Most four to five year old machines don’t actually suck and are pretty decent.   But if you’re a tech trying to put together  a lab to play with, you’re probably tight on resources. 

I know I was.

Hyper-V and a modern day machine sure make it easier.  But if you’re trying to build on your skill set and learn clustering, well the average iSCSI device on eBay still isn’t cheap.

Or is it?

With free solutions such as StarWind iSCSI SAN, FreeNAS or the Microsoft iSCSI Software Initiator, there’s no longer an excuse not to have a SAN to play with to practice in a REAL Clustering environment.

Here’s the cool part I ran into.   Most of these 4+ year old machines have x64 technology and can ran Server 2008R2 standard (which is the requirement for Microsoft iSCSI targetting).   A machine such as this (for a Test environment) will more than meet your needs.

Or maybe you need to set up such an environment in the office and the budget isn’t there?

You are no longer tied down to that excuse that “I can’t afford a SAN”.   Grab an old machine and use any of the following solutions

StarWind iSCSI SAN


Microsoft iSCSI Software Initiator

Get your fingers dirty and dip your feet in the “SAN” and enjoy

The Energized Tech