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  1. #46
    Super MURCer UtwigMU's Avatar
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    It's OEM DSP 326€+VAT with free shipping in Slovenia. I think Open Licence is overkill for single physical server no virtual servers scenario.

  2. #47
    Crabby Smurf Umfriend's Avatar
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    You may be right but given that I'l install on a testbed first before I go to my server and the bad luck I've had with shady MS licenses I'd rather not take any chances.
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  3. #48
    Moderator VJ's Avatar
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    Thanks for the offer, but I will first try with Linux and then if necessary switch to a regular Windows... For a simple home situation, that ought to be enough.

    I was planning to buy the computer after my return to Poland, but am now thinking of getting it earlier. Being alone here in Spain does not give me much to do in the weekends, so having a system to play with could be fun. I've tried with Docker on Ubuntu Server 17.10 but have issues as it is 32 bit and all docker images are 64 bit. There is a repository called i386, but it contains much less images (not the ones I need) and downloads seem to disconnect often. So now I'm playing with the idea of just buying the system. I know that if I would hold out a year, I could get a better system (or similar system at lower price), but it all should not matter that much. Also, it would be nice if it was all set to go by the time I go back.
    pixar
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  4. #49
    Moderator VJ's Avatar
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    I was thinking of some Apollo Lake mainboard/cpu: low power Intel SOC, but with Gemini Lake set to be revealed in Q4 2017, there seems to be more sense in waiting. I checked Denverton, but they are expensive: nearly 3 times the price of an Apollo Lake mainboard.

    So the idea would be to now get a mainboard+soc, memory, ssd disk for os and a case. No storage harddisks yet - or maybe one if needed for testing functionality. I could use my TV as a monitor. Edit: and I'd need a keyboard.

    This would give me ample time to test stuff and at the same time it would give me something to do in the weekends. And then when I go back home, it is just a matter of plugging it in, and start filling it with data.
    Last edited by VJ; 6th November 2017 at 08:15.
    pixar
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  5. #50
    Moderator VJ's Avatar
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    I started looking around... Asrock has quite cheap low power soc-mainboards:
    https://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/J4205-ITX/index.us.asp
    Only 4 SATA ports though, but of course one could add pcie sata controller. The server mainboards are of course more interesting:
    http://asrockrack.com/general/produc...Specifications
    but about 3-5 times more expensive.

    I guess it will depend how many disks I want to support. I expect Gemini Lake based mainboards to be launched at CES, so for sure I will wait till then (either it will lower the price of the current ones, or new interesting ones will appear).

    As for the case, I'm still wondering... either some small form factor (e.g. the Fractal Design Node 304, 6 hdd spaces) is an option, some smaller form factor case or some cheap 2U rack mount (e.g. Inter-tech 20240, 8 hdd spaces). I will have to measure at home which form of case fits me best (I have a rackmount switch and a rackmount patch panel, but I also have to put the modem of the internet connection somewhere). There seems little point in getting a case with many hdd spaces if the mainboard does not support them, but there also is no point in getting a mainboard with many sata ports if the case cannot hold disks. There seems to be a tendency towards 2.5" hdd storage systems (Silverstone has small form factor cases that can hold up to 8 2.5"hdds), but pricewise it does not make sense.

    Then again, I should not consider this a computer, but rather a storage system. So if I were go with the cheapest mainboard with a cheap small case, I could actually build 2 such systems for the price of the server mainboard in a small case. So maybe I should not be looking at expansion possibilities of the mainboard (in the sense of additional SATA ports), and just go with a 4 hdd capable system (mainboard+case) now, and add an additional system if the need were to come for supporting more than 4 physical disks (I would start with 2 in raid 0).
    Last edited by VJ; 8th November 2017 at 06:20.
    pixar
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  6. #51
    Super MURCer UtwigMU's Avatar
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    Go rackmount only if server will be in another room where no one goes as rackmounts are loud. You can get vertical wall mount rack adapters and screw the server sideways on a wall in toilet or store room.

    For storage go ECC.
    Last edited by UtwigMU; 8th November 2017 at 08:57.

  7. #52
    Moderator VJ's Avatar
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    I'm guessing that any case (even a rackmount) with components that are not generating too much heat can be made silent (the cpu I'm looking at is 10W TDP, 4 harddisks should not make it very cramped, so plenty of space for airflow). 2U allows for 80cm fans and standard ATX psu, which all exist in quiet forms. But it would not be in a living room or bedroom.

