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Build Opinion - VMs and Home Theatre

Last response: in Systems
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September 30, 2011 8:38:24 PM

Hi all,

I'm piecing together a build mainly for Virtual Machines (lab environment), streaming to home theatre. Any opinions on this?

1- Intel Core i7-2600K Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo Boost) 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I72600K

1 - Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

1 - ASUS P8Z68-V PRO LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS

1 - Seasonic SS-560KM Active PFC F3, 560W ATX12V V2.3/EPS 12V V2.91, 80Plus Gold Certified, Modular Power Supply

2 - G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL8D-8GBXM (16GB total RAM)

1 - Corsair Carbide Series 500R Black Steel structure with molded ABS plastic accent pieces ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

I will later include an SDD for the Asus board smart caching. Possibly a second video card but the onboard is enough for now. I plan to get a SAN with iSCSI support to store the Virtual Machines (Maybe the Seagate Seagate BlackArmor NAS 440, 4TB (ST340005SHA10G-RK). Dual boot Server 2008 and Win7.

Anything I should add to this or not do? Thanks!

October 2, 2011 7:50:22 AM

You can save yourself some money with a Samsung Spinpoint F3. They're the same performance and they're quieter than the WD drives.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

560W is WAY too much for onboard video. Try this 350W Antec. That will be plenty for a non-gaming computer and you can even add a light graphics card like a 5670.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

If you're getting 16GB RAM (which is overkill in most situations but it's also what I have) then get one 4x4GB kit. They're usually the same price as two 2x4GB kits and RAM that all comes in the same kit is timed to work together. The performance may or may not be noticable, but if it's the same price then get them all together. At newegg the 4x4GB kit is actually cheaper than two 2x4GB kits.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
October 2, 2011 11:57:29 PM

Get the non - K i7 2600. It offers some more virtualization extension that the K version doesn't ;) 

Intel Core i7-2600 Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo Boost) 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I72600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

You can save a lot of $$ from buying a cheaper Z68 motherboard. Here's a good alternative

GIGABYTE GA-Z68X-UD3H-B3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

For Virtual Machines you need CPU cores and a lot of RAM, so a 16GB kit with 1.5V as Intel suggests is the choice here :) 

CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CML16GX3M4A1600C9
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Related resources
October 3, 2011 12:20:30 AM

michxymi said:
Get the non - K i7 2600. It offers some more virtualization extension that the K version doesn't


I've never heard of that. Can you provide some documentation?
October 3, 2011 12:35:56 AM

Looks like you are on the right track. I would second the i7-2600 (non K) and going with the Samsung F3 for a fast, cost effective solutions. Skip the SAN and go with additional drives as it will be cheaper and maybe more responsive in the VM setup. Just keep the hosting to two or three VMs per spindle to keep access times reasonable.
October 6, 2011 12:20:31 AM

Thanks all for the comments and suggestions. Gave me a few things to seriously consider. Didn't know about the VT-d in the 2600, thanks!
!