using the wmic command utility. The instructions for doing that are here.

Finally, once the VMware Tools were installed on the Server 2008 Core system I had to change the display resolution. Turns out, when you install the VMware Tools on Server 2008 Core the display resolution goes from 800×600 to 640×480 (which is really annoying – see the following picture).

Server 2008 Core After VMware Tools Install

Server 2008 Core After VMware Tools Install

Changing that is not so simple though as it requires that you modify the registry. You need to find the right registry setting. The video settings can be found in HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Video\ where is the ID for the video card and driver currently being used. Look for the Device Description registry key (it should be VMware SVGA II). Right above it are the DefaultSettings.XResolution and the DefaultSettings.YResolution registry key. They are both DWORDs and can be input either in hexadecimal or decimal (see below)

Server 2008 Core Registry Settings for Display Resolution

Server 2008 Core Registry Settings for Display Resolution

I changed the values in both registry keys to 1024 and 768 respectively and then restarted the VM (using the command shutdown /r /t 0). The final result is shown below.

Server 2008 Core with 1024x768 Display Resolution

Server 2008 Core with 1024x768 Display Resolution

Now I need to finish migrating the rest of my VM images off the old VALinux FullOn 2240 and onto the new system. The only things I need to do to the DL380 is increase the RAM from 2GB to 12GB and buy a cabinet for it…man is it loud…I forgot just how loud the DL380s are.

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