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~$2000 Workstation

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Last response: in Systems
October 21, 2010 11:37:10 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: This Week

Budget Range: (e.g.: 600-800): $2,000-$2,200

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Will be using Win 2008 R2 as operating system because I need to use Hyper-V virtualization for testing.

Parts Not Required: (e.g.: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS): Keyboard, Mouse, Monitor, Speakers, OS

Preferred Website(s) for Parts:

Country of Origin: U.S.

Parts Preferences: Intel Processor i7, 16-24 GB Ram, SSD Drive (256GB), 1 TB secondary drive

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080, dual monitors

Additional Comments:

I haven't built a system in about 2.5 years so I'm a little behind in the newest Mobos, etc.

The system will be used as my primary work computer and I need to do testing using virtual machines with Hyper-V so I obviously need a lot of RAM and would like an SSD as my primary drive for boot and programs. The processor can be a mid-range i7.

Any recommendation for any of the components would be greatly appreciated.

More about : 2000 workstation

October 21, 2010 11:50:22 PM

If you are running massive VMs, I recommend a true workstation/server. Something like this:

HAF 912 $60:

2x Xeon 5506 $ 470:

OCZ Vertex 2 120GB SSD for OS + programs $240:
(You can RAID0 these if you really need more storage).

XFX 650W $110 (Note, needs separate Molex to 8pin CPU, ~$5) :
See edit.

ASUS Z8NA-D6C $260:

2x 500GB F3s for storage in RAID1 $110:

2x 3*2GB Crucial DDR3 ECC RAM $325:

EVGA GTX460 (mainly due to good OpenGL performance, don't need much of a high end workstation card for VM, a cheap nVidia GTS210/220 will do) $170:

Total: $1,742.06 before rebates.

Note: I just copied this from one of my previous posts, you can change the GTX460 and you will need to add CPU heatsinks.

You can see my entire post here:

Also note, Sandy Bridge will be out by December. You may want to consider waiting. HOWEVER, I don't think you will see any Sandy Bridge server boards (esp. 2P)/CPUs for a while so you may build now. It's up to you.

Swap the above PSU with this:
October 22, 2010 12:29:53 AM

Thanks for the quick response.

I will be using the vm's only a portion of the time and it is not something that I need to leave running all the time.

I will be using the system for my daily use also for web, email, etc.

I would like a little more than 12GB for when I do have to run a few vm's and more on-board usb ports.
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October 22, 2010 12:39:19 AM

I would like a little more than 12GB for when I do have to run a few vm's and more on-board usb ports.

Why exactly do you need more RAM? How much do you reserve for the VM? You should be fine with a 2x 4GB VM running at once.

As for USB, you can use a hub or PCI USB.

If you really want more than 12GB get 2x sets of this:
October 22, 2010 12:46:16 AM

What would be the advantage of having the Xeon processors instead of the i7? Are the Xeon processors good for normal day-to-day computing when I'm not using the VM's?
October 22, 2010 1:25:00 AM

^ No. The only reason I used the Xeons is because it is needed for 2P set up.

If you are running a 1P set up, there are a few advantages to Xeon such as the ability to use ECC RAM. That's pretty much it. In every other sense, they are the same thing as i7s except a bit higher binned (read: usually use less vCore).