I have a Dell Poweredge 6350 with 4 Pentium 3 Xeon processors, 2 Gbyte Ram, 4x36 Gbyte SCSI UW. The thing is heavy, big and very, very noisy. Is there a way I can take some of the parts (CPU + HD's) onto a non Dell motherboard and build a quiet desktop? Or is there a way of transplanting the Dell Motherboard with all peripherals into a third-party case and PSU that will be quiet? I would like to use the machine as general back-up and data server in my home network.
Well I hate to break it to you but it's just a rack mount POS being that old. It will cost you more money to FIND an OLD motherboard to support that PIII and then the memory... you can't use the ECC memory is some el cheapo motherboards. your best bet is to sell that sucker on ebay, and put the money towards a low end dell workstation for $350 and then add storage to it. Even the cheapest, slowest, crappiest, junkiest, worst (you get the idea) modern box computer will run circles around that old PIII setup. Besides just for storage and data backup you don't need much horsepower at all.
not to mention the heat, weight, size, and power consumption of any rack mount server, specially the old 6xxx series from Dell. Those suckers are great for certain things. We still use 6650's and 6850's because the number of drives and HBA's they will hold. Well at any rate, it's just not worth fiddling with. It will use about the same amount of power in 3-4 months that a cheap workstation will consume in a year.