It has been a long time since I had a stationary PC.
The idea is to build a single physical machine, capable of running several operating systems simultaneously, each of them having direct access to its hardware. This task is achievable with Xen hypervisor, using PCI passthroug.
3 VMs are planned:
- Dom0 Linux - Host OS, having direct access to all hardware, used as primary Linux machine. Should use MB onboard VGA, one of USB controllers for keyboard/mouse, and one of gigabit Ethernet controllers. Debian Wheezy.
- DomU HVM Win7 - HVM (fully virtualised) guest, with VT-d PCI pass-throug for secondary VGA, second USB controller for keyboard/mouse, and second gigabit Ethernet controller. Microsoft Windows 7.
- DomU PV Linux - Paravirtualised Linux guest, running headless (no pass-through and access to phisical VGA or keyboard/mouse), acting as server. Debian Wheezy.
Both VGA adapters and USB controllers connected to KVM, to share single monitor,keyboard and mouse.
Hardware requirements: Intel VT-d / IOMMU support in CPU, Motherboard, BIOS and GPU.
Parts (list was influenced heavily by local availability):
- MB: ASRock Z87 EXTREME6 (link)
- CPU: Intel Core i5-4570, Quad Core, up to 3.60GHz, 6MB cache, LGA1150, 84W (link)
- RAM: DDR3 Kingston HyperX Black 16GB (2x8GB) (link)
- CASE: Fractal Design Define R4 Black Pearl (link)
- PSU: Fractal Design Integra R2 750W (link)
- CPU cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo (link)
- SSD: Samsung 840 Evo 120GB SATA3, 540/410MBs, 7mm (link)
- HDD: 2x WD Red WD20EFRX 3.5" 2TB SATA3 64MB IntelliPower (link)
- GPU: Asus AMD Radeon HD6450 EAH6450 SILENT/DI/1GD3(LP) (link)
- KVM: Edimax EK-UAK2 2 Ports USB KVM Switch (link)
- some high-end GPU to play with math/crypto