Working on moving all the data back to NFS shares right now. Still not what I wanted, but it’s something I can handle reasonably well with the auto-mounter from the command line, which is probably how things will be done most of the time. And it’s probably more efficient than working through the Finder anyway. I still hope I can get it working, but at the moment, I need to get things running again rather than messing around with data stores. I did a trial run with the XP VM that I actually use to manage the VM Host it’s running on (ah, recursion), and hopefully because of something I did before I migrated, I was unable to log in. There didn’t appear to be any corruption issues with it. It booted just fine and brought me to the login screen, so we’ll see what happens there, and if any issues arise in the other VMs.
As far as the data server changes, all I ended up doing was installing the latest 0.7.2 beta of FreeNAS. Nexenta required additional drives and there were no elegant resolutions, so back to FreeNAS. I have high hopes for FreeNAS 0.8 and am anxiously awaiting new news on that front. This is especially the case now that I’m taking advantage of ZFS datasets. I decided I’d try compression on a VM and an ISO dataset. Since the VM set would be more active and I only have a dual Atom, I went with the ‘lzjb’ algorithm as it was described as ‘fast’. With all my existing VMs migrated to that dataset, I’m getting a compression ratio of 1.45x, which is acceptable, I feel, considering it put a decent load on the CPU at that. (Just did the math and that works out to about 30% savings, very nice.) Since the ISO dataset would mostly be used in a read context and not very often, I decided I’d try to get more compression out of it and went with the ‘gzip’ (equivalent to ‘gzip-6’ according to the comments). Here, the effort was quite wasted, as the resulting ratio was a mere 1.04x, definitely not worth the CPU time. With FreeNAS 0.8 and the move to FreeBSD 8 series, I’ll also be able to pick up dedup, which I would bet would result in a huge gain in free space.
Update: I’m working on a new OS install (Xubuntu) and CPU load is fairly constant at around 10%. This is theoretically doing both ISO decompression and live VM compression. Networking is its usual terrible self, but I am reading and writing from/to the same disk, so I’m not getting the best duplex speeds.