Home Lab 2016 – Part 1
Having a home lab is every IT enthusiasts dream come true, and now I can finally say that I have fulfilled that dream! I previously was (and currently still am…) using a 1-node “white box” system I had built from a spare gaming machine I had laying around, running on an open-air tech bench from TopDeck. It’s comprised of the following:
- 1 x ASUS Maximus Gene V motherboard w/ Intel 82579 LOM NIC
- 1 x Intel Core i5-3570K
- 1 x ADATA SP600 32GB SSD
- 1 x Samsung Evo 840 1TB SSD
- 1 x Seagate 1TB HDD
- 1 x Intel 82574 (single-port) NIC
- 1 x Intel 82576 (dual-port) NIC
- 1 x Corsair HX650 PSU
And even though it runs great, I simply felt it wasn’t enough as I basically wanted to replicate a mini-datacenter for my lab which would help tremendously with my VMware studies and overall VMware knowledge.
So I quickly got to work and embarked on the adventure of creating my new lab. I started off by opening a Feedly account and subscribing to numerous other user and community blogs, reading what others did to create and build/setup their homelabs, and also checked out some youtube channels.
Lot’s of good reads out there…
Just to name a few…
I also spent the last year+ researching, planning, designing, and purchasing the equipment for my new lab. And since I wanted somewhat of a low power solution (as to not incur outrageous electric bill charges) I settled on SuperMicro’s A1SAi-2750 ATOM SOC (System-on-a-chip) Mini-ITX motherboards. Boy, do these things boast a boatload of features (not getting into specifics as you guys know how to use Google I’m sure…)! Since I also wanted to have them in a rack to replicate a mini-datacenter, I went with a Navepoint 9U rack enclosure. I bought some Sandisk USB’s, some SSD’s & HDD’s (for eventual VSAN setup), and extra NIC’s (for redundancy and best practices), 1U cases, and some Synology NAS devices. Here’s my entire part’s list…
- 1 x Navepoint 9U Rack Enclosure
- 1 x ICC 48-port feed-thru Cat6 Patch Panel – 1U
- 1 x Cyberpower PR1000LCDRT2U UPS
- 1 x Cyberpower PDU15SW10ATNET ATS/PDU
- 4 x SuperMicro A1SAi-2750
- 4 X SuperMicro 504-203B 1U rackmount cases (contains a 200W PSU in each case)
- 4 x Sandisk UltraFit 16GB USB 3.0
- 4 x Kingston 120GB SSD
- 4 x HGST 500GB 7200RPM 2.5” HDD
- 4 x SuperMicro 1×3.5” to 2×2.5” Converter Brackets
- 4 x SuperMicro PCI-E x8 L-shape riser cards
- 4 x Intel I350-T4 (quad-port) NIC
- 16 x 16GB Micron 1600MHz DDR3 204-pin SO-DIMM RAM
And for NAS storage…..
- 1 x Synology DS415+
- 1 x Synology DX213 Expansion Unit
- 2 x Micron M500DC 800GB SSD
- 2 x Micron M500 480GB SSD
- 4 x Sabrent 2.5” to 3.5” Bay Converter
- 2 x HGST 6TB 7200RPM 3.5” HDD
The Networking components…
- 1 x Ubiquiti EdgeRouter ERLite-3
- 1 x ASUS RT-AC68U wifi router
- 1 x Cisco SG300-10 SMB L2/L3 switch
- 1 x Cisco SG300-52 SMB L2/L3 switch
And last, but definitely not least…. a slew of Monoprice Cat6 24AWG Flexboot cables (various lengths)
Phew!…what a list! Wait!…am I missing anything??
The end result…my new mini-datacenter homelab 2016!! (with previous Dev “white box” system to the side)
Stay tuned for Part 2 ( I hope) where I plan on “Putting it all together”!
Feel free to comment and let me know your thoughts/feedback…and words of encouragement so I can continue on this new blogging adventure!