Home Lab

The Home Lab is fundamental to learning and tossing around ideas.  It is amazing how many of the same issues you can learn to solve in a small home network/virtualization environment that translates to large enterprise production environments.  The following details are constantly changing as the lab grows and morphs into what I need it to be at the time.

Home Lab VMs Running

My Home Lab Virtual environment tends to be fairly volatile as I am continually spinning up new VMs/appliances and tearing them down.  However, there are a few VMs I have up and running that are more mainstays in my environment.

vSphere Specific

  • VMware Site Recovery Manager 8.x
  • vCenter 6.7 Update 1
    • Test vCenter 6.7 Update 1
    • Test DR vCenter 6.7 Update 1
  • vSphere Replication Appliance

Linux VMs

  • Arpwatch – running on Ubuntu 14.04 with arpwatch modules installed
  • Generic Ubuntu webserver – running to test various version of web technology, PHP code, etc
  • Ubuntu PKS machine
  • Terraform Ubuntu VM
  • Ansible Ubuntu VM
  • Various Firewall VMs for testing:
    • Untangle 14

Data Protection VMs for Testing, etc

  • Vembu BDR Suite v4.0
  • NAKIVO Backup & Replication
  • Veeam Backup & Replication

Windows VMs

  • Windows Domain environment
    • Windows Server 2019 Domain controller
    • Windows DNS
    • Network Policy Server/RADIUS
    • PRTG Monitoring software
    •  Various Windows Server 2012 R2 services box with various network services, etc
    • Various Windows Server 2016 boxes
    • Various Windows Server 2019 boxes
  • Various test clients:
    • Windows 10
    • TTYLinux
    • Ubuntu VMs

Windows Physical Workstation

  • Windows 10 Atom series MITX pc based workstation for 802.1x testing

Home Lab Networking

  • Palo Alto PA-220 – Wildfire, etc
    • Meraki MX-64 – Firewall router (deprecated for now)
  • mikrotik rb951g-2hnd – wireless – private and public SSIDs
  • Cisco SG300-20 – serves as core switch
  • Meraki MS220-8P – serves as IDF network switch
  • Extreme x440-g2 for policy testing, RADIUS, microsegmentation, etc

Virtual Hosts

(2) Node vSAN 6.7 U1 Cluster

  • (2) Mini Tower Intel Xeon processor D-1541 8-Core, SoC:
    • 1x Intel Xeon processor D-1541, 2.10GHz CPU, 2.7GHz turbo speed
    • 128GB DDR4 2400MHz RDIMM ECC Memory
    • (2) Samsung 960 EVO 1TB NVMe M.2 drive – Capacity Drives
    • (1) Samsung 970 EVO 250 GB NVMe M.2 drive – Cache
  • (1) Mini Tower Intel Xeon processor D-1541 8-Core, SoC:
    • 1x Intel Xeon processor D-1541, 2.10GHz CPU, 2.7GHz turbo speed
    • 32GB DDR4 2400MHz RDIMM ECC Memory
    • (1) Samsung 960 EVO 1TB NVMe M.2 drive – Capacity Drives
    • (2) 4 TB JBOD capacity drives for various datastores

Mobile/Auxilliary Lab

I have a Dell precision Workstation laptop with Core i7 and 32gigs of RAM.  With the laptop, I am running VMware Workstation 15 Pro with nested ESXi installs running.

The nested ESXi installation is configured as follows:

  • (2) hosts running ESXi 6.7 Update 1
    • 6 gigs of memory for each
  • (1) vCenter 6.7 Update 1 VCSA appliance
    • Thin provisioned
    • 4 gigs of RAM
  • (1) FreeNAS VM
    • Storage provisioned as iSCSI targets
  • (1) Ubuntu Server installation
    • Running BIND for lightweight DNS resolution

Windows VMs on the laptop

  • (2) Windows 10 VMs
  • (2) Windows 8.1 VMs
  • (1) Cisco VIRL
  • (1) Xenserver install