Good server board+ CPU + 8GB RAM > $500

Discussion in 'Virtualized Computing' started by AMD_Gamer, Jan 10, 2011.

  1. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
    I have a case, drives, Perc 6. What would be a good server motherboard + CPU and RAM for under $500? this would have to work with a Perc 6 and ESXi. I kinda want to replace my Asus board with 4GB DDR2 and Phenom X4. I want a real server board, something more robust and maybe 8GB ram.
     
  2. lizardking009

    lizardking009 Gawd

    Messages:
    663
    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
  3. Treyshadow

    Treyshadow [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,392
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2003
  4. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
  5. NetJunkie

    NetJunkie [H]ardForum Junkie

    Messages:
    9,683
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2001
    Yeah, the X8SIL-F rocks.

    IPMI is a separate management system on the board. You can remote in and get a KVM to the server..hardware level. Also has sensors for monitoring the health of the system. The NICs can team if your OS tells them to..it's not up to the hardware. I have X3450s on mine w/ 8GB of Kingston Value ECC RAM (2x4GB).
     
  6. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
  7. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
  8. Child of Wonder

    Child of Wonder 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    3,269
    Joined:
    May 22, 2006
    Why only 8GB of RAM? RAM is so cheap go with 16GB.
     
  9. Netwerkz101

    Netwerkz101 Gawd

    Messages:
    663
    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    If you do go with 8GB - get 2x4GB so you'll have two slots free
    when you do decide to upgrade to 16GB.

    Because some [H] member (who upgraded from 4 2x2's to 4 2x4's) would probably
    sell him 8G ((2x2GB)x2) for half the cost of new??? :D
     
  10. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
    Thanks for the info everyone, looks like I am getting this board to upgrade my server. Only concern now is if the Perc6 would work ok with?

    my new ESXi/Experimentation server should have these specs

    SUPERMICRO X8SILFO http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813182211
    2X Kingston 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM ECC Unbuffered DDR3 1333 Server Memory http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820139040
    Intel Xeon X3440 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819117225
    CORSAIR HX Series CMPSU-620HX 620W http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139002
    Dell Perc 6 RAID CONTROLLER
    Raptor 74GB(primary os)
    4X Western Digital RE3 WD5002ABYS 500GB http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136294
    Antec 300 Case( will upgrade to norco 4020 with future funds)
    Genereic DVDROM drive

    I already have everything except the mobo,ram, and cpu. My current ESXi server is using a ASUS M3A78 Pro AM2+/AM2 AMD 780G, AMD Phenom 9950 Agena 2.6GHz Socket AM2+ , CORSAIR XMS2 4GB (2 x 2GB). Those parts just happened to work fine with ESXi and my Perc 6 but I want to upgrade to a more official server parts, something more robust and more RAM, not just something that happened to work as a cheap ESX whitebox.
     
  11. dashpuppy

    dashpuppy [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    6,163
    Joined:
    May 5, 2010
    add more ram while you can :)
     
  12. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
    I am trying to make this cheap and there is a HUGE difference in price between the 4GB stock and the 2GB sticks.
     
  13. Child of Wonder

    Child of Wonder 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    3,269
    Joined:
    May 22, 2006
    Drop the CPU down to a X3430 to free up $30. Then somehow scrape together another $137 and get 16GB of this RAM:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148380

    You're not going to be CPU limited so I would invest the most in RAM and disk.

    You can save $20 getting the motherboard from Buy.com.

    http://www.buy.com/prod/supermicro-...set-micro-atx-socket/q/loc/101/212415126.html

    Now you need another $108 for the 16GB of RAM. :)

    There's also no need to use a Raptor for the ESXi install. You can use a $10 USB flash drive and then sell the Raptor!

    Get this PSU instead: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005
    The CMPSU-620HX is out of stock but this should also save some $$$.

    Get creative and get 16GB of RAM. With 8GB you're going to run out of memory for your VMs very quickly.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2011
  14. NetJunkie

    NetJunkie [H]ardForum Junkie

    Messages:
    9,683
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2001
    Depends what he's doing. Both my lab boxes are running with 8GB. I originally planned to go 16GB but so far haven't seen the need. Most of the time one of my boxes is shut down via DPM so it all runs in 8GB just fine. You can add RAM later..not so easy to get that $30 worth of CPU back. :)
     
  15. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
    thanks for the info, but I already have the 620hx, I am just upgrading the mobo,cpu and ram.

    I need a HDD for OS drive because I will be playing around with server 2008 also.

    I have a bunch of stuff I am going to sell so if I have enough I will look into the 16GB choice.
     
