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Project Balrog

This is the build log of my Folding At Home Rack Build. I've already had them built as far as function but they were all caseless and completely disorganized as you can see:

Before!!!!
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AFTER!!!!

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now to keep things nice and neat, the only solution i could come to terms with would be to use server 4U cases and a rack. Well, if you're going to do something you might as well go all out, right?

My builds consist of:

Intel i7 2600K's @4.5ghz+
MSI P67-GD55
w/e ram i can afford *normally it's 4gigs of DDR3 1600
Corsair H50's and a H70
Antec, OCZ, or Corsair Power Supplies

The builds goal are as follows:

1) To allow future upgrades without using more of a footprint in sq. ft. in my place.

2) Keep everything much more organized and neat for when company comes over.

3) To make it look freaking awesome!!!!!

Parts

Ok so I already have a rough idea of what I wanted as far as a Server Rack. I want something that looks like it belongs in a Google farm or a Cray but without the price tag.
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well since i don't have that kinda money, but wanted a good brand, I went with Dell. Now they have a few to choose from, but why not go with the best one: the Dell PowerEdge 4220

Now this rack is perfect for what I need and I got it locally for $500 bucks. Now that's a used price, but nothing is really wrong with it. Just some scuffs here and there but that's no big deal. The big downer here is that the entire unit weighed about 300 something pounds so unloading it from my truck in 100degree heat was pretty bad. I ended up taking it apart completely and then bringing it up piece by piece

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Now I needed to find a case for each rig. After looking around and finding one that had good airflow and space, I settled on this: Norco RPC-470. Now the great thing about this case is that I can have 2x120mm fans up front and then there is a whole row of 80mm fans behind that to push everything over the motherboard and to feed the coolers. Downside is that there isn't much flow out of the case, but I'll see what I can do about that using some PCI slot coolers.

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When I get home today I'll double check and make sure it's still folding. If so, I'll start breaking down my other rigs and start converting them over to the cases.
 

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Now i have some pictures of it setup here's what it looks like before I make custom length Cat6 and all that. I just needed to get 3 rigs back up and folding. It's also a test to hear the noise levels with the stock fans that came with the cases. Needless to say, they are loud. Not OVERWHELMING, but they are louder than my other builds. I'll be replacing them with some nice and quiet ones and then I will be in tip top condition to keep this rigs on 24/7 and not bother me in the quiet evenings.

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Now that I have it in place, Now it's time for all the connections and starting up each rig. Since I don't have the KVM switch that I want yet *it's a 500 Cat5 KVM switch*, I'll have to make due with what i have right now. I'm going to get everything routed up so that way they can at least fold while I'm making the transition.

I have 1 complete folding rig sitting off to the side because i need to order more cases. I wanted to see how these were going to hold up before I spent more $ on cases. I'll go ahead and order them on Tuesday when I get back to the office. Once that happens then it will be time for custom goodies! Maybe a little air bushing some OCN stuff on the rack and that good stuff!
 

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Update 10/24/11: I've just gotten my new cases in today and installed them into the rack. First off, I moved my Team Challenge X6 rig into the rack. This rig was just sitting on a card board box for the past few months so it's about time it moved into the rack
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I have plans on actually fitting 2 AMD x6's into that 4u case so stay tuned for that!

Here are the new cases and how they work in the rack.

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Update! 12-16-12

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Discussion Starter #7
Quote:
Originally Posted by csm725;14054276
I see Ubuntu 11.04 on the lappie
o_O
that's actually the "Terminal" where I use my KVM switch to go from each build and start them up without having to unplug and plug vga and usb connectors.
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all my rigs are running the new version of ubuntu just because i felt like upgrading. There was no real difference that I saw from a performance standpoint.

each rig will do about 60K ppd doing bigadv folding so that's not bad compared to the windows rigs i had that were only hitting 47ish
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by AMD SLI guru;14054296
that's actually the "Terminal" where I use my KVM switch to go from each build and start them up without having to unplug and plug vga and usb connectors.
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but still... i see unity
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anyways looks like a smart idea, how many copies of the rig will you be sticking in there?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Quote:
Originally Posted by csm725;14054309
but still... i see unity
frown.gif

anyways looks like a smart idea, how many copies of the rig will you be sticking in there?
I'll have 4 to start with. Once bulldozer rolls out and we see what they can do, I can evaluate each build on a performance per cost basis. As of right now I have 4 complete rigs total and i've already started beta testing on the fastest rig *4.9ghz* in the case to see if it can handle the stress of being in a case vs. caseless. If all goes well tonight, I'll start switching the others over tomorrow, but it's going to be a slow process since each one needs to be setup correctly and properly for max airflow
 

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any chance I can get a picture of 2 of them stacked? Kinda wanna see how well they stack without the rack. Since I'm ghetto rigging it I won't have the nice dell enclosure
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SS_Patrick;14054637
any chance I can get a picture of 2 of them stacked? Kinda wanna see how well they stack without the rack. Since I'm ghetto rigging it I won't have the nice dell enclosure
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I'll post some pictures tomorrow of that for ya.
 

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I'm excited to see the result. I just completed a rack setup myself for some folding rigs. I went with an older 2 post telco relay rack from Homaco. The rack is probably a good foot taller then me and I'm 5'10". But it gets the job done and was a cheap find off craigslist so I'm happy with it.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Quote:


Originally Posted by zzM
View Post

I'm excited to see the result. I just completed a rack setup myself for some folding rigs. I went with an older 2 post telco relay rack from Homaco. The rack is probably a good foot taller then me and I'm 5'10". But it gets the job done and was a cheap find off craigslist so I'm happy with it.

that's what the idea was originally but I wanted something enclosed and 4 posts. This rack is about 7ft tall so it's in that same ballpark as yours as far as height goes.

did you have a build log on yours? i would love to see pictures!
 

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Quote:


Originally Posted by AMD SLI guru
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that's what the idea was originally but I wanted something enclosed and 4 posts. This rack is about 7ft tall so it's in that same ballpark as yours as far as height goes.

did you have a build log on yours? i would love to see pictures!


I always want to do some kind of build log whenever I put something together but never end up doing it
I'll post some pics up tomorrow!
 

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Nice! You should cut some exhaust slots in those boxes, just to be safe.
 

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I was considering it, but it would have to be on the opposite side of the H70/H50 and PSU. at that point it would just be easier to get some of these coolers.

Btw, I like your home theater setup!
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I'm using a polk setup and love it
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