A local accounting firm whom we have consulted with on an on-going basis retained us to bring their infrastructure to the “next level” while keeping their existing hardware in use, rather than replacing all of it.

The original set up was 2 Dell R710’s (domain controller and Exchange server) and a PowerEdge 2900 (terminal server). We brought in a temporary server to convert the 2900 to a virtual machine on. After that, we upgraded the storage capacity in the 2900 and installed a Linux distribution to serve as an iSCSI appliance.

Once this was complete, we converted the two R710 servers to virtual machines on the temporary server as well. Once everything was running smoothly on the temporary server, we installed secondary processors in the R710’s and upgraded them to 96GB RAM each – enough to run the entire office on either one of the servers. XenServer 6.2 was installed onto these, and the VM’s were migrated back. We installed a rackmount 1U QNAP NAS to serve as storage for all of the VM backups as well.

After all of the original VM’s were running back on their original infrastructure, we provisioned an additional terminal server and domain controller for them.

Here is what the servers looked like after project completion:


We also took their patch panels and rewired them with the existing cabling. Unfortunately, I do not have a before picture, but here is an after:


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