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Trying to decide to, build or buy Multimedia Distribution Server

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August 28, 2011 5:14:12 PM

Ok I started to post all the info on what I have currently and try and figure out why its not working but I decided against that because I was 3 pages in and hadnt even got to my problem lol.
So I just want to hear what people would suggest for what im trying to do.

Trying to decide against building or buying a server to allow me to Distribute Multimedia Content over multiple computers, and media extenders on a Gigabit Lan Network, and remote access in from multiple computers to access content. When I say Multiple computers I do mean at the same time. On the Gigabit LAN anywhere from 4 to six possible at one time. On the remote access streaming maximum of 4 possible users at once.

I have a 100 up, 10 down business Cable Internet Plan that legally allows me to have a server on my network so no ISP problems.

Secondly I already have a pretty decent rack mount system with over 15TB of hard drive space but I am having issues. My Google Server. 2x Duel core 3.2 Xeon CPU's, 12G of Ram, 5x 250G Hard Drives = 1.25TB, Google Yellow.... Bought this in December 2009.

But I am not trying to DIAG that system.


I build gaming machines, but Servers are alot different. I will say as far as parts. I have these processors left over from benchmark systems I can use. I have Two I7-980x, Two I7-970, Two I7-920. I also have One I5-2500k, and One I3-2105.
Graphics cards, tons of memory, tons of hard drives, several SSD's, Sound cards, and much more.

Looking for a way to be able to stream multiple 1080p .x264 6 to 8GB videos over a gigabit network at the same time and not have the video buffering all day. If possible I would also like to be able to have the video auto scale up and down based on connection of the person that is remote accessing video content, or someway of manually allowing a person to select lower quality video so they wont have to buffer as much without having to load multiple copies of the video to the server for different resolutions.

I have roughly 1000cd's I have ripped as lossless. about 600GB worth and buffering kills the mood. In my house I can have 4 or 5 content feeds being pulled from the server at once and buffering just really sucks. 2 TB of pictures between us.

I say multimedia because its the most demanding thing, but I also want the server to store documents as well but that was never an issue before multimedia is where I ran into crazy problems.


When I built my first server everyone said and research also seemed to say I didnt need a graphics card beyond something to just hook a monitor to nothing special needed. Everything I read before for what I wanted to do basically said Decent Processor, tons of hard drive space to store all the content, and a bunch of memory.

Buffering is the devil obviously if its possible to build from stuff I already have which should be possible considering the 980x or essentially lil Xeon Processors, but If I don't need that then fine. I have a budget of $3800. Any and all help would be greatly appreciated because having media extenders is nice and I would like having to avoid building HTPC's to replace each xbox 360's, PS3's, Logitech Revue, and Apple Tv.

August 30, 2011 3:30:04 AM

with your setup and light load I'm surprised you have buffering issues.
I'm assumiung your audio is in 24bit/192k format and h264 typically only requires a 1Mb connection so you should handle your 10 users just fine I would think.

Do you have the files already encoded or is your server encoding/re-encoding on the fly? From the sounds of it you are reencoding and in that case yes its possible GPU acceleration would help provided whatever you are usinig can use GPU acceleration.

have you tested your network thoroughput? Are you getting gigabit speeds transferring files?

have you tested your servers HDD's transfer speeds?

Lots of ideas but need more info....

how is your network layed out?
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