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  1. #1
    Regular Coder Exis's Avatar
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    Building a Server!

    So I am building a server computer from scratch on paper so I can compare it to the pre-fab 1u and 2u+ designs. Anyway, for the processor itself I wanted to know how important the front side bus speed was. Should 400mhz be enought for a company of 10, or should I go with the 800mhz? Why or why not?

    Thanks guys -

  • #2
    Senior Coder JamieR's Avatar
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    Well 400mhz should be enough I would have thought, however I think most of the new Xeons have a FSB of 800mhz. Higher the better I say .

    800 will give you more raw processing power than a 400mhz FSB, but for only 10 computers 400 should be fine.

    BTW What's the server going to be used for? Hosting a domain etc or just a file/application/print server?
    Last edited by JamieR; 08-19-2005 at 12:14 AM.

  • #3
    Regular Coder Exis's Avatar
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    The thing will mostly be used for a file/print server. Programs wont totally run off of it, at least not ones that will take up a ton of memory. I am gonna buy two 160 gig SATA HDDs and put them in a RAID-1 setup. Right now the servers processor has a 100-ish FSB, so I thought a noticible change would project itself in a 400.

  • #4
    Senior Coder JamieR's Avatar
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    Okay..what processor are you gonna use?

  • #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Exis
    The thing will mostly be used for a file/print server.
    *snip*
    Right now the servers processor has a 100-ish FSB, so I thought a noticible change would project itself in a 400.
    Do you have money burning in your pockets? As a file and print server you do not need to upgrade. Especially if there are only 10 people in the company. Then again you might have other needs but by the needs reflected in this post it appears as though you are upgrading just to upgrade, and I am sure this money could be used wisely else where.
    Note: I do not test code. I just write it off the top of my head. There might be bugs in it! But if any thing I gave you the overall theory of what you need to accomplish. Also there are plenty of other ways to accomplish this same thing. I just gave one example of it. Other ways might be faster and more efficient.

  • #6
    Regular Coder Exis's Avatar
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    The server we currently use is going down hill, and I would like to do some minor upgrading, as well as set up some room for future growth while we are spending some money on replacing old equipment. The server hard drive we have now (just 1) is only 20GB, and it keeps topping off. I figure we just get a s-load of storage and try to run from there, and then with a RAID-1 config, we can be protected from loss of data. I would also like to get a mobo that can function with dual processors, just incase we need to advance in the future.

    But now you got me thinking....

    What if I just bought a new mobo for the current processor (as all our other old ones are dying right after another), 2 new HDDs for a RAID-1 Setup, and some more ram to bring the thing up to speed (it only runs 256MB now). We do host a few apps on the server used by everyone, so I thought maybe a whole new setup was needed, but I would like to save the money if I can. I got my whole 1st setup on new egg priced out to be 799.49, but then I need to buy MS Server 2003 with 10 licenses...and that will add up.

    Now help me out...what do you think. Will I be safe with a new mobo, 2 new HDDs, and a little upgrade on the RAM? This would save about $500!

    Thanks for the insight Spirit...not sure why i was so hell-bent on getting a super-server .

  • #7
    Senior Coder JamieR's Avatar
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    What are the current processor(s) and speed? You might be better off upgrading it depending if the CPU(s) is/are fairly fast.

  • #8
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    If the server is as old as you are making it sound (100fsb, 20gig drives, 256 ram) I am thinking abour 5-6 years old.

    You are completely better buying a new processor. But why does this need to be so expencive? Again you are not really doing any thing special. Nothing hard core. Get a cheap AMD. You do not need a dual chip for this type of system. If you where running a heavy DB then I would suggest it. I would suggest taking care of ram though. The most expencive part of this is going to be that stupid M$ licence. Can you get away with linux? There might be a learning curve but it will cheapen things alot.
    Note: I do not test code. I just write it off the top of my head. There might be bugs in it! But if any thing I gave you the overall theory of what you need to accomplish. Also there are plenty of other ways to accomplish this same thing. I just gave one example of it. Other ways might be faster and more efficient.

  • #9
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    The amount of functionality and money lost by my current place of employ due to the unwillingness to look at Linux is astounding.
    Once I thought I was wrong but I was mistaken.

  • #10
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    Yeah, you don't need a killer processor for a file server, that kind of stuff simply doesn't take very much processing power, it'd be better to spend that money towards better/faster hard drives. Maybe run dual network card and use load balancing to help throughput as well.
    OracleGuy

  • #11
    Regular Coder Exis's Avatar
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    Here are some system stats I pulled to help you guys out with advising me :

    Mobo: MSI MS-6340 (2 RAM Slots, 1gig max of pc 133)
    RAM: Currently 256 MB of PC 133

    HDD: 1x 7k rpm Seagate 20gig

    Processor: AMD Athlon 1.4GHz with 104.3 MHz DDR FSB (Edit: Socket A )

    Our Office is Wi-Fi, and the server is currently only plugged into 1 port on it. Would it speed things up if I bought a gigabit card and ran cords through both ethernet ports into the router? I have never really been around a setup like that...any important details I need to know about operating like that?

  • #12
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    That system should be fine, maybe upgrade the memory to at least 512mb, maybe go to a gig if you want.

    And yes you could run dual network cards and plug them both into the same switch. However, if you have a switch with gigabit ports on it already or are getting one, you'd only need 1 gigabit network card to do the job fine. The two network cards would be more adventagous when you are only running 10/100 since theoretically the drives can transfer faster than that and it'd be the bottle neck.

    You could easily buy a Serial ATA controller card and put some new hard drives in that thing for storing data, maybe use the existing hard drive as the system drive.

    It'd be inexpensive and work quite well.

    I've been using a Pentium 4 1.8GHz willamete core system with Windows 2000 server as a file server for a long time and it even does BT stuff and it can handle quite a few people at once drawing stuff of it no problem. It is a tad slow only because I used hard drives that were just lying around aka free and not all of them support the latest transfer speeds. However it is do for a major upgrade at the end of the month, it has been maxed out again, lol. Going to push it up into the terabyte range when it gets done.
    OracleGuy

  • #13
    Senior Coder JamieR's Avatar
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    I've been using a 1.2ghz Athlon with 1.25GB ram and 3 hard disks (120gb, 40gb, 30gb) for a while now...I need few more hard disks, and I'm gonna replace the motherboard but it's been fine. 2000 Server runs great on it.

  • #14
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    For what you're doing...

    I'm currently running an Athlon 2400+, a 10gig 7200 RPM IDE hard drive for windows, +3x 74 gig raptors striped w/ parity at 10k RPMs and a gig of RAM. I consider this overkill for the 40-50 people in my office. So take these specs and go from there, just bear in mind that your actual mileage may vary. We did have a small problem with drive space when someone figured out how to get around the roadblocks that had been in place when I took over the position with their P2P crapware. That person has since been fired and quotas have been turned on. Also, roadblocks are up to my standards. I dare someone to put that crapware on their computer now! *tee-hee* Excuse me while I go calm down now.


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