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Cheap server build

post #1 of 102
Thread Starter 

Been poking around ebay trying to put together an inexpensive multi CPU cruncher, hopefully in time for the Pentathlon.  And I came across the following, looks like I could put something like this together for $110 - 135 in parts and some stuff I have laying around.

 

$65 motherboard new

 

http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-Dell-Poweredge-R410-Dual-Xeon-LGA1366-Server-System-Motherboard-03GTGH-N051F-/391211453798?hash=item5b16050d66:g:q30AAOSwPe1T-5xj

 

or $45 used

 

http://www.ebay.com/itm/SuperMicro-Dual-Socket-LGA1366-Motherboard-X8DTT-F-SG007-Rev-2-/361508515832?hash=item542b962ff8:g:NlMAAOSw5IJWceev
 

processors are cheap $21 for a pair of L5630 or $23 for a pair of E5630

 

would still need some RAM,

 

I've got an ATX power supply, HDD, CPU coolers and PCI wireless card on hand.  Assuming PC parts will work.

 

I would stick some flavour of Linux on it

 

I have not built a server before, hopefully you experts can tell me if I am about to throw my money away.

 

So that would be 16 threads of Xeon power...  How would this work?  Not at all, or slower than slow?

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post #2 of 102
Have a look here at the bottom of the page. If you want a server grade build, the best thing to do is maximize performance.... otherwise would be better to invest in a single CPU like the E3-1240V2 or something...

http://www.cpu-world.com/CPUs/Xeon/Intel-Xeon%20E5630%20-%20AT80614005463AA%20(BX80614E5630).html

A nice lower power 6-core/12-thread CPU is the E5645 and that is affordable I think...

OR you could look at the L5640 along those same lines.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/QTY-1x-INTEL-Six-Cores-CPU-L5640-2-26GHZ-12MB-5-86GT-s-QPI-LGA1366-SLBV8-60W-/141942428207?hash=item210c6d922f:g:xQAAAOSwAvJW-Mjb

It really makes a big difference having the extra cores... otherwise, performance for that setup would not be much more than another faster single CPU setup.

I chose to go with two X5680 CPU's and much higher cost, but it was the only way to compete with more modern single CPU setups... I'm very happy that I did that, but not everyone has the same goals as me. Also, the X5680 vintage CPU's pull a lot of power, about 385 Watts from the wall running 24 threads.

A lower power setup would not be that much slower for BOINC purposes, but would significantly lower the power required to maybe 250W or so?

In any case, look around. A 6-core vs. 4-core CPU is a really good (if not the best) way to go... I did that for a dual CPU setup to justify the expense.... special deals not withstanding of course...

BTW, the dual X5680 setup is running Linux Mint 17.3 Cinnamon no CODECs just fine... and it runs Universe tasks significantly faster under Linux than under Winderz. Nice GUI, easy to setup remote host control via desktop sharing, PSensors for for temperature display... BOINC of course...


Good Luck!

biggrin.gif


Edited by Tex1954 - 4/3/16 at 8:29am
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post #3 of 102
Thread Starter 

Thanks Tex! 

 

Big price difference between something like an E5630 at $23 a pair, versus E5645/L5640 at $100 a pair.  Turns my $120 project into a $220 project. eek.gif

 

You are just using the regular MINT distro?  Nothing special needed for the dual CPUs?

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post #4 of 102
Before you jump on that thing, have you considered 2011 server boards? You can get 8 core xeon processors for as little as 50 bucks. A lot of performance to be had there:

http://www.ebay.com/sch/Server-CPUs-Processors-/56088/i.html?_from=R40&_sop=15&_nkw=e5-2670
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post #5 of 102
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyclops View Post

Before you jump on that thing, have you considered 2011 server boards? You can get 8 core xeon processors for as little as 50 bucks. A lot of performance to be had there:

http://www.ebay.com/sch/Server-CPUs-Processors-/56088/i.html?_from=R40&_sop=15&_nkw=e5-2670

 

Yes but the dual CPU motherboards are a lot more expensive.  Although I guess with 16 threads in one processor, maybe I don't need that.  Thanks.

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post #6 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by bfromcolo View Post

Thanks Tex! 

Big price difference between something like an E5630 at $23 a pair, versus E5645/L5640 at $100 a pair.  Turns my $120 project into a $220 project. eek.gif

You are just using the regular MINT distro?  Nothing special needed for the dual CPUs?

Yup, plane vanilla distro off the LinuxMint.com website...

By all means, get what you wish, but don't forget RAM and all that. A very nice single CPU setup using a surplus Aurora R4 ALX motherboard and the E5-2670 would do very nicely. The problem I had with any server setup was Mobo cost until I found the $50 Supermicro X8DTT-F and then just put a fast CPU in it. Thing is, it uses a non-standard power input setup...

But, whatever!

We are OCN members and like the fastest setups (within budget of course) that make the wall wiring smoke!

BWaaaaaaaa HaHaHaHaHaHaHa!!!!!




biggrin.gif
Edited by Tex1954 - 4/3/16 at 9:37am
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post #7 of 102
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tex1954 View Post

The problem I had with any server setup was Mobo cost until I found the $50 Supermicro X8DTT-F and then just put a fast CPU in it. Thing is, it uses a non-standard power input setup...

Thats one of the boards I listed in the OP.  So I would not be able to use one of the ATX power supplies I have laying around?

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post #8 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by bfromcolo View Post

Thats one of the boards I listed in the OP.  So I would not be able to use one of the ATX power supplies I have laying around?

Well, you would have to mod it or make a special cable. The ATX connector is NOT standard at all, not even close...


http://www.jonnyguru.com/forums/showthread.php?t=12212

It's actually a Major pain to try to extract pins from a connector... the locking ears of the pins always get flattened & maybe break trying to bend them back out... I had to purchase new pins, crimping tool, connector bodies to do it... and wire of course...

Then I got those cheap 450w $9 server PSUs on ebay...

biggrin.gif
Edited by Tex1954 - 4/3/16 at 9:54am
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post #9 of 102
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tex1954 View Post


Well, you would have to mod it or make a special cable. The ATX connector is NOT standard at all, not even close...


http://www.jonnyguru.com/forums/showthread.php?t=12212

It's actually a Major pain to try to extract pins from a connector... the locking ears of the pins always get flattened & maybe break trying to bend them back out... I had to purchase new pins, crimping tool, connector bodies to do it... and wire of course...

Then I got those cheap 450w $9 server PSUs on ebay...

biggrin.gif


Did you need two PSUs or is the second power connector to connect to a second board?

 

Edit - never mind I found a manual, guess you only use one at a time.

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post #10 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by bfromcolo View Post


Did you need two PSUs or is the second power connector to connect to a second board?

The boards are meant to be placed side by side in a rack mount chassis... ONLY ONE connector can be used at a time. There are two so Supermicro can have a simple power distribution scheme with side-by-side mounting.




It's basically half grounds and half 12v wires...




Here is another mod URL.... https://rochegregory.wordpress.com/2015/03/14/supermicro-x8dtt-hef-mod-a-power-supply/


biggrin.gif
Edited by Tex1954 - 4/3/16 at 10:27am
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Blue Beast
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