Hardware for virtual home lab


New Member
May 12, 2016
Hello guys,

I am new to VM and especially server hardware. I am planning to build a home lab server (ESXi) that is quiet and small because I am going to have this in my room. I am going to be using this for Cisco, Juniper, Palo Alto labs, and some Linux and Windows VMs to function as servers and host for to be part of the lab. However, I am not sure if the hardware I am going to be using will be able to run maximum of 15 - 20 routers (Cisco CSR1000v or Juniper vMX) or mix with firewalls (Juniper vSRX or Palo Alto VMs).

My budget for the whole home virtual lab is kind of tight ($1200), and these are the motherboards that I'm looking at:
ASRock C2750D4I Mini ITX Server Motherboard

I am not sure which one will give me a better performance. The Supermicro is a Xeon Quadcore CPU with hyperthreading and with a clock speed of 2.2 - 2.6GHz, and the ASRock has Intel Atom Avaton 8 octacore at 2.4 - 2.6GHz.
I will be using SSD for the storage and 64GB of RAM, but my concern is the two system on a chip motherboards if they I can accomplish what I am trying to do with these hardware. If none of these boards would accomplish my goal, please direct me to the proper path.

Thank you