Ok, building a server for multitude of things. Lots of storage, neato stuff.
Here's a question. Should i run 1 or 2 processors. This isn't going to mission critical or anything like that. SO i'm curious if it's worth going with 2 processors or just stick with 1? What sayeth the hive?
It depends on a lot of what you're doing and if you have the money to burn.
A file server is a very easy thing for a computer to do. You could do it on a single Pentium II. If you're purely doing storage, you could run it as a Network Attached Storage device from a used 486. That's a focused task though, and I'm guessing you'll be doing more. But it just gives you an idea how easy it is for the computer to serve files.
An SQL server, then we're getting somewhere. Still, running a SQL server from a single 1 GHz cpu will be fine with just a few users. If you get up to a dozen or more simultaneous users, then you'll start getting delays. Also load it up with a ton of memory.
Web server...same story as with the SQL server.
Ammo server....well, one doesn't exist yet, but I sure wish it did!
Share-point Services on Win2003 or another server product that has "automated" GUI features is the type of software where you may want a 2 GHz + machine. But again, it won't take advantage of a 2nd CPU.
Multi-CPU systems are a big advantage when (they're always a slight advantage):
* The software is multi-threaded
* You run multiple single-threaded titles simultaneously and the OS is good at dividing up the work between the CPU's
Very little single-user software is multi-threaded. I keep hoping, but it just isn't available yet. Likewise, current OSs aren't exactly breathtaking on dividing single-threaded applications on a multi-CPU system. WinXP does ok at it, but not great. I hear BeOS is really good at it. Still...even with WinXP Pro, if you're running multiple heavy-applications at once, a single CPU machine will definitely bog down before a multi-CPU machine. If you're running SQL Server, SharePoint, a Battlefield 2 server, and burning a DVD...a single CPU system will be crying for it's mama while a dual-CPU (say with each CPU with dual cores), you'll be sailing right along still. If you're running one or two applications at a time, there won't be much difference.
Oh, there's one more advantage too that I noticed when I had my dual CPU setup...bragging rights. Maybe add RAID....and a sticker on the side that says "Type R" and people think it runs faster than it actually does.
As always Robbie, your opinion is one i listen to in this section of our cyber haven. Let me list the system specs for ya. It's going to serve a alot of functions around the house, so i may stick with the dualy.
CPU's: Intel Xeon EM64T 2.8ghz Nocona Core (2)
MB: Tyan S5360G2NR
RAID Cage: I-Star BPU-230SATA
RAID Drives: Western Digital Caviar RE WD2500SD (4 - total of 1tb in a Raid 10 configuration)
RAID Ctrlr: Promise SATAII 150 SX8
Memory: pqi Power Series DDR-333 (2gb - 1gb per slot)
OS Drive: Western Digital Raptor 36.7gb
OS: Windows Server 2003
Power Supply: Seasonic 600w
Case: Undecided - maybe this: http://www.overclockercafe.com/Reviews/cases/Lian_Li_PC-V1100/ Left COLD intentially.
As you can see the list of parts is pretty hefty in the wallet. It'll be built over a period of time in stages. Any recomendations? Thanks again Robbie.
hehe...looks like you're building a Maximum PC "dream machine." It looks like it'll be able to do whatever you want. If you haven't already, you may want to checkout SharePoint to run locally on your 2003. Even if you're hard-coding-old-school, SharePoint will add to the WAF as she could create whatever databases she wanted on the fly as well as an intranet site with ease. Then again, with the money you're spending on this box, maybe you don't have a wifez0r in the house. Haha!
That's a sweet case! I like the division of the drives at the bottom and it looks like they've got great airflow. The roller-skate feet are cute, but I dunno if I'd be towing it along behind a bicycle or anything.
Unless they changed the model numbers on me, those are 250GB drives. In RAID 10 (striped-mirrored), that would give you 500GB of storage. Two drives in RAID 0 (striped) which would be very fast...faster than your already-fast Raptor, but then the other two drives in RAID 1 (mirrored) would simply mirror the other two drives and the 3rd/4th drive would not go toward adding capacity, they just do their job as silent backup**. Windows would simply see the 4-drive array as a single 500GB drive letter.
If you went RAID 0 for the four drives, then you have 1TB (again, a very fast TB), but then you've got no fault-tolerance (if you wanted it). If you spent money on a 5th drive you could go with some RAID 5 and still have 1TB (if I'm calculating correctly. The extra 250GB used for parity info). You could also go with Hitachi 500GB's, but that's a lot more money/GB.
The Seasonic is very nice and the Promise controller cards do most anything you want. The CPU/mobo combo looks to be very fast. I'd look to purchase the CPU/mobo/memory last, since their prices drop the fastest. The HDD's would be 2nd to last. Probably go with the case first followed by the controller card, optical drives, PSU next since their prices don't change all that much.
* WAF - Wife Acceptability Factor
** Silent Backup - almost sounds like a movie title for a Steven Seagall movie...or an episode of Walker, Texas Ranger.
WAF = -1
She saw the excel spreedsheet the other night and almost freaked. I had to tell her i'd be purchasing it in stages to break up the cost of the system.
I was actually contemplating running it in RAID 5 as well, may add a few more drives and another cage to accompany them. I was also considering using an SCSI drive for the OS instead of a Raptor, thats another choice. Also been contemplating some type of backup device for the system seeing as it will being storing my wife's PhD course work as well.
As you said the spec sheet reads like a Maximum PC dream machine. THere's few things i take seriously and my computers are one of them. This will take some time to acquire the parts... but it will be a fun build in time. I'm already getting jittery.
edited for spelling
Wana see my file/web/sql/game server specs?
P4 1.6 (willamette )
40 gig of IDE storage space
now that is one kickin file/web/sql/game server eh?
processor : 0
vendor_id : GenuineIntel
cpu family : 6
model : 5
model name : Pentium II (Deschutes)
stepping : 2
cpu MHz : 398.273
cache size : 512 KB
bogomips : 794.62
I'm running an old 866 as my server at home. Plenty of horsepower to work as a domain controller, print server, and file server.