***DISCLAIMER : this not supported, not certified configuration, probably not very stable environment depending of your hardware configuration, this is ONLY for training and learning purpose, if something goes wrong, don't complain***
Oracle VM template for Peoplesoft is very nice, very useful for all customers who want to have a DEMO database and/or a SAND database to play around.
A DEMO database is always interesting to host on client side to be able to reproduce the bugs encountered in production regarding standard components.
A DEMO database is also the best way to learn Peoplesoft (as a developer, or administrator).
So, I think everyone needs it, test and play around those templates.
There are three Oracle VM templates, all based on OEL5.2 64-bit, HCM9.1, Peopletools8.50.02: one for the database server, one for the application and batch server, the last one for the webserver (PIA - Weblogic 11gR3).
Well, Oracle VM is a good tool, but you'll need to dedicate one of your server to host Oracle VM Server and your virtual machines.
If like me, you don't have any spare server, or you don't want to sacrify one, or just want to see, there is a solution... a little bit weird, I agree, but there is.
I have a Dell server PE2900III (with a quite large amount of RAM and HD space) based on CentOS5.4, which already manages a lot of virtual machines within VMWare Server v2.0.2. I don't have other available server and don't want to remove everything.
VMWare Server is nice, pretty easy to use (without any strong knowledge of VM), free and a stable virtualization software.
There are some limitations (hey, it's free) :
the RAM per virtual machine cannot be higher than 3600Mb (added on the 03-JAN-2010 : this is not true anymore on VMWare 2.x - unfortunately, I discovered it too late for this config, I could avoid one VMWare image by embedding all the Oracle VM Server into the same VMWare image), the number of CPU cannot be higher than 2.
Those limitations are problematic in our case, the requirements for the three templates we want are indeed bigger : for the database server 2Gb RAM and 2CPU, for the application and batch server 1gb RAM and 2 CPU and finally the webserver requires 1Gb RAM and 1CPU. In total, 4Gb and 5CPU...
So I decided to cut it in two pieces (two VMWare images), prepare an spreadsheet, there are a lot of machines and IP addresses to be configure (not less than 6 in total : 3 for VMWare images, 3 for Oracle VM images) :
=> one for the database server (2560Gb RAM and 2CPU defined) - VMWare image 2 in schema below
=> one other for application and batch server and webserver all together (2560Gb RAM, 2CPU defined) - VMWare image 3 in schema below
To complete the picture, and it is optional if you are good enough to manage the Oracle VMs within command lines, but I'll add an other VMware image for the Oracle VM Manager (installed on OEL5.4) - VMWare image 1 in schema below
And finally, I'd like to get something like the following (I hope the picture will be self-explanatory) :
In orange : VMWare Server product or images
In red : named Oracle product installed in VMWare images
In blue : Peoplesoft VMs in Oracle VM images
We can get a working environment without breaking anything in the existing environment, just the VMWare images containing Oracle VMs are started when needed, and depending of your server don't wait for performance.
An other keypoint I did not mentioned so far, is the required disk space, (60Gb for the database, 15Gb for application and batch server, 8Gb for webserver), it is reasonnable sizes nowadays, but you could always use some external hard drive and mount file system as NFS point (need to be defined on the server pool side).
There are some tricky parts I'll describe later, including to get a working VMWare 2.0.2 on CentOS5.4 (it was crashing, hanging after being few minutes up and running), some memory configuration on the Oracle VM images to be done, some specific configuration on database and App/Batch servers, but finally everything is working fine as described in the schema above.
Please, read the following :
- VMWare 2.0.2 on CentOS 5.4
- PSOVM : VMWare configuration
- PSOVM : Oracle VM install/config
- PSOVM : Database
- PSOVM : App/Batch
- PSOVM : PIA
- PSOVM : Batch posting