Several months ago we migrated our Netware 6.5sp7 servers from physical
servers to VM's running on VMWare ESX 3.5. We've had issues with the
configuration ever since (file open operations that take five minutes when
they should take 30 seconds, SCSI timeout errors crashing pools, and the
such.) One of the benefits of this virtual environment is that if I should
decide to "rebuild" my netware server environment, creating new servers and
assigning access to virtual disk space is relatively easy. So right now, I'm
thinking about "building" a new NW server within my VM environment, and
consolidating all the data from the old servers into the new one.

The Netware VM's reside within datastores on an HP MSA 23xx SAN.

So, if I am going to create a new NW server VM in VMware and add it to my
existing tree, should I use the Netware 6.5sp8 install DVD, or OES 2 Linux?
Which appears to run "better" on VMware ESX 3.5?

Next, the data I need to consolidate can be broken down roughly into four
groups: Accounting files (20G), Documents (400G), Desktop Publishing (100G)
and CAD files (1250G). Each would be assigned to it's own NW volume.

What makes more sense? Create a single datastore on the SAN big enough to
hold a pool that could accomodate ALL of the volumes, so that everything
accessed by this new Netware server runs within a single datastore/pool? Or
create individual datastores for each of the aforementioned groups (eg
create a 20G datastore, configure it as the ACCOUNTING pool and Volume, do
the same for each of the other volumes.)

I'd think that by breaking up the volumes into individual datastores that
I'd minimize problems with too many IO operations on a single datastore.

Oh, and lastly ... we purchased Netware 6.5 when it was service pack zero,
many moons ago. So our NW licences are "old". If I want to install the
latest OES Linux variant, will it work with my old NW/eDir licences? Or will
I need to purchase new licences?

I look forward to your comments and suggestions.