Skip site navigation (1)Skip section navigation (2)
Date:      Thu, 23 Apr 2020 13:25:17 -0700
From:      David Christensen <>
Subject:   Re: best upgrade process for server
Message-ID:  <>
In-Reply-To: <>
References:  <>

Next in thread | Previous in thread | Raw E-Mail | Index | Archive | Help
On 2020-04-22 21:38, Dale Scott wrote:
> Hi all,
> I'd like suggestions for a new basic server. I'm currently running my website and a number of web apps I use to demo enterprise work processes on a single-disk 11.3 server with a 2nd disk for periodic backups of the web apps and the occasional file system dump. I'm concerned about backups and recovery, and would like replace the server with a new ZFS-based system and a pool of three or four 1T SSDs. I'm not interested in laboring over spec's and tweaking the system out and I'm not storing the world's movie collection. I favor basic, mature parts and minimum time spent making decisions.
> Is the following migration strategy reasonable? Can I restore a dump from my single-disk system to a new bhyve/ZFS system? Can I copy the virtualbox-ose virtual disk file to the new system and bhyve will know what to do? I'm using the virtualbox-ose NAT to remap the vm IP address and port, will bhyve be able to do this?
> Thanks for your recommendations.
> <------------------------------------+
> |
> |
> <--\ +--------+-------+
> <--+ | ERPNext/Linux |
> <--+ +-----------------------------------+
> <--+-----+ Apache/MySQL/PHP | virtualbox|ose |
> +------------------+----------------+
> | FreeBSD 11.3 |
> +-----------------------------------+
> emo (DHCP ISP) | Core2 66000 |
> <-----------------------------------+ 6GB RAM |
> +------+----------------------------+
> |
> +----+ 200G HD - ada0s1a on /
> +----+ 200G HD - ada1p1 on /backup
> <------------------------------------+
> |
> |
> <--\ |
> <--+ |
> <--+ +------------------+ |
> <--+-----+ Apache/MySQL/PHP | |
> +------------------+----------------+
> | FreeBSD 11.3 | ERPNext/Linux |
> +------------------+----------------+
> | bhyve |
> +-----------------------------------+
> emo (DHCP ISP) | ?? CPU |
> <-----------------------------------+ ?? RAM |
> +------+----------------------------+
> |
> \----+ 4x 1T SSD

I have a SOHO LAN with one server for Samba and CVS.  I do not host any 
public services, so as not to saturate my residential WAN connection.  I 
use VPS's for public services.

When it was time to retire my previous desktop/ Linux SOHO server with 
an up-to-date FreeBSD server, I bought a lightly used Dell PowerEdge T30 
with one Xeon E3-1225 v5 processor, one 8 GB ECC memory module, one 1 TB 
SATA HDD, and one DVD+/-RW drive.  (It is important that computers 
running ZFS have ECC memory.)  I removed the 1 TB HDD, added one 8 GB 
ECC memory module, added one 2.5" SSD for the system drive and data 
cache, and added two 3 TB SATA HDD's for data (3 TB mirror).  I find it 
is easier to put the jails on the system drive than to put them into the 
data pool (ZFS property dedup=verify).  Total price was around US$ 700. 
The platform is more than adequate for my needs.

Switching to FreeBSD and ZFS has required a lot of learning and doing. 
The Lucas books were invaluable.  Backups, archives, images, etc., 
required new thinking and new infrastructure (hardware, software, and 
scripts).  I ended up building another server with another 3 TB mirror 
to receive replication streams (US$ 250 and existing parts).

My advice would be to keep your existing server and disaster 
preparedness infrastructure fully functional while you build an 
end-to-end replacement.  There are many learning curves to climb and 
goals to be achieved along the way.  Expect failures, retreats, and 
multiple attempts as you gain experience.  Be prepared for hardware 
failures and operator errors.  Don't be afraid to buy additional 
hardware.  Upgrade to FreeBSD 12.1, if possible.  Use jails, if 
possible.  Put your operating system on a single, small, fast SSD to 
simplify system administration and disaster preparedness (ZFS property 
copies=2).  Build your ZFS pools from mirrored devices.  I would start 
with two drives for data and VM's.  If you anticipate needing more 
space, start with larger drives.  If you later require more space and/or 
performance, stripe another equal-sized mirror onto the pool.  Using all 
SSD's should give excellent performance, but HDD's with fast cache 
and/or ZIL devices might be a viable alternative (depending upon workload).


Want to link to this message? Use this URL: <>