    But I think my best approach to start this built is not to care about expanding (as I said regarding the sata ports / hdd spaces) and just optimize this built as a standalone device rather than as a computer. I'm still looking at some cases (the Node 304 is nice, but slightly too big).
    Basically, it would be nice if I could find something that would fit in the footprint of where I now have my switch and patch panel (so an area 40 wide x 50 deep) together with the fiber-modem and most likely network based TV tuner. There is a height limitation (which I would have to measure, but I'm guessing not more than 20cm), so either it would have to be something low and wide (modem/tv tuner fits above it - you can see why I'm looking at the 2U formfactor) or something slightly higher and narrow (modem/tv tuner fit next to it, one on top of the other).
    pixar
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  8. #53
    Super MURCer UtwigMU's Avatar
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    Check out also Lian Li cases. I'll do the NAS project as well in next 3 months or so.

  9. #54
    Moderator VJ's Avatar
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    My girlfriend wondered if it would be possible to repurpose this device I have: Zotac Mag hd-nd01, an ION-based Atom C330. But its lack of internal connectors would mean everything would have to be external, on one e-sata or on a usb 2. And lack of expansion slots means that is it. In addition, it is a 6-7 year old low powered computer, so I doubt that is an option.

    I'm still looking at cases for a new system, and this could be an interesting rack mount option that can be made silent: https://www.inter-tech.de/en/product...cases/2u-20240

    However, I also thought of something else: my dual Xeon is in a big Lian-Li tower where there still is plenty of space. To that extent, that it actually may be possible to add a second system to it (e.g. near the power supply area or between that location and the 5.25" bays). Phanteks has an adapter to allow two mainboards to be powered by the same psu (here).
    The tower is standing there anyway and is not that often used (it runs an old windows version to allow access to my scsi scanner and a usb photo printer that has no drivers for new OS). In the case, I have 4 hotswap hdd bays (currently 3 in use) and 6x 3.5" spaces (currently 2 in use), all cooled. But I would shuffle the disks around so that the hotswap drivebays would be used for the new system.

    Getting that Phanteks adapter would mean I would not have to get a psu (less things to mount). One idea would be to replace the back panel (the one that holds the psu and have one fabricated for the purpose (io shield opening + psu opening). Another option is to put an itx tray in the 5.25" bay (but more issues with cabling). But: no issue in having to source a case, maximum use of what I have and no need for a new location.
    pixar
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  10. #55
    Super MURCer UtwigMU's Avatar
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    IMO external drives are not good idea for long term storage system. The idea with reusing existing case is good. I also have my old Win2k3 Server in Chieftec LBX waiting for NAS to be built. Then I can repurpose the LBX

  11. #56
    Crabby Smurf Umfriend's Avatar
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    External drives are fine if you go eSATA. USB not so much for long term & continuous storage.
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  12. #57
    Moderator VJ's Avatar
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    Yes, so I will just keep that low powered Atom as a client/computer for simple things. It was dead cheap and already served its purpose. If it really gets too slow for anything, it can always be used as the component that makes a TV really smart. :-)

    So... the two problems I have with the idea of adding the mini-itx to the big case are: 1. how to mount it (but I need to check the case) and 2. how to test it here... but any small case with basic psu would suffice for that...
    pixar
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  13. #58
    Super MURCer UtwigMU's Avatar
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    I think best is to mount in in bay. You could also use external powerbrick style PSU.

  14. #59
    Moderator VJ's Avatar
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    A small powerbrick would allow me to test it now, but would not be enough to power the harddisks. Powering up the dual Xeon just to have the hdds powered defeats the purpose of a low-power and quiet system.

    I'm currently thinking of removing the back panel of the big case to which the psu is attached. The top half of the back as shown here:
    http://www.dansdata.com/images/pc70/bpanel300.jpg
    It is this area, this is viewed from the inside: http://www.dansdata.com/images/pc70/psuspot320.jpg
    This gives a hole of about 17x20 cm (my estimate from the photos), more than deep enough, with a bottom bracket and sides.

    Then, I could put a small cheap case (e.g. this one) side by side with the PSU (if I put it on its side).
    The small case would mainly serve as itx tray and could be left open (for the cabling to psu and hdds), and it could face the PSU fan. I would basically need to have a panel made that has screwholes and an opening for the PSU and a rectangular hole for the small case. That should not be too difficult/expensive. Perhaps I don't even need the panel if I can attach the psu and itx case in way that they do not vibrate.
    Last edited by VJ; Yesterday at 07:03.
    pixar
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