Windows Management User Group

Poor Man’s Test Lab: How To Get The Most Out Of It…

By Marnix Wolf


When running a test lab on a tight budget it’s a challenge to get the most out of the available CPU, RAM and storage. Over the last years I learned some nice tricks in order to run the maximum amount of VMs on my test lab, and still having an acceptable performance.

Please be reminded, this approach of combined ‘tricks’ is only viable in test labs and shouldn’t be used in any production environment at any times! And no, I am NOT responsible for your test labs in any kind of way…

Some ground rules first
Here are some basics in order to get the most of the available hardware of your testlab.

Run the parent Windows Server OS hosting the Hyper-V role from a ‘classic’ disk (no SSD) which has good performance (10K and lots of cache); Enable BOTH write-caching policies on the classic drive (no SDD), like this:
Put the ISO and other software store on the classic disk; Run all the VMs from the availble SSDs, never ever from the ‘classic’disk!; Same goes for storing the meta data and memory of your VMs. Store them on the available SSDs, never …read more

Read more here:: Thoughts on OpsMgr and System Center 2012