First ESXi Server

I decided that I need to build myself a home ESXi server in order to consolodate my old physical servers I have. Using older hardware and doing very few properly managed backups, I’ve lost important data more then once. My goal here will be to build a more stable environment to run my servers and also expand and try out new ideas and solution within the virtualied environment.
Last week, I began ordering the parts that I will use for the new server build. I will also be using some old parts from previously built servers that are either laying arround or currently running and will soon be replaced.
Here are the new parts:
Power supply: Antec TruPower 550W (90$)
Hard drive: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F4 HD204UI 2TB (105$)
Motherboard: SUPERMICRO MBD-X8SIL-F-O (195$)
Processor: Intel Xeon X3440 Lynnfield 2.53GHz Quad-Core (240$)
RAM: 2x Kingston 4GB DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1066 ECC (107$)
USB Key: Kingston DataTraveler G3 4GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive (7$)
Case fan: 2x APEVIA CF8S 80mm (3$)
I am planning on reusing the following hardware:
Case: AOpen Custom PC
Hard drives: 4x Seagate Barracuda ST3500320AS 500GB
Hard drives: 2x Seagate Barracuda ST3160812AS 160GB

RAID controller: HighPoint RocketRAID 2300 PCI Express SATA II (3.0Gb/s) Controller Card (130$)
Hard drive cage: COOLER MASTER STB-3T4-E3-GP 4-in-3 Device Module Hardisk Cage (24$)
I will document my build process once all the parts arrive

3 replies on “First ESXi Server”

Hi, I know this post is quite old, but if you still check it…I was wondering if you ran into any issues with the HighPoint 2300 RAID controller. I’m currently building an esx server for basically the same reason you did so I’d rather not drop several hundred dollars on one of the the VMware “approved” RAID controllers. However, I also don’t want to just throw money away and have esx not recognize the RAID volume. Thanks in advance!

Hi Brian,
I initially had exactly the same card as you, the HighPoint 2300. Unfortunately, I never got it to work with ESXi. The problem is that it is driver based and not RoC (Raid on Chip) RAID controller. From my understanding, ESXi doesn’t support driver based RAID cards, in the same way it doesn’t support motherboard that are capable of doing software based RAID. Personally, I think its worth going with a decent approved RAID controller as all your VMs will be stored there and is performance (speed) is bad, you’ll definitely see it when using those VMs.

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