Well, the time has come...
Both ESX hosts are getting their boost to ESX 6 as well as vCenter 6. I again had to do the ESX customizer path with the net55 vibs for the RealTek network adapter support. But once in place I was able to install ESX 6 on host #2 and verify functionality.
I also received my eVGA nVidia GT640 in the mail today and went ahead and purchased the widely hacked and documented ASUS GT640. The goal is to possibly use the eVGA card as it has 4GB of RAM, else if I am unable to determine the device ID resistors I will fall back to the 1GB ASUS thats widely documented. Most likely donating the eVGA to my Father.
With the upgrade to ESX 6, I hope to breathe new light into pure DirectPath I/O for the 2 Radeon cards I've been toying with as well. If all goes as planned, I'll be using a GT640 as a Grid card, else possibly one of the Radeon cards direct to a VM.
Well, I won 2 ebay auctions and I finally got my order from Act Labs. This means 2 things; 1, I'm not going to get a new monitor for my arcade for awhile now and 2, I may have to re-do the new artwork I've been creating due to my locked 1024x768 resolution on the current monitor.
Either way, the order from Act Labs was an old stock Light Gun. Sadly they only had red, so it will at least match the game play of blue and red for the players but not so much the arcade colors.
As for the new graphics, a quick teaser of the marquee...
Part 2 of the auction winnings, includes an EVGA GeForce GT 640 (4GB version) that I hope...hope. I can convert into a "K1 Grid Card" for ESX02 and VDI use.
There are several articles across the internet documenting such success, I'm just not sure if this card is in the list of hacked cards.
The end goal, is to allocate either 2 VDI machines with 2GB of vRAM or 4 VDI machines with 1GB of vRAM and play old school LAN party games such as Day of Defeat, Duke Nukem 3D and the like.
I have tried DirectPath I/O with both a Sapphire Radeon 5670 and 6450 with not so acceptable results, both tests consisted of a Windows7 x64 VM and both tests worked during the initial boot but failed every time after upon reboot. I do plan on testing these cards with DdirectPath I/O on a Windows 8.1 VM as well, but I am expecting the same results.
Once my items arrive and I get to tinker abit, I'll start to post my results.
I decided to take a collection of the base specs of each system I am currently running. Alot of hardware has swapped around and I have added a few items.
This does not include my Zero Clients that I will be configuring to use ESX02, my VDI host.This list is being added to the Hardware section and will be maintained along with the hardware updates.
Amazon Fire TV (Stick)
Raspberry Pi B+
Tablets and Laptops
Asus Nexus 7 ASUS-1B32
HP Mini 210-1076NR
HP Stream 7
Lenovo Yoga 2 Pro 13
PogoPlug Series 4 POGO-V4-A3-01
PogoPlug Series 4 POGO-V4-A3-01
Patriot PCNASJV35S4 Diskless System Javelin S4 4-Bay Media Server
Dell Vostro 360
I found an old post on the Missing Remtoe outlining my Home Theater back in 200-2007. Here are the specs =)
Pics coming soon FYI, for now just the stats =)
Case: Antec Overture 2 (I kinda hate it, will replace it very soon)
MotherBoard: Intel Based board (pulled form an IBM prefab PC)
CPU: P4 3.4ghz with HyperThreading
RAM: 2GB DDR
Video: ATI Radeon 9650 XT ViVo (256mb)
CD/DVD: 2x Samsung 18x DVD +/- RW drives
HDD: 1x Western Digital Raptor 34gb SATA (for OS)
HDD: 1x Maxtor Diamond Max PATA 250gb 16mb buffer (for recording)
TV Tuner: 2x ATI eHome wonder (+FM) (soon to be replaced with HDTV cards)
Remotes: MS MCE Standard Remote, and MS MCE Wireless Keyboard/Mouse
OS: Windows Vista Ultimate
TV: 42inch Olevia LCD TV 5421i
Projector: BenQ PB6110 DLP Projector (with 16:9 pull down screen)
And now the money spot, what good is a cool plugin like MyMovies (http://www.mymovies.name) with out a few movies?
