HTPC and Server on same box

Silent Assasin

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Aug 1, 2004
Messages
1,120
Ok, so I've currently got a a descent box sitting in my basement, my old gaming machine, that is currently running an ftp server, teamspeak server, and occasional gaming server for whenever my friends and I wanna get on and screw around. But anyway has anyone made an HTPC with that much bandwidth use? Will either of these uses bog down the machine so much that either use or both will slow down massively or even crap out on me? I'm currently looking to build a new HTPC, but I was thinking that if this was possible, could I just run it on my current machine???

Curent setup up is half a gig of ram, Athlon XP2800+, and I ripped out my audigy 2 so is only onboard audio for now. So if I purchase myself a descent video capture card and probably a new sound card, can I pull this off???

Or if both uses will crap out on me, I guess I may be able to turn this current box into the HTPC with mentioned upgrades and purchase some cheap parts for server box..... What would you guys say would be best. I'd rather keep my budget around $300-400 if possible, the cheaper the better....
 

bbboza

n00b
Joined
Jan 11, 2005
Messages
41
You would be better off building a cheap machine consisting of a XP or sempron 2000-2200+, 512 ram and a decent mobo like an Nforce2 or so. add a cheap 80GB HDD and you'll be set...no need for a monitor or anything as you can use remote desktop to control it.

You can run any games server or so on it and it won't bug down your main machine at all....

Hope this helps a bit

Cheers

BBBOZA
 

tremor

[H]Lite
Joined
Jan 24, 2003
Messages
84
I'd say you'd be just fine. If you're using the box for just those servers, you're not taxing it in the slightest. You've got PLENTY of horsepower to do both.

Suggestions include picking up a hardware encoding TV tuner such as the Hauppauge MCE 150, 250, or 500. The 500 is a dual tuner 150 basically. The Hauppauge cards are very well supported in almost all PVR software, both Windows and Linux (Linux is coming into its own with the 150, not sure on the 500, but the 250 is rock solid). These cards will alleviate the load of recording down to about 3% cpu load or so. Playback will take a little more cpu, but there should be plenty of cycles to go around for what you're running.

I'd also suggest throwing in another 512M of memory, just to be on the safe side. Besides, it's nice and cheap.
 

Rhentno

2[H]4U
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
Messages
2,338
Hi. I have that setup that you mention. I have an xp2600, 9800xt, 1 gig ram, 80g hd in my server htpc box in the garage. When I work out there on projects, I watch television on the theatre 550 tv card while the server runs UT2004. I also record television programs on it and don't feel a hitch in online play. The XT is nice when I "borrow" the DLP from work and play Vice City on the wall of my garage, heh! And the Simpsons look great as well. You should be fine! It's my old gaming rig as well.
 

FrothyByte

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jun 24, 2001
Messages
1,672
tremor said:
I'd say you'd be just fine. If you're using the box for just those servers, you're not taxing it in the slightest. You've got PLENTY of horsepower to do both.

Suggestions include picking up a hardware encoding TV tuner such as the Hauppauge MCE 150, 250, or 500. The 500 is a dual tuner 150 basically. The Hauppauge cards are very well supported in almost all PVR software, both Windows and Linux (Linux is coming into its own with the 150, not sure on the 500, but the 250 is rock solid). These cards will alleviate the load of recording down to about 3% cpu load or so. Playback will take a little more cpu, but there should be plenty of cycles to go around for what you're running.

I'd also suggest throwing in another 512M of memory, just to be on the safe side. Besides, it's nice and cheap.
I agree. You should be just fine as long as you get a hardware encoder. The only time you may see slight slow downs is when you may be recording something and loading maps for the server or someone using the FTP server to upload or download something all at the same time. Reason being is due to the disk activity involved and possibly the bandwith being spread out over the different tasks. One way to aleviate that is to put things on different physical disks for each thing going on.

Even when all of that is going on, you still may not even notice it.

Remember the key thing is to get as much of the specific hardware devices doing the work so your CPU has time to direct traffic.
 

IDversusEGO

[H]ardness Supreme
Joined
Oct 30, 2003
Messages
5,015
are you looking at making an HTPC media server or will this be attached to your TV? Is it going to be used fulltime or just when you want to watch a movie?

the probablity of this working is ok. the main concern I would have is stability. If you are using an HTPC every day, the last thing you want to have to do is mess with it all the time. I have a proven config for mine and I install as litle as possible to avoid any conflicts or instability. Also, bandwidth may be an issue if it is a server, but probbly not. the only time i have seen an issue with my server is streaming 2 signals and doing a large file copy. my stream got pretty choppy. of course, a gigbit switch and NIC ont he server would fix that.
 

irrision

Limp Gawd
Joined
Apr 1, 2005
Messages
342
I think you should be fine with that setup. The only thing I've really found to be problematic for performance is a lack of ram. I run a gaming/webserver/htpc/local fileserver off an 1800+ XP with 512mb and a Hauppuage (excuse the spelling) 250 card with hardware encoding. Disk bandwidth is really a non-issue for the PVR as it barely uses any assuming you have enough ram. Run over to snapstream.com and checkout their 5 Tuner "Hydra" box specs. They found they could record on 5 tuners simultaneously with a 5400rpm drive without any hiccups in the recordings. Your cpu would certainly be doing no work at all while the box is recording if you use a hardware encoding card, I think I sit around 8% on mine while it's actively recording (sometimes less than that).
 
Top