In my current role, I don’t do much System Engineer work, and frankly it’s boring to not.

I’ve decided that I need to keep my skills up and I’m working on rebuilding in my home lab what we had with the old team.

Compiling a list this is what I need to build, and what I hope to blog on.  I find that the simple how to guides are prevalent across the web, so I’ll blog about those pain points I encounter.

  1.  Systems Center Operations Manager 2016
  2.  Systems Center Virtual Machine Manager 2016 (with Substitute VMware ESXI and vSphere)
  3.  Windows Server Update Services
  4.  Windows Deployment Services
  5.  Active Directory
  6.  Windows DNS
  7.  Puppet
  8.  Foreman (though not technically in our old environment, I would like to use it for nix deployments
  9.  SQL Clustering and Replication
  10.  Virtual Desktop Infrastructure

My Active Directory, Windows DNS, Foreman, and Puppet Installations are already completed.  My vSphere and ESXi Systems is complete as well.

My entire infrastructure is running on the following as VMs off an ESXi Server


SUPERMICRO MBD-X10SRL-F Server Motherboard LGA 2011 R3

Intel Xeon E5-2609 V4 1.7 GHz 20MB L3 Cache LGA 2011 85W BX80660E52609V4 Server Processor

8X SAMSUNG 16GB 288-Pin DDR4 SDRAM ECC Registered DDR4 2133 (PC4 17000) Server Memory Model M393A2G40DB0-CPB


Intel RS3DC080 PCI-Express 3.0 x8 Low Profile Ready SATA / SAS Controller Card

Intel 750 Series AIC 400GB PCI-Express 3.0 x4 MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) SSDPEDMW400G4X1

4X HGST HITACHI Ultrastar SSD400M 400GB SAS 6GB SSD 2.5″ HUSML4040ASS600 (SSD DataStore)


Intel Ethernet Converged Network Adapter X540-T2

Intel Ethernet Server Adapter I350-F4

MikroTik – CRS125-24G-1S-IN – , Cloud Router Gigabit Switch, 24x 10/100/1000 Mbit/s Gigabit Ethernet with AutoMDI/X, Fully manageable Layer3, RouterOS v6, Level 5 license.

ASUS XG-U2008 Unmanaged 2-port 10G and 8-port Gigabit Switch


  • Both the SSD Datastores are running in a RAID 5
  • All Parts except the Intel 750 SSD, Motherboard, and CPU were purchased on eBay.   I saved hundreds by doing that.  DDR4 ECC is dirt cheap on eBay right now.
  • I will run out of storage space and memory long before I run out of CPU
    • To up the memory I’ll need to purchase 32GB DIMMS as I am maxed out with 16GB DIMMScapture
  • The Mikrotik Switch Handles 1G Traffic
  • The Asus Switch Handles 10G Traffic between my NAS and my Vmware Server
    • Current the 10G NIC is direct connected to one of my VMs that allows me to transfers data over the 10G NICs
  • The storage breakdown is below.  NappItDataStore is my NAS and it has ISO files for OS installs, and other installers.  All told, VM storage is only 2.8TB.  I would love to consolidate down to 4 X 1.2TB NVME SSDs and currently have my eye on this.  At 500$ a drive, it’s too expensive.  Hopefully these drives will start to come down on the used market.  At that point I could eliminate the Intel RAID Card, and go with all PCIE SSDs.





Published by mdicecca112

Systems Engineer from the Greater Boston Area

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