Update - Been Busy

It’s been a while since I last posted to this blog, so I figured I would post an update.  I have been very busy lately working to complete my internship requirements to graduate from college while also studying for the MCITP Enterprise Administrator exam.  I should have the latter done in a week or two and will begin studying for the CCNP Route exam.

I have added some new equipment to the lab, including a Dell 4220 42u server rack, Cisco 2821, and another 16gb RAM to my server bringing it to 32gb.

The rack was an absolute necessity.  All of my gear was more or less scattered around not plugged in; I needed a way to efficiently store and power it.  I found the rack locally with the Cisco 2821 and a 10,000 kVa Tripp-Lite 240v SmartOnline UPS for $400.  I could not pass that up.  The rack itself was in great shape, it just had a lot of sheet rock dust on it and needed to be washed.  After washing it with a garden hose, sponge and car soap in my driveway, it cleaned up real nice and was ready to hold my gear.  I grabbed up two power strips from Monoprice with integrated cable management and mounted them neatly in the rear of the rack where the expensive PDU’s would normally go.

The Cisco 2821 still had a config on it when I got it so I confreg 0x2142’ed it and wiped her clean to confirm she worked.  After doing that, I opened it up, blew a lot of dust out of it and dropped an extra 512mb RAM into it.  While doing so, I saw that it had an AIM-VPN module installed in it leading me to believe that it shipped as a 2821 w/sec package.  Sweet deal!  This thing will likely play a nice role when it comes time to mess with VoIP since it is now my only Cisco piece with that capability.

The server RAM I found on eBay.  Four 4Gb DDR2 FB-DIMM’s for $150.  That was another deal I found hard to pass on, especially being that my main usage of the server is for virtualization and labs.  RAM is probably the most critical component of a virtual server for a home lab.  Anyone who has ever run Exchange in a lab or production environment knows just how demanding it can be, especially of RAM.  After stress testing the server, I concluded the RAM is good, so it was definitely a good deal.


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