Need Input/advice on New Server Build


Dec 30, 2006
Hi All,

Looking for help/advice on a Server Upgrade...

It looks like my server (in sig) is on it's last legs. Sometimes it boots, sometimes not so much. Anyways, as it's been a while since I've built a server I'm a bit out of the loop and would appreciate any advice/input the community can provide....

I'm currently running Windows Server Essentials 2016 to primarily handle my backup/restores/file shares and Stablebit Drivepool for storage pooling etc... However, with this new build I'm considering rebuilding everything from scratch, which will include a new OS and will consist of a number of VMs and perhaps something like FreeNas, Proxmox, Plex, misc. docker containers, home automation and whatever else gets me curious.

What I'm keeping:
Server Chasis : Norco 4220

What I'm replacing :
Pretty much everything else....I'm very open to a complete replacement of hardware with the exception of the Norco Case. For my purposes, it's been rock solid and just works. Although I'm currently utilizing Intel specific hardware, I'm open to exploring AMD solutions as well. I would REALLY like to keep the IPMI functionality of the SuperMicro boards, but I understand that I 'may' need to sacrifice that to get a really robust CPU/Board combo.

If I could get a starting point recommendation for the CPU(s), Motherboard, memory and Graphics Card that would be a big help....

My overall budget is 500-1500 (unless there is a solid reason to have a bigger budget).

Any help/thoughts are very much appreciated. Thanks in advance.

Current Setup:
Case:Norco 4220, PSU:Corsair 650HX(CMPSU), MB:Super Micro X8SIL-F, CPU:Intel Core i3-530, RAM:Kingston KVR1333D3E9SK2/4G, CNTL Cards: LSI00301 SAS 9207-8i (2), Fans:Scythe 120mm, OS: WSE 2016, HD's:Hitachi/Seagate/WD 7200RPM drives, SysDrive: WD Blue 3D 500GB, Graphics Card: NONE (built into CPU only)


Jan 2, 2012
Are you looking for a "server" grade MB because you need the potential better stability, or is there any other reason why you have Supermicro right now?
As for VM stuff, you may need to decide which hypervisor you'll be going with. Some, like whatever WMware offers, work better with specific hardware, so that may dictate your CPU choice.
You could probably get away with keeping the PSU and LSI cards, storage HDDs. For system, go with NVMe drive - that's pretty much the standard these days.

I personally was in a similar situation about a year ago, replacing Intel i3 6300T based system w/ PERC H700. I ended up with Ryzen 5 3400G/32G RAM/NVMe SSD for system. I have base OS as Win10, and it is running HyperV with several VMs: FreeNAS, Win10 dev box, centOS dev box. FreeNAS has direct access to 2x4TB WD Reds. While I initially considered a boot level hypervisor, that would have required me to install an external GPU for my HTPC purposes. I didn't want the increase 10w+ power draw of that, so I went with Win10 to be able to play light games (WinServer does not support DirectX as I leaned...). Win10 does not support simultaneous RDP sessions, and that's about the main differences b/w the consumer and server OS'es. (I know there's more, used to run Server 2010/2016 before, but for my purposes that's it). You can install most features of server on win10 via features and whatnot.

No issues at all, other than windows updating at will. I know I can disable all that, but it's not causing me any issues to bother me enough to do anything about it, lol. I have the FreeNAS VM on auto-boot based on last state, and it comes back every time without me ever noticing.

With that Ryzen chip and B450 MB, my upgrade path is wide open.

Without more detailed requirements, it would be difficult to recommend anything to you. Unless you're just looking for a general discussion, in which case here you go. :)