Why Even Ask?

“I have some questions about the VMware environment you spec’ed out for us.”

“Sure, what’s up?”

“Well, you suggested a separate server for the management machine, to run VirtualCenter. Couldn’t we run that in VMware itself?”

“I suppose you could, but I think you’d get some chicken-and-egg problems by having the management box inside the managed infrastructure. Personally I think it’s worth the extra money to just avoid them.”

“So yes, we can.”

A big difference between me a year ago and me now is that if people are going to do dumb things against my recommendations I don’t put up much of a fight. My trying to convince them to do the right thing just made them upset with me, because they’re right and I’m wrong and how would I know what they need anyhow I’m just a consultant. So they build it their way, it doesn’t work, and then I get to bill them for the time fixing it. Plus then I didn’t inadvertently make an idiot look like he knew what he was doing.

“Sure. I wouldn’t do it that way but it’s your cluster. You should probably check to make sure VMware supports that.”

“Okay, cool. And why did you suggest three quad CPU machines? Could we do this with two dual CPU machines?”

“Well, yeah, but looking at your workload it seemed like three bigger machines were in order.”

“Money is a little tight and I thought we could cut some of this out because it didn’t seem necessary.”

“I understand, but VMware doesn’t magically make your workloads less intensive, it just lets you manage them better in combination with the hardware. If you need eight CPUs you need eight CPUs. Plus you need some extra room so you can move the VMs around if you need to do maintenance on the physical servers.”

“Okay… extra room… yeah… so do we really need all this storage hardware?”

“If you want to be able to move the running VMs between the physical machines with VMotion, yes.”

“Well, I think we could just use local storage.”

Whatever, pal. Have your boss call me when it doesn’t work.

2 thoughts on “Why Even Ask?”

  1. Oh I know that feeling, all you can do is ensure you wave a big sign up saying “Caution: Serious levels of stupidity beyond this point.”, so you they can’t accuse you of not mentioning it to them earlier.

    They’ll accuse you of it anyway, but at least you’ll have the sign. 😉

  2. I hate seeing things blow up, but there is only so much an admin can do if folks don’t want to listen. You hit the nail on the head. Stay mellow, provide recommendations, and become the hero when you fix the brokeness. 🙂

    – Ryan

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