  16. dashpuppy

    dashpuppy [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    6,163
    Joined:
    May 5, 2010
    AMD, i personally would buy as much ram as you possibly can, put it in now. I did the same as you had all the stuff and now im running out of ram at 4 gigs, good thing im building a new server however still trying to plan for more than 8 gigs.

    j'
     
  17. Thuleman

    Thuleman [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    5,834
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2004
    Those who say 8GB isn't enough, what exactly are you running in a home lab environment that exceeds 8 GB, especially "very quickly". I understand that it is all relative, one user can run 20 VMs on 8 GB (low ram all same version of lolnix) and another will be out of RAM just running a couple VMs, but still, needing more than 8 GB in a test environment doesn't seem that likely.
     
  18. Child of Wonder

    Child of Wonder 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    3,269
    Joined:
    May 22, 2006
    My home lab consists of two ESXi servers, each with 16GB of RAM.

    Here are my VMs:

    vCenter VM
    2 Windows 2008 R2 Domain controllers
    1 Windows 2008 R2 server running Veeam Backup and Recovery
    1 Debian VM running Milkyway@Home
    3 Lefthand Virtual SAN appliances because I'm studying for the Lefthand cert
    vSphere Management Assistant
    1 Windows 7 VM running Playon streaming media server
    2 Windows 2008 R2 VMs I plan on using to test Sharepoint and Exchange with

    This is the whole point of a home lab: to load up VMs to experiment with. If all you do is load up a single ESXi host, load up a few meaningless VMs then what's the point? You're not really learning anything about VMware since setting up the OS is merely the baby steps of virtualization and you don't have the memory to do more than load a handful of VMs without worrying about contention (ESXi is going to gobble up about 1GB all by itself).
     
  19. Netwerkz101

    Netwerkz101 Gawd

    Messages:
    663
    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    @ AMD_Gamer

    Dell Small Business
    Dell Poerwedge T-110 for $379 + Tax (Free 3-5 day shipping right now)

    PowerEdge T110 Chassis with upto 4 Cabled Hard Drives
    2GB Memory (1x2GB), 1333MHz Single Ranked UDIMM
    Intel® Xeon® X3430, 2.4 GHz, 8M Cache, Turbo
    On-Board Single Gigabit Network Adapter
    250GB 7.2K RPM SATA 3.5" Cabled Hard Drive

    Sell off the memory it comes with (2x1GB) and possibly the hard drive if not needed.

    Just add:

    $30 Intel GB Nic - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16833106033


    My offer for the memory ((2x2GB)x2) stands ...
    as does my recommendation you go with 2x4GB


    ~ $500 and you can do want you want with your old equipment (sell it!!!)

    I do like that Supermicro Board though... extremely nice.
     
  20. dashpuppy

    dashpuppy [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    6,163
    Joined:
    May 5, 2010
    8's ok, but more the better, i have 4 and it's all used up, every time you build a vm and dedicate 512 or 1gig etc etc, and run it, that ram is now dedicated to that vm say you have 3 4 vms and want to do more for testing with out turing off others you will need more ram this is where i am having problem.

    I want 8-16. I also run 2008r2 server as the host.
     
  21. Thuleman

    Thuleman [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    5,834
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2004
    Given the VMs you run, how much host memory is being used? I'd be surprised if your 12 VMs wouldn't fit into 8GB (or 7GB) given how memory is shared.

    Contention isn't an issue in a home lab, so what if something takes 3 seconds instead of 2, not like you'll notice it anyway.

    If he buys 8GB of RAM today he will be able to save 50% on the 8GB when he buys them tomorrow (exaggerated for dramatic effect, maybe not if he buys used RAM tomorrow from people who must have it all and have it now). He has a budget, why go over just because it may come in handy one day if there's no pressing need to do so.
     
  22. Child of Wonder

    Child of Wonder 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    3,269
    Joined:
    May 22, 2006
    Putting one of my hosts into maintenance mode so everything is running on a single host shows 12GB of RAM being used. With 8GB, there would be some serious swapping going on. Contention is an issue since my wife would kill me if she was watching Hulu on our LCD TV and it stuttered. :)

    RAM prices are at a near historic low right now and can increase just as quickly as they decrease. "Tomorrow" RAM could be twice as much.

    Can the OP run 8GB and get by? Sure. Can he load up many VMs so he can have a robust home lab running AD, vCenter, VMA, Exchange, Sharepoint, Linux, maybe a virtual SAN or two, plus have those VMs backed up? No.
     
  23. NetJunkie

    NetJunkie [H]ardForum Junkie

    Messages:
    9,683
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2001
    Yes..and tomorrow memory may be half its current price. Spikes are far rarer than the continual decline...

    As for VMs, it's up to the user. I don't need NAS VMs...streaming VMs...or several things. It's a pure learning lab. That's why requirements vary.
     
  24. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
    How do you install an OS remotely with IPMI? you can mount an ISO from a network share?
     
