Oracle 11gR2 2-node RAC on Windows 2008 on VMware Workstation 9 – Part I

Time Required: 30 minutes

Class Materials:

  • 50GB of free disk
  • An operational VMware Workstation 9 or later install
  • Windows Server 2008R2 64-bit install media

To create our Oracle RAC database on Windows on VMware Workstation 9, we first need to create a Windows VM.

I am using an ISO image of Windows Server 2008R2 that I downloaded from MSDN. An MSDN subscription offers developers the opportunity to test out different technologies from Micorosft for development purposes.

We are going to run a basic OS install and then customize for the needs of Oracle RAC. At various points we will have the opportunity to clone the VM and make backups.

Okay, to begin, let’s fire up VMware Workstation and create a new VM.

From the main VMware Workstation menu, select File->New Virtual Machine. We are going to create a Custom (advanced) VM.

Select Custom (Advanced) for our new VM

On the next screen we confirm that our new VM will be compatible with Workstation 9.0.

The new VM will be compatible with Workstation 9.0

On the next screen we point the installer at our ISO DVD image containing the Windows Server 2008 software.

On the next screen we select the version of Windows we are installing. VMware Workstation has already detected that the ISO is Windows Server 2008 R2 Datacenter. It also asks us for the Windows activation key and a first account to create.

I am not going to enter the activation key at this point. But I will go ahead and create an oracle account named “oracle”. This first account will automatically be added to the Administrator group in Windows. Set an easy to remember password and click Next.

On the next screen we name our VM. I am going to continue the opera theme of my Linux RAC but this time I am going to use La Boheme as my inspiration. I am going to name my first Windows VM Rodolfo. The second node later on will be named Mimi. Obviously you may choose whatever names you like.

VMware Workstation allows us to set the location for the VM files. Since this is a Windows laptop, VMs are created in the user’s Documents area in a sub-directory called Virtual Machines.

We can specify the location of our VM files at this point. The default is in the user’s Documents directory.

Next we select the number of processors for our VM. Since this is for demonstration purposes only, a single vCPU and core is fine here. We don’t want to over tax the host machine.

Next we set the amount of RAM for our new VM. In this example I set it to 3GB. RAC on Windows requires a minimum of 2.5GB and I have run into problems with less than 3GB per node.

Remember you will end up with two of these machines running concurrently, so be sure not to exceed your physical RAM. Since I have 8GB of RAM on my laptop, I am comfortable giving the VMs 3GB each.

Remember that you will have two VMs running concurrently. Make sure the combined VRAM does not exceed your physical RAM.

Next we set the networking option. We will to revisit this later on for the RAC, but for now we can select “Use Bridged Networking”. This will allow our VM to have its own IP on the network and should allow you to access the Internet from inside the VM. Since I am deploying this on a laptop, that IP will change as I travel, but that’s okay.

A bridged network adapter will allow us to access the internet from inside our VM.

Next we add a SCSI controller. Again we will revisit this later on, but for now we can select the recommended LSI Logic SAS option.

Next we add a SCSI disk to our VM. Each of our two RAC VMs will eventually have a local disk each, plus access to shared disks, but for now we can simply “Create a new virtual disk”.

Next we select SCSI as the disk type.

Next we size the new disk at 40GB and select “Split virtual disk into multiple files”. At the end of the install the new disk will actually be about 8GB, but sizing it larger allows us to install the Oracle binaries later on.

Splitting the disk into multiple smaller parts allows us some flexibility in backing up the files later.

Next we specify the disk file name. VMware Workstation likes to name the disk file using the same name as the VM. Although this allows disks from multiple VMs to live in the same directory, the names start to get very unwieldy, especially if you later add a second and third disk. I prefer to name the local disk “boot disk” and keep the local disk in the same directory as the other VM files. Be sure to add the vmdk extension so you can identify the files as VM disk files later on.

The default names get cumbersome when you have multiple local disks.

Finally we are ready to create our new VM. If everything looks good, click the Finish button to start the Easy Install process.

VMware Workstation will now load the Windows Server 2008 operating system into your new VM as well as handle all initial start up tasks such as setting time zones, setting security policy, partitioning the local disk, installing VMware tools and so on.

If we are successful, at the end of the process we should be presented with the Windows login screen:

Now would be a great time to shut down the new VM and make a clone to be kept for future uses.

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