Best settings for VM on ESXi



  • Hi

    I've recently set up a ESXi lab consisting of a Xeon-D 1518 w/ 32 Gigs of ram and 4 NICs for a home w/ gigabit internet and want to try using it to install pfsense and use my ASUS as a WiFi/Switch only.

    I do a lot of bittorrent and will host some remote streaming (via either Emby or Plex) - what would be the best core/ram allocation for a vm machine?  Rest of my network is typical home network - handful of IoT, laptops, and phones (at any given time about 10 devices).

    Packages I'll be running or OpenVPN (max of 1 client, me), Snort, and Squid (open to suggestions!) - Thanks!


  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    Snort and squid are pretty pointless for a "home"  Do you have experience with IPS/IDS - are you going to spend the time to tweak the rules of snort so your not flooded with false positives?

    Do you have kids your trying to filter from p0rn or something - proxy not going to buy you much other than problems ;)

    Its a VM - doesn't really need a whole lot.. Start with say Gig, move up from there if you run into problems.  But if your not running hungry packages like snort or proxy then you will find you don't need much of ram or space…

    Torrent and remote streaming don't really play nice together to be honest.  your going to have 2 contenders for your upload pipe.. Is your gig internet symmetrical ie gig/gig up/down?  Your torrents could suck up that gig up in a heartbeat if not managed.

    To me if you want to torrent - just get a seed box..  Let it do all your grabbing and seeding - them moving the files down to your network will be few seconds if you have gig down, etc.  Thats just me maybe ;)



  • Hey thanks for the reply, lots to think about.  Yes my connection is symmetrical gig.

    In regards to Snort it's mainly just for toying around - there is nothing on my network I need to block but I'm just more curious where my traffic goes - maybe there is a better package for that?

    For Squid - I don't want it for the cache ability but for the reverse proxy.  I want various subdomains (of my main domain) to go to different VM's - maybe that's not the right package?



  • I think you can use HAProxy or Squid for reverse proxy. I'm using Squid on my pfSense VM, and it just works. I have also configured a task to create and update the Let'sEncrypt certificates for my HTTPS webpages, you should take a look at the ACME package for that.

    As for the VM config. 1 core and 2GB of RAM will probably be enough. Remember that you can oversize the RAM without penalties, there is no negative impact in doing so. But if  you don't require more than 1 vCPU, don't give it 2 "just in case". The penalty for having to schedule 2 vCPU when there is no need is measurable.


  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    Not sure why you think snort is going to tell you were your going ;)  Seems like someone has never used a IPS/IDS ;)  while its great to play with - its going to flood you with lots and lots of NOISE!!  There is going to be a shitton of false positives for sure out of the gate until you trim down the rules, etc.

    You prob have better luck finding what kind of traffic stuff is generating by just logging your dns queries ;)  If your interested..



  • @johnpoz:

    Not sure why you think snort is going to tell you were your going ;)  Seems like someone has never used a IPS/IDS ;)  while its great to play with - its going to flood you with lots and lots of NOISE!!  There is going to be a shitton of false positives for sure out of the gate until you trim down the rules, etc.

    You prob have better luck finding what kind of traffic stuff is generating by just logging your dns queries ;)  If your interested..

    Ak, K.  My Asus router has pretty graphics that logs how much each device and application is using traffic. I thought Snort could do that but it sounds like a bigger pain then its worth.



  • What type of throughput did you see on this setup? I'm looking at doing something similar.


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