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The VM Server all-in-one thread [work in progress - updated 3-17-11] - Page 3

post #21 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
That list from Xen is terribly outdated. It was last edited in July 2008 and an eternity has passed (CPU lifetime-wise) between then and now. All new AMD and Intel processors (2010 and newer) barring Atom should have VT-x support. As long as you steer clear of the Atom and single-core Celeron Conroe-L, all the desktop processors Newegg is currently selling should have VT-x support. Needless to say, such features are pretty much standard on server processors.
You're absolutely correct about the date on that Xen document. I should have looked.

When I was shopping for my budget VM server box I was trying to find both cheap and capable Intel CPUs (exploring my options).

This $70 Pentium 5500, for instance, does not include support (while this ~$50 Celeron does). Meanwhile this sub-$40 single-core Sempron actually has the extension (I actually went with this triple-core).

I'm actually CPU brand agnostic, I was trying maximize the money-to-features ratio. And at least from my vantage point there seems to be a lot more options in the VM extension field on the AMD side.
 
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post #22 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by subassy View Post
This $70 Pentium 5500, for instance, does not include support
says who?
post #23 of 33
Thread Starter 
Damn I hope I people reading this in like two years or whatever don't judge me too much for for my terrible track record of the past 24 hours...

I was at work posting when I was supposed to be working so I didn't double check just saw that it wasn't mentioned on the new egg page. Sorry, my bad

My point was still that there seemed to be more powerful-for-less-money AMD chips then Intels.

Maybe my research skills just aren't that good. By the way what's the deal with this "Pentium" anyway? I thought the Pentium name was killed off. And why isn't it "Pentium 5" by the point? Okay it's 1am and I'm rambling so I'll stop now...
 
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post #24 of 33
The Pentium & Celeron lines didn't used to support VT - it is only post Wolfdale that they do. The lower AMD lines have always (mainly) supported VT though, so you're (kinda) right to say that AMD low-end support is better.
post #25 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_beast View Post
As an example:

If you have lots of VMs with relatively high I/O requirements but very low cpu usage requirements, an Atom or other low-power CPU plus an SSD array might be best.

If you do lots of computation, a dual hex-core i7 Xeon build might be best, but it might need only a RAID1 of SATA drives for it's storage system. It might need 3GB RAM, or it might need 288GB RAM.

If you have a mix of VMs, you might need 12 physical cores, 288GB RAM and a fast SSD array. Or you might need an Atom with 2GB RAM and a pair of SATA drives. It all depends what you're trying to do at the time.

Your VM host will depend on your client OSes and their needs - you don't really want to be using unsupported OSes, and if a feature needed (direct hardware access for example) isn't present in a certain software then it would be no good for you, but it might be the best bet for someone else.

In short - this probably won't work iin a single thread - the range of possibilities are too large. A collection of different thread discussions linked from a central place might be a better idea.

Regarding Hyper-V - this is free as part of the Dreamspark Server 2008 Standard licence that students can get from MS.
Eh, atom lags like hell on netbooks and you want use it in server area ? Uh oh, seriously ?

In_order atom cant keep up with modern cpus - which are coming closer to 5W/core

Grab low power Opterons/Xeons (or low power desktop cpus) instead

things changed very little better with atom 500 series , but still its suboptimal - i wouldn´t advise atom system for a friend
Edited by pietro sk - 3/12/11 at 2:18am
    
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post #26 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by pietro sk View Post
Eh, atom lags like hell on netbooks and you want use it in server area ? Uh oh, seriously ?

In_order atom cant keep up with modern cpus - which are coming closer to 5W/core

Grab low power Opterons/Xeons (or low power desktop cpus) instead

things changed very little better with atom 500 series , but still its suboptimal - i wouldn´t advise atom system for a friend
I suggest you re-read my post.

The point is that Atom can cope perfectly well with server roles that require little or no CPU loads - fileserving with a hardware RAID card & a decent NIC for example. Even the original single core Atom can saturate a gigabit ethernet connection quite easily. But they are entirely useless as soon as any computational power is required.

You have to pick your hardware to suit your intended usage - that is why there is no 'best' hardware choice for every situation, and why your 'Grab low power Opterons/Xeons (or low power desktop cpus) instead' is also a nonsense piece of advice. Without knowing what the server is for you can't possibly state hat a low power Operton will be a good idea. If all you want is a basic fileserver there is no point dropping hundreds of dollars on a fancy CPU. But if you go cheap then don't expect it to perform satisfactorily in every situation.
post #27 of 33
yeah, okay
i´ve read about it, atom system hangs even if heavy filesystem task is runnung at background..

i dont own it, but that piece information gains my attention
    
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post #28 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by subassy View Post
My point was still that there seemed to be more powerful-for-less-money AMD chips then Intels.
That's always the case whatever price point you're looking at. AMD mainly competes on price and adjusts their line-up based on Intel's prices. You don't see Intel dropping their price points when AMD has a new chip out. Instead, they phase out older models and release newer, faster ones to compete.

Quote:
Originally Posted by subassy View Post
Maybe my research skills just aren't that good. By the way what's the deal with this "Pentium" anyway? I thought the Pentium name was killed off. And why isn't it "Pentium 5" by the point? Okay it's 1am and I'm rambling so I'll stop now...
Both the Pentium and Celeron names are just branding at this point and do not signify a different architecture. Current Pentiums are a mix of Wolfdale (Core 2 45nm) and Clarkdale (Core i 32nm). The dual-core Celerons are all Wolfdale while the single-core is basically half of a Conroe core (Core 2 65nm). I think there may have also been a Nehalem-based Celeron which was only released to OEM's.

From leaked roadmaps, Intel is slated to release cut-down Sandy Bridge processors under the Celeron brand in Q3'11 while the Pentium Sandy Bridge processors (G600, G800) should be coming out in Q2'11.

Quote:
Originally Posted by the_beast View Post
The Pentium & Celeron lines didn't used to support VT - it is only post Wolfdale that they do. The lower AMD lines have always (mainly) supported VT though, so you're (kinda) right to say that AMD low-end support is better.
Technically, it's not post-Wolfdale as Intel added support starting with Wolfdales released a bit after Windows 7 release date. I believe XP mode (Professional, Ultimate, Enterprise) requiring VT-x probably had something to do with that change.
Edited by rui-no-onna - 3/12/11 at 8:09am
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post #29 of 33
Atoms really aren't bad for servers, but virtualisation might be a stretchm I agree. If you look at the server market today, there's quite some demand for efficient multicore systems. I know one company has a server with 64 ARM chips in it which was very well received. then there's AMD's low power offering (zacate?) which could be interesting.

One of those chips might be laughed at, but cluster them and you might have quite an interesting server for virtualisation.
    
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post #30 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by pietro sk View Post
yeah, okay
i´ve read about it, atom system hangs even if heavy filesystem task is runnung at background..

i dont own it, but that piece information gains my attention
I have an ASROCK 330 "server", with an Intel Atom 330 processor. It runs just fine as a File server & SQL server, actually. The limiting factor isn't so much the processor as it is the chipset - it's got the Intel 945PM chipset, which doesn't support 4GB+ of RAM, and only shows 3.5GB available to the OS.

Of course, this system also happens to be running an OCZ Vertex2 SSD...
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