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Old July 11, 2013, 05:52 PM
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Default New Server Build.

I've decided that i'm going to make my own server.

I plan to do a Dual Processor LGA 2011 build. My plans so far are:

2xE5-2620's
I'm still looking for a motherboard, MUST BE ATX/E-ATX. Also must have onboard Graphics.
Planning 32GB of RAM, 16GB/CPU. 2x8Gb configuration. 1333Mhz ECC
2x Hyper 212+ EVO
I'm thinking an AX860?
NZXT Phantom 820, already own.
4x4TB WD RED drives.
Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB SSD. Boot drive.
Winders Server 2012.

The plan for this server build is to learn. The entire goal of this project is to learn. I want to learn how server programs work. How server equipment works. I also wish to learn VM's. I also plan to use this as a server to back up everything on all my computers, thus the large storage.

I know i don't need any of this, an I3 and some hard drives would work just fine. However i want this.

If any of y'all could help that'd be great.
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Macbook Pro: Core i5 2.5Ghz turbo to 3.1Ghz, 16GB 1600Mhz OWC Memory, 120GB SAMSUNG 840 EVO.

ASUS P8Z77-V, 8GB Corsair Vengeance Black CL9 @1600Mhz, 3570K Stock, Sapphire 7950, Corsair TX850M, H100I, 900D, 2TB WD RED.

"Apparently, Plaintiff believes that he could sue an egg company for fraud for labeling a carton of 12 eggs a dozen, because some bakers would view a dozen as including 13 items." - Western Digital 2006
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Old July 12, 2013, 01:25 AM
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That's quite the expensive way of learning..

Drop a few VM's onto your own rig and run from there... There isn't very much more you need to learn on.
And if it turns out it's not for you, your not down $1k in cpus + the rest.

(Currently involved in building a datacentre and 3 yrs work as operations team sys admin, not the most experienced you'll meet here but I do know a few things :) )
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Last edited by Dzzope; July 12, 2013 at 07:39 AM.
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Old July 12, 2013, 04:32 AM
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if you really want to build it, i'd looking into the dual s2011 Supermicro boards, they tend to be top notch when it comes to server stuff. Tyan was another popular one back in the day but i haven't seen that name around in ages so without a quick Google search I've no idea where they are these days

nothing really special about server stuff though, other than having IPMI interfaces to manage stuff when the OS is offline, but i guess this is one of those disappointments everyone should experience for themselves
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Old July 12, 2013, 07:55 AM
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If your dead set on doing it right then you shouldn't be looking at any home user hardware.. Grab a 1 or 2 U pizza-box and do it right.

Basically the difference between server stuff and home is server stuff is built to a higher spec in longevity / errors / failover (hot swap hdd's, dual psu's etc etc)
Unless there is a specific instruction set you need from those e5's, your wasting your money. a single E3 1240 will beat it in performance / price / power BUT it will be single chip and max of 32 GB ram.
Biggest benefit of the E5 is a slight difference in instruction set, Quad channel ram and ability to use an insane amount of it.

I still say load up some VM's on your gaming rig and learn there. most dev's a SA's I know (we have over 1200 in this office) use systems that are a fraction of the speed for test builds as sa's and to dev on... then obviously test on server stuff.

If you haven't gotten it yet.. I think your insane to spend this kind of money on a rig that your gaming machine can do perfectly well

P.S you'll want more ram for those E5's if you go that route. You'll run out of RAM much faster than CPU power with VM's, even with page sharing.
Even so, what are you going to do on it that will require such expensive tin? What load is going to be on it.
To give you an idea.. we are looking at the same cpu's. To max them out we would need around 80 VM's running (depending on their load but average usage)
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Old July 12, 2013, 08:17 AM
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Have to agree with the others, there's barely a difference other than security features compare to the consumer-level hardware. Just create a Virtual Machine (with VMware Player or something.) Download a linux server or buy a Windows Server... UNLESS you're a student...

If the case is that you're a student (college or university student), you can download Windows Server for free at Microsoft Dreamspark program... www.dreamspark.com
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Old July 12, 2013, 10:19 AM
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I agree with others. A single machine with dual E5's and 32 GB of RAM will run out of ram before it runs out of CPU power if you're only running VM's. Also, it limits what you can setup for learning. If you want to learn the features of Server 2012, you're better off with multiple smaller machine than a single large one. With multiple machines, you can have one machine setup as storage server (for SMB, iSCSI, etc) and other machines setup as hosts for VM's running in a cluster (Shared Nothing Live Migration, Clustering, etc). The storage server doesn't need much cpu power and RAM rather than lots of disk IO's and good network connectivity (go for multiple GigE). Your VM hosts will need a decent CPU but more RAM and store your VM files on the storage server.

As for server hardware to run this setup, I'd say look at the Xeon E3 platform (The Xeon E3's V3 are Haswell CPU's) for the VM hosts. Yes, you are limited to 32 GB per server but for learning purposes, I think this is sufficient unless you have specific needs. For the storage server, get a cheap CPU, solid board (ideally one with 4 GigE ports and lots of SATA/SAS ports or a dedicated RAID controller). Connect all this to a solid GigE switch and you're good to go.

Be aware that rackmount chassis tend to be noisy.

As for software, you still have time to signup for TechNet if you're not a student. That will get you access to all the Microsoft software you need (but no developer tools)
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Last edited by doup93; July 12, 2013 at 10:29 AM.
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Old July 12, 2013, 03:34 PM
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Agree with the above apart from the light cpu on storage.. this will depend on the tech you want to use and how many drives. The set-up we're going for means we actually need dual e5's for a 14 disk storage node. (well nearly.. but we are going for standardized hardware throughout)

A storage node and a compute node would be what I would go for if you want it to be safe(ish) for your data and allow you to play around more.

But still I say mess about with VM's on your gaming rig till you actually need more.. learn what you can before dropping all that coin.
Big thing in servers is you don't throw tin at stuff.. you tune it and make it run better instead.. Makes it easier to stress/see when you need tuning if you don't have a beast of a server.
It's also about risk management and your looking to throw allot of money at something that doesn't need it.
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Old July 20, 2013, 06:18 AM
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I'm a student. So how can i get this software free? I'm in Highschool.
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My Rigs:
Macbook Pro: Core i5 2.5Ghz turbo to 3.1Ghz, 16GB 1600Mhz OWC Memory, 120GB SAMSUNG 840 EVO.

ASUS P8Z77-V, 8GB Corsair Vengeance Black CL9 @1600Mhz, 3570K Stock, Sapphire 7950, Corsair TX850M, H100I, 900D, 2TB WD RED.

"Apparently, Plaintiff believes that he could sue an egg company for fraud for labeling a carton of 12 eggs a dozen, because some bakers would view a dozen as including 13 items." - Western Digital 2006
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Old July 20, 2013, 09:33 AM
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which software are you referring to?
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Old July 20, 2013, 09:46 AM
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Server 2012. Other Server OS's that would normally cost a fortune.
__________________
My Rigs:
Macbook Pro: Core i5 2.5Ghz turbo to 3.1Ghz, 16GB 1600Mhz OWC Memory, 120GB SAMSUNG 840 EVO.

ASUS P8Z77-V, 8GB Corsair Vengeance Black CL9 @1600Mhz, 3570K Stock, Sapphire 7950, Corsair TX850M, H100I, 900D, 2TB WD RED.

"Apparently, Plaintiff believes that he could sue an egg company for fraud for labeling a carton of 12 eggs a dozen, because some bakers would view a dozen as including 13 items." - Western Digital 2006
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