I am looking to set up a VMware ESXi cluster for the first time. I would appreciate any thoughts that you guys have on the configuration of it. I am trying to get as reliable a system I can for the money, while allowing upgrades in the future for when we have a larger budget. I haven't purchased any of this equipment yet, but am looking to do very soon (next 2 weeks or so), and am very open to other peoples' ideas.
I am looking at:
2 Identical VMware ESXi boxes, running VMware essentials. I am planning on running half of our VMs on each system.
2 SAN boxes running iSCSI (running open-E V6) which are replicated to each other, using active-passive failover. (open-E takes care of this using virtual IPs)
so we have
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LAN Backbone.... || || ESXi1 ESXi2 || X || switch switch || X || SAN1------SAN2
I am planning on getting the Veeam essentials package.
My main question for you is how set up Veeam. It isn't clear to me exactly the best way to do this. My plan was to get a Buffalo terastation III as a backup target (or similar). From reading the user guide, it looks like the best way to do this is to have a physical server connected to one of the iSCSI switches (so that it can access the SAN disks directly). This could then send data straight to the terastation, bypassing the ESXi servers/LAN completely. However, there is a huge amount of computing power available in those servers (our server load is relatively light)- what are my options for setting this up as a VM?
Another question I had was for offsite backups. I was originally planning on using Rsync from the local terastation to an identical Terastation offsite over a VPN every night. However, it looks like the backup files are going to be changing pretty significantly each time- My understanding is that rsync is a "file" level rather than a "block" level synching tool, so it would need to push all new files, every night. We currently only have a 3 Mbit connection, so that would limit us to a about 8 GB per 8 hour night (and that is under ideal conditions), and we're going to have something on the order of 2 Terabytes of data (uncompressed/un-deduplicated), so that obviously will not work. Is there a better way to do this using Veeam directly??
Has anyone done something similar to this configuration?