To replace OpenSolaris, I would need an environment that provided all the features I was currently running. This meant I needed a CIFS and NFS server, iSCSI target server, internal DNS server, CUPS print server, private IMAP server (for my old pre-Gmail mail archive) and Windows 7 virtual machine courtesy of VirtualBox. Yeah, OpenSolaris was a *very* capable platform.
The solution I opted for was to turn the ML110 G5 into another VMware ESXi server, running a number of virtual machines the provide the above services. I would also take this opportunity to fix a couple of niggling problems with the way it was setup.
This change coincided with a number of new purchases for the home network:
- Acer Revo Aspire
- Netgear ReadyNAS Duo
- OCZ Vertex 2 SSD
I bought the Netgear ReadyNAS Duo after looking at some of the alternatives. I was originally tempted by the Iomega ix2-200d, but was put off by the fact the filesystem is proprietary and requires you to send the unit back if there is a problem. In contrast, the ReadyNAS Duo uses Ext3, but the real dealmaker was an offer to get a second 1TB disk *for free* (via mail-in coupon). My initial playing with this unit has been positive and it's nice and quiet, but I've not spent a huge amount of time with it yet.
The OCZ Vertex 2 SSD (60GB) was purchased because I wanted to experiment with the NexentaStor [Community Edition] virtual storage appliance. Built on top of the open-sourced Solaris codebase, Nexenta have built a storage solution around ZFS. Although the SSD is pretty small for a disk, it can be added as an "L2ARC" (Level 2 Adaptive Read Cache) to boost performance. This will require a block post of it's own to detail.
Finally, although I am not pleased with the way that Oracle have gutted Sun, the Solaris operating system remains excellent and I will be using it in my work for the foreseeable future. The preview release of Solaris 11 Express demanded a look.
I'll be blogging about some of these developments in future posts, coming soon...
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