Does anyone have much experience in running their primary JSS production server in a virtualized environment? We would like to explore moving in this direction since all of our PC based servers in our organization are. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks much!
A lot of us here run their whole JSS infrastructure virtualised. The predominant solution appears to be either based on Windows Server or Linux beeing virtualised on VMware ESX using standard commodity server hardware. I would not recommend using desktop products like Fusion or VMware Desktop.
We've been migrating JSS from Xserve to whatever the company uses for virtualization for some years now.
It doesn't really matter what platform, since you the team who manages virtual servers to ;)
Just need to provide them with your requirements ("If you update Java without my permission I will cut you", etc.).
I wouldn't put MySQL on a VM, but it's fine to replicate to one.
Depending on your storage solution, might be able to leverage whatever SCCM uses (although might lose HTTP).
The only place we've struggled with our windows VM is trying to match a report workflow we had on our Mac server with 8.x. With 8.x, we had our Mac server set up using the old Report Downloader tool to email us weekly reports. Support is struggling with a way for us to do something similar with 9.x (even though we have the mysql query, it's the email part that seems to be a struggle point).
My experience is that Windows servers give half the performance of Linux for twice the system requirements. (I could be exaggerating slightly here ...)
Our backend is entirely RHEL on various flavours of ESX. Since it was built to the current design, it's been utterly flawless. I agree with @localhorst that running on a desktop virtualisation platform is an exercise in pain unless you're doing it purely as a learning exercise.
Going entirely virtual with JDS and other technologies seems to be the way forward and that is our plan here. Our current xserves will probably not last the year and i've already had more drive failures than I care to count, or think about!
I would strongly agree with @franton that Windows is the less preferable option if you have the choice.
Just a bit of background info: we are running entirely on VMware Cloud Director (ESXi 5.5) in terms of hypervisor and all components of our JAMF infrastructure are running the only try OS named Debian GNU/Linux. @robo did an excellent job writing puppet recipies for all components including NetBoot, JSS, ha_proxy, Apache2, reposado, magerita, and many many more services.
We've also been all virtual for some time to allow our servers to meet our DR requirements. As @localhorst said, run it in a 'real' environment, not a desktop. We are also on ESX vSphere with the SRM option as well for replication/recovery. We are running in Ubuntu Enterprise Server. As @franton mentioned, virtual is the way things are going as we also have JDS's, NetSUS, etc. all in the environment. Once the last Xserve is gone (soon) we'll only have a couple servers not in our virtual environment.
@franton There are no plans yet, as it is very special to our environment, but I will bring it forward to the team. We are starting a major puppet recipe overhaul project Q3 this year. I would hope that as a result the majority of our work would go public.
However, if you are particularly interested in a module for a certain service, please drop me an email and we will see what we can do.