Hi all looking for some advice, i recently started a student placement with a CSP company and very quickly realizing that i know nothing, i finish my degree in may and have saw just how much i lack in what to do with virtualization. Ill actually be firing in the general or serious section for advice on this as overall im a little lost on what i want to do tbh, career wise and education wise im just a tad lost these days. I plan on signing up and getting my azure certs and stuff but feel i really need to get a grasp of vmwares ESXi and vsphere platforms and get more familiar with using them and setting up remote connections and such. Anyhow, i dont have a large house and certainly don't think i could fit a rack anywhere but looking to put it to some form of use in multiple ways as well as let me learn what i need to do. So im a little stuck as im looking at desktop form factors over rack stuff, looking at old dual xeon machines just for alot of memory and cheap large core count. My personal uses for it will be -Media server -Camera server -Game Server (minecraft / valhiem/ rust) But i need to build something that i can throw up maybe between 5-10 vms to play with lans, vlans, pfsense and more. My question is, ive been looking at alot of old machines with xeon x1234 based cpus, dual ones, like the hp z600 and 800s, but also came across some of the intel 12-14 core cpus for about 100 quid on the likes of ebay, but buying a board for them seems also expensive and problematic, but then again seems to be some cool alternatives on ali express, and ddr3 is super cheap. So wondering if best to try build something from scratch or pick up an old prebuild workstation and go from there. Im not trying to break the bank for this, maybe couple hundred ish, i have about 20is tb of hard drives i can use lying here now which are sata based and ddr3 looks like it can be obtained fairly cheap, altho not sure on ecc or non ecc yet.