Thread: Completed Servers home lab
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Old June 10, 2013, 08:27 PM
doup93 doup93 is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Montreal, QC
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My System Specs

Default Servers home lab

Iíve been studying for Windows Server 2012 certification (MCSA) since itís been out last fall. One certification is done, two more to go. I set up my first home lab around a KGPE-D16 with two Opteron 6128 (Aeacus: Judge of the Elysium and a H8SGL-F-O with a single Opteron 6128 for studying virtualization and some clustering but quickly found that setup a little limiting for my needs and recently came across some articles about Dellís Poweredge C6100 XS23-TY3. Thinking of the potential, I took the jump and look at what came two weeks ago.

Being server hardware, itís a big box and really heavy. The UPS guy asked me to help him carry the box from his truck to the house. I took it out and put it on my table.

This thing is just awesome. Itís a 2U made of four nodes. Each node can be pulled out independently of the others. Thereís two flavors of the C6100: 12x3.5Ē disks and 24x2.5Ē disks.

Hereís a pic of all nodes pulled out.

Each node comprises two Xeon E5530, 24 GB of RAM (with room for expansion), a LSI SAS 1068E, dual Gbit LAN with one other port for IPMI and four 72 GB 10k RPM drives. Iíve setup two drives in RAID 1 for booting and Iíll use the two others for normal storage.

I also got a model with redundant 1100W power supplies. The one problem with that server: It is LOUD. When you first start one node, itís not too bad but when all four nodes are under full load (aka folding) and Iím standing next to it, it is really loud. Even when I wear my noise canceling headphones (Sennheiser PXC-250ís).

My current setup where I put my hardware is right under my daughtersí bedroom so having this jet engine right below their room blowing in full 24/7 (I can clearly hear it when standing in their room) is not an option so this got me thinking about a cold room we have at home thatís used for storing a bunch of stuff...

And toys for the little ladies...

Once empty, the room measures 4í3Ē by 10í6Ē so gives me ample room to fit my hardware in there.

To make this work, I need shelves (putting stuff on the floor is not an option), cooling, power and LAN.
For shelves, I thought of getting a used server cabinet but the door is only 24 inches wide so it doesnít pass. I couldnít find a used server rack (4 posts type) and brand new was out of my budget (400+$) so I ended up finding some metal shelves on sale at Canadian Tire. These will do for now.

For network connectivity, I found a Netgear GS724T-300NAS on special at NCIX and couldnít pass up the opportunity. So, here it came last week.

This weekend, I cleaned the room up and prepped the concrete for painting.

Stay tuned for moreÖ

Last edited by doup93; September 27, 2013 at 09:51 AM.
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