My file server....
Spire SwordFin SP-9007B Black
TYAN TomCat S2865G2NR Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4 core-logic
AMD Athlon 64 3500+ Manchester 2.2GHz 512KB L2 Cache Socket 939 Processor
SYBA CL-CNL-EOLE861 120mm CPU Cooler
Lite-On LTN4865 48x Reader
Seagate ST310014A 10GB EIDE/PATA 100 5400RPM 2mb Buffer
Maxtor MaxLine Pro 500GB 7H500F0 SATA/300 7200RPM 16mb Buffer
HighPoint RocketRAID 1640
4x WesternDigital WDC WD32000JD-22KLB0 320gb SATA/150 7200RPM 8mb Buffer
3x Maxtor 4A300J0 300gb EIDE/PATA 133 5400RPM 2mb Buffer
Broadcom NetXtreme Gigabit (Onboard)
That server has over 2TB over storage, all RAID 5, and hold currently 533 full movies, a few hundred cartoons (yeah yeah....) and about 60gb of MP3s
I'll get some pics soon as I can
Well, it's been a busy few days, more like a couple of weeks. But I will some it all up into 1 weekends worth of work.
Many changes came down the pipe, and hardware was flung all over the house, here is what I was left with.
So the jist of it all? My systems had a huge need to rebalance power supplies, based on what hardware the system had and its functions.
Upgrading the Mediacenter video card allowed me to move its current card (7770) into the "New" Arcade. I then took that video card and placed it in ESX02 to toy with GPU passthrough, soon leading to the nVidia GT hacking I hope to do so I can get a cheap "gird" card for VDI
So whats the goal? Whats next? What should we look forward to (or not)
ESX01 - Dedicated to Core functionality and Systems (Home automation, Alarm, Email, AV, WSUS etc etc)
ESX02 - Dedicated to Virtual Desktops and Cloud Computing. I plan to add an nVidia GT640 or higher to this machine, converted into a Grid Card, to allow 3D Gaming on VDI sessions.
Well I'm kind of back into the Arcade and Game computer kick again, this will swap between Media Systems, Home Automation and Game machines.
What should we look forward to?
Well, I'll be upgrading software and hardware on the Arcade here soon. I am in the middle of doing all new graphics and making sure all the games and applications run on the new hardware.
In the Game computer arena, I'll add some new snaps and maybe clips of my Game Computer with the new keyboard and decked out lighting (should give you a good chuckle)
In the Mediacenter / Systems arena, this is starting to slow down a hair; all TVs are up and running, media is imported and functional. I still need to work out some Plex issues and casting issues between devices but I am fairly happy with how it all sits now.
Lastly, for now, in the Home Automation arena, I need to finish up some scripts and events for the new hardware in place (Thermostat and Garage door control). I plan on knocking that out soon and then I can start re-focusing on the Web App to control the house... sigh it never ends.
Slowly but surely I am migrating alot of the work load off my main MediaCenter in the living room. So it can focus primarily on just playing media or games.
I have moved my MyMovies install / DB location onto my "Cascade" server. This same machine also hosts my Plex Media Server and Windows 7 MCE with the ServerWMC addon for Live TV control.
Also, I have updated all my devices to the newest PlexBMC 4.0 Beta and the latest PlexBMC Helper from github, now the PlexBMC Helper is working on Android so all my devices work as I want.
Currently the Living Room MediaCenter now only contains its own Ceton PCIe4 Tuner (may be moved eventually to Cascade in conjunction with its USB4 Tuner), Its own Hauppauge WinTV card (for FM Radio) and its own plugins and recorded TV etc.
This will all eventually go away as I slowly migrate over to Kodi, due to the recent solidified news of MCE not being available in Windows 10. I do have Kodi and Plex installed on the MediaCenter now, and I have plugins to access them from the main menu. I actually swap around between the 3 depending on what I currently want to do.