  25. NetJunkie

    NetJunkie [H]ardForum Junkie

    Messages:
    9,683
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2001
    You web in and do "virtual media". So you can mount an ISO on your system to the server and boot off that.
     
  26. RiDDLeRThC

    RiDDLeRThC 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    3,885
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2002
    I went with the Dell T-110 a few months back and couldn't be happier. I originally put 10gb of ram in it with plans to go to 16gb but haven't had the need yet. I could of used the extra ram when doing a two site Exchange HA setup for testing but Exchange/dc's handled running on 1gb of ram for the short time I needed it to.

    I plan on at some point upgrading to 16gb of ram and adding an additional T-110 to the mix with shared storage.
     
  27. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
    so you select the ISO on your remote computer from the IPMI client you use?
     
  28. NetJunkie

    NetJunkie [H]ardForum Junkie

    Messages:
    9,683
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2001
    No. You web in to the IPMI interface on the server. Open up the virtual KVM console. Then mount an ISO sitting on your system as a virtual CD-ROM on the server.
     
  29. Vader

    Vader [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    4,823
    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2002
    In my lab i'm running VCenter, and 2 Uber Celerra VSA's for replication. After the memory allocation for that, really that doesn't leave much to play with that's why I went 16GB.

    I certainly agree with Child of Wonder, a lab should be able to accomodate whatever it is you want to learn. I'm studying for my VCP right now, and will be studying for EMC cert as well. Having said that I could get away with one box and 8GB's, but i'm not just going to learn for the VCP, and EMC cert, but want to take it further with SRM and you have to have the necessary hardware to to do that, ie multiple VCenter, SRM servers, Two VSA's..etc.
     
  30. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
  31. Netwerkz101

    Netwerkz101 Gawd

    Messages:
    663
    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
  32. NetJunkie

    NetJunkie [H]ardForum Junkie

    Messages:
    9,683
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2001
  33. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
    Sorry but I have never done this, the virtual CD-ROM mounting is a feature of IPMI or you use IPMI to select that feature in the boards BIOS?
     
  34. NetJunkie

    NetJunkie [H]ardForum Junkie

    Messages:
    9,683
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2001
    Function of the IPMI chip on the board. It's very nice and does everything the "lights out" management options do on "real" servers. Usually the license to do this on a real server is more than the X8SIL-F itself costs. It's nice.
     
  35. zpackrat

    zpackrat Gawd

    Messages:
    708
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2002
    this is what I'm looking at to upgrade my current esxi server with

    https://secure.newegg.com/WishList/MySavedWishDetail.aspx?ID=16485306

    now this is north of 500, but includes 16GB of ram, should not require the purchase of supported nics for esxi.
    Keep in mind that if your running windows 2008>, vista> or linux you will be limited to memory compression/swap more so if you are running windows 2003< or xp< since page pool sharing has a much bigger impact on memory utilization due to the fact that the newer os's use larger memory pages. I have a core2duo 6420, 8GB ram and an Asus P5M2 and after upgrading my lab servers to Windows 2008 I now have 3 servers running comfortably, DC, Exch2010 and Xenapp 5. where as previously I had 6-7 Windows 2003 servers running comfortably.
     
  36. NetJunkie

    NetJunkie [H]ardForum Junkie

    Messages:
    9,683
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2001
    vSphere will still properly share memory when using larger pages. As you hit contention it will fragment them and further consolidate. It just doesn't do it unless it needs to do it...so the memory stats can be a bit misleading.
     
  37. zpackrat

    zpackrat Gawd

    Messages:
    708
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2002
    Can you point me to info related to fragmenting the memory pages, I have been discussing this with one of my fellow VCP's at work and this has been bugging me for some time.
     
  38. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
    link no work

    the nics on the board I am getting should work fine correct? other people here are using the same board.
     
  39. zpackrat

    zpackrat Gawd

    Messages:
    708
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2002
    Yes they look to be the same.

    You would be better served by adding more memory and choosing a slightly slower CPU, 2x2GB will severely limit the number of VM's you can run, and if you can't swing the price for the listed components, I would start with 2x4GB ram and then add a matched set when budget dictates.

    Looks to be the same chipset, here are the links for my future upgrade.

    I like the below MB because it has the onboard USB port to internalize a usb memory stick for esxi, mine currently hangs off the back of my server. Also my current Asus P5M2 has been rock solid for over 3 years now, so I'm a fan of Asus server boards.

    ASUS P7F-M

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131611

    Intel Xeon X3430
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819117226

    G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231312
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2011
  40. AMD_Gamer

    AMD_Gamer [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    18,277
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
    Your list is pretty much the same as mine, I can upgrade to 16GB when I get more money and it will be ECC.

    That ASUS board looks like the same design as the X8SILFO.