My home lab – Part 2


This is a follow up blogpost on my home lab part 1. If you haven’t read it, you can read it here.

As I wrote in my last blogpost, I added some more components in the lab. All three Lenovo W510′s has been reconfigured like this:

Screen Shot 2014-06-17 at 15.12.11

Every laptop I bought had different disk size and amount of memory which did not meet my requirements. The one laptop, which was my own, had already a  240 GB OCZ Vertex 3 SSD in place, so that were not replaced. Every other components, existing disks, memory modules and DVD drives were removed from all laptops and sold online.
I added these components for each laptop instead:


  • 240 GB Intel 530 SSD
  • 1 TB Spinning disk (7200 RPM) from HGST
  • Harddisk Bay adapter
  • 4×8 GB memory modules (1333 Mhz)
  • 16 GB Kingston DT Micro USB stick

So lets do some cost calculations. I need to point out that some of the components were bought online as secondhand and some brand new.



Component Pcs. Secondhand Price pr. pcs Amount
Lenovo W510 1 X $291.00 $291.00
Lenovo W510 1 X $546.00 $546.00
240 GB Intel 530 SSD 2 $100.00 $200.00
1 TB HGST HDD 3 $86.00 $258.00
HDD Bay Adapter 2 $27.00 $54.00
8 GB RAM modules 4 X $55.00 $220.00
8 GB RAM modules 8 $82.00 $656.00
Kingston USB 16 GB 3 $9.00 $27.00
Total Cost $2,252.00


As you can see I was lucky to get one of  the Lenovo W510 much cheaper than the other. One of them also included a harddisk bay adapter.
I did not include the cost of my existing components, such as my first Lenovo Laptop, HP Switch, QNAP  etc, as the prices and versions probably changed. Do note that prices are based on costs in Denmark. If you are based in US, you probably can buy the components a bit cheaper.

So what I really wanted to achieve, with the latest addition to my home lab, was to enable Virtual SAN. As it is right now, there are some issues with the AHCI controller for Virtual SAN, which will be fixed in near future – hopefully.

However I was able to get Virtual SAN working on my laptops with my AHCI controllers. So as it is right now my home lab looks like this.


vSphere homelab


With Virtual SAN configured it gives me a total useable capacity of 2,73 TB of shared storage. This is really nice. I can get rid of my QNAP as I get more performance from Virtual SAN.


Virtual SAN


I will cover some deeper Virtual SAN stuff  and some performance stats within the home lab in a follow up blogpost in near future. So stay tuned at this site!


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