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Install Proxmox VE on Intel NUC or other mini PC

Well, after the problems with the SD card on the Raspberry Pi I decided to buy an Intel NUC to host my Domotica, but an Intel NUC dedicated only to running software that can work without problems on a Raspberri Pi seemed like a waste of resources.

In my work we have most of the systems virtualized and the experience is very positive so I thought why not do the same at home. The problem is that the software I use at work is VMware ESXi and officially it only supports XEON processors. It is possible to install it on an Intel NUC by modifying some files before running the installation, I installed it before installing Proxmox VE but it needs more resources to run smoothly, also Proxmox VE is open source software and this is a Homelab 😁.

What is Proxmox VE

Proxmox Virtual Environment, or Proxmox VE, is an open-source server virtualization environment based on Debian with a modified kernel. It includes a web interface and it is also possible to access through the command line.

We could say that Proxmox VE s an “operating system” that is installed on a physical server to make the most of the hardware for creating virtual machines.

Hardware Requirements:

  • 64-bit CPU (Intel or AMD) with virtualization technology support (Intel VT o AMD-V)
  • At least 8GB of RAM (I recommend 16GB or more)
  • HDD/SSD
  • 1x ethernet interface (if the mini PC has at least two you can install, for example, a firewall/router such as pfSense)

Preparing the USB with the installation files

Let’s start by downloading the latest version of Proxmox VE from its download page. We will also need some software to create the boot system on the USB, you can use Etcher or Rufus; I have used the first one.

Note: If you use Rufus do not forget to use the DD mode.

Once the Proxmox VE ISO image is downloaded, we will connect a USB memory of at least 4GB to the computer. We will execute Etcher and select the ISO image, the USB memory and click on “Flash!” Once this process is finished we will have the USB memory ready.

Installing Proxmox VE

We will make sure that the BIOS of our mini PC is configured correctly so that the first boot device is the USB memory. In addition, in some BIOSes it is also necessary to activate the virtualization technology; on my Intel NUC these settings are as follows:

  • Performance > Processor > Hyper-Threading
  • Performance > Processor > Intel Turbo Boost Technology

We will restart the mini PC with the USB memory connected and if we have executed the previous steps correctly the installation should begin.

We will select the first option, Install Proxmox VE, to execute a standard installation.

In the next window we will be asked to select the hard drive or hard drives that we want to use for Proxmox VE.

Next we will configure the country, the time zone and the keyboard layout that we want to use. The installation usually detects them automatically.

Now we will have to create the Administrator password (root user) and give an email address where we will receive notifications from Proxmox VE.

Finally we will have to configure the network parameters (host name, IP address, network mask, gateway and DNS server).

After filling in the network parameters, on the next screen, we will see a summary of what was configured in the previous screens. If everything is correct we will press the “Install” button.

Now the installation will format the hard drives and install the necessary packages. Once the installation is finished we will disconnect the USB memory from the mini PC and restart it.

Accessing Promox VE

Well, we already have Proxmox VE installed, now we can access it through our web browser using the address https://ProxmoxVE_IP_Address:8006. The default user is root (in the PAM realm) and the password is the one we defined during the installation.

In future posts we will see how to configure different aspects of this software.

If you have made it this far, thank you very much! If you have any questions, do not hesitate to leave them in the comments and I will do my best to help.

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Note: I have used the images from the official page of Proxmox VE (https://pve.proxmox.com/wiki/Installation) to show the installation progress.

2 thoughts on “Install Proxmox VE on Intel NUC or other mini PC”

  1. Hi!
    I found your excellent article on installation proxmox on a NUC.
    I am thinking about replacing ESXi with proxmox.
    Which model of NUC are you running it on? I wonder because I do not know if mine is supported.

    Kind regards
    Rikard

    1. Hi Rikard,

      I have a NUC8i3BEH, with an i3 CPU, 16GB RAM and 500GB M2 SSD.
      According to their website almost any computer should be compatible.

      Minimum Hardware (for testing only)
      CPU: 64bit (Intel EMT64 or AMD64)
      Intel VT/AMD-V capable CPU/Mainboard (for KVM Full Virtualization support)
      Minimum 1 GB RAM
      Hard drive
      One NIC

      Best regards

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