Building a Hyperion Home Lab: Putting It All Together
Before we get started, here’s the entire series in case you need to look back (or ahead):
- Introduction and Choosing Your Hypervisor
- Choosing Your Processor
- Choosing Your Motherboard
- Choosing Your Memory
- Choosing Your Chassis and Power Supply
- Choosing Your Storage
- Putting It All Together
- The Build and Installing ESXi
Now that we’ve made it through all of the different components, let’s summarize everything so that we can get a clear view of the total budget and what exactly it is that we get for the money we are spending.
Our final selections are summarized in a table below each of budget options, so I’ll try to just re-cap each option.
Desktop High Buget
For our high budget option, we are looking at higher end of consumer hardware. We have a high end desktop Intel processor (4 cores and 8 threads), a feature-filled motherboard, 64 GB of RAM, 1 TB of SATA SSD storage, 512 GB of NVMe SSD storage, and 4 TB of back-up storage. All of this leaves us with a total of $1,927.18. Here are the details:
Desktop Medium Budget
We have two options for our medium budget. They both provide a upper-end Intel processor (4 cores, 4 threads), the same mid-range motherboard, 1 TB of SATA SSD storage, 256 GB of NVMe SSD storage, and 3 TB of back-up storage. The difference between the two is memory. Both offer up 32 GB of RAM, but the more expensive option two chooses to use two 16 GB modules instead of four 8 GB modules. The price difference is relatively low with option one coming in at $1,248.91 and option two (which is again expandable to 64 GB in the future) coming in at $1,298.92.
Details for option 1:
Details for option 2:
Desktop Low Budget
For our low budget desktop, we’ll stick with a single option. This option provides a lower-end but still quad core processor, a lower-end motherboard, only 16 GB of RAM, and a single 3 TB hard drive. The upside is that this can easily support an SSD and an upgrade to 32 GB of RAM for a moderate increase in price. But, as optioned, we’re looking at $499.94. I didn’t even plan on that being under $500…
Server High Budget
Now on to the fun stuff…servers. Our high end server was intended for the audience that wants brand new hard ware on the latest server technology. This gives us a pair of six-core processors (with 12 threads), 128 GB of DDR4 RAM, a fancy hot-swap case that supports 24 drives, 1 TB of SATA SSD storage, 400 GB of Enterprise-class NVMe SSD storage, and 4 TB of back-up storage. All for the low, low price of $3,769.90. The parts list in all of its glory:
Server Medium Budget
Ok…now that we have the insanely expensive option of the way, we can go back to reasonable. So how do we get the performance of insanely expensive but the price of a desktop machine? Head to Ebay for processors and RAM, and then get all new hardware for everything else. What we end up with are two options. Both options include a pair of eight-core processors (with 16 threads), a nice dual processor motherboard with quad-gigabit lan, 1 TB of SATA SSD storage, 400 GB of NVMe SSD storage, and 3 TB of back-up storage.
With option one, we have chosen to go with lower cost 8 GB modules for a total of 128 GB of RAM and a desktop case. The total price for this option is $1,849.94. For option two, we swap out the 8 GB modules for 16 GB modules and throw it into a 4U rackmount case. The total price for this option is $2,721.94.
Details for option 1:
Details for option 2:
Compared to the high server budget, either option is practically a steal. For almost $2,000 less, we get the same memory capacity (albeit DDR3) and more processor cores (albeit a little slower and a little hotter). So the question is…do you really need new an shiny that much? Only you can decide. I’ve built both (new and shiny, and Ebay Frankenstein), so I get it. I have both sitting in my home lab and I can say I’m actually very happy with both systems. With the options available now..I’m going with Ebay Frankenstein.
Server Low Budget
For our low budget server, we get a quad core single socket Xeon processor (with 4 threads), 32 GB of RAM (expandable to 64 GB for $229.98), 1 TB of SATA SSD storage, and 3 TB of back-up storage. Not bad for $1,180.41. The parts list:
Finally, and most tiny, we have our tiny sever option. This server packs a huge punch in a little package and a decent cost. We get a quad core processor (with 8 threads), 64 GB of RAM (expandable to 128 GB for $479), 1 TB of SATA SSD storage, and 3 TB of back-up storage. Again, not bad for $1,504.94. Check out the tiny parts list:
So which server will you build?
I hope this series has been helpful for those of you really interested in a Hyperion Home Lab. Now we can get back to Powershell and some of the great things I have planned for my home lab.