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Windows 2008 R2 Server for Hyper-V Spec

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November 30, 2010 9:47:27 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: This week or next

BUDGET RANGE: $1500-$1800 - Before / After Rebates and if it is flexible

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Hyper-V system Testing, Microsoft Products (SQL,Exchange), part time Video Editing but not main use

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Parts not needed keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: NewEgg is my prefered website but open to some suggestions

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: (United States )

PARTS PREFERENCES: Full-Tower, 80+ Power Supply, Redudancy not required, Intel Xeon (I think), 16-24 Gig of RAM. ESATA would be nice, Intel NIC (Dual Port) Prefereably

OVERCLOCKING: NO

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Maybe

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Runs Cool and Efficient

Form Factor: Tower

Disk Controllers - SATA Drives no RAID is needed

I am trying to build a new server as my old AMD machine died and I thought I would spend the money on building a Server with a couple of 1 Tb Spindles and lots of memory. Any input as to what Chassis to buy, Motherboads, and CPU would be great. I have built a bunch of systems for general use such as a Core I7 920 with EVGA SLI Motherboard. I was thinking that I would try a Xeon Dual or Quad for a HYPER-V server that I could potentially use to test other Virtualization techologies.


Thoughts or comments welcome Server build is a new space for me so I am interested in what is the best sources to read about building a server other than the forums.

December 1, 2010 3:28:59 PM

How many virtual machines do you want to run at the same time. You should have at least 1 core per virtual client, plus one or two for the host. If you want to run 4 virtual clients, then you need 5 or 6 cores, which for practical systems means two 4 core CPUs, which means a server motherboard. and the standard for memory for a virtual host is at least 32GB of ram.
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December 1, 2010 3:41:10 PM

It is not a permanent solution for server applications it is purely test lab and development work. So I would agree with the 1:1 core and virtual client. I am just looking for something that I can use in a lab environment for now and run at least 8-10 VMS for some integration testing of full systems. Again something like 16 Gig to start but would love to be able to bump to 24 and 32 gb as the money becomes available. Can I get a system with 16 now with 6 Memory slots that would allow me to put in 3x8 GB of memory and then at a later date add another 24 for 48?

I saw a barebones ASUS chassis and motherboard that supported Xeon Dual core proc but the memory config has me perplexed especially when you said the standard is 32 Gb of memory how did you get 32 gb of memory?
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December 1, 2010 5:11:48 PM

When I want a server just for test, I buy an old 1U pizza box server or a 2U server with Dual Xeon CPUs for $100 to $200, or a quad core for $600 to $800. Check Craig's List. Just make sure that the CPUs have hardware virtualization support. VMware doesn't require it, but Microsoft Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V does.
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December 1, 2010 8:14:05 PM

Thanks I have gone that route but I was looking to build it just for the fun part of it.

Dino
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January 14, 2011 11:42:31 PM

As far as cost vs value I would like into the new AMD Magny-Cours (8 & 12 core variants) chips and a dual socket motherboard for expandability if your looking to avoid spending a fortune, but get the most bang for your buck. After all it's just for a virtualization test lab. Should be able to max out well over 32 GB of memory.

Or if you aren't in a hurry; I believe the Bulldozer server line is slated for Q3 2011. It's supposed to incorporate some new features like turbocore (AMD version of TurboBoost), etc.

I would also look into hardware comparability (whiteboxing) for VMware ESXi, since it is basically the industry standard for virtualization technology. Gonna wanna make sure the motherboard you get has driver comparability for NIC, storage controllers, and so forth.
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