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Windows Home Server 2011

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December 25, 2011 6:58:55 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: Next 30 days

Budget Range: 500ish low as possible but want a solid machine.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Media Server(specifically as cable tv replacement),Backup, Fileshare

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, Mouse, dvd, monitor, case (have Full ATX & Mid), I have the server software
Preferred Website(s) for Parts:Newegg but open to suggestion

Country:USA

Parts Preferences: by brand or type None, but I was curious about the amd Llano

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: Yes / No / Maybe

Monitor Resolution: 1024x768 HD streaming
Additional Comments: Thanks for spending your time to take a look. I haven't been able to locate a good guide to building the hardware for a home server so throw me a link. I'm familiar with building and oc pc's.

Mike
December 26, 2011 1:47:14 PM

Did I choose the wrong forum for this one?
December 26, 2011 3:07:40 PM

Are you looking for it to be headless or not (normal computer with specs of a server and a screen or an actual server)? Do you want to SSH/telnet into it or FTP or other. But IMO for a streaming server you'll be better of using CentOS or another linux distro.
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December 26, 2011 3:55:31 PM

jordandoyle said:
Are you looking for it to be headless or not (normal computer with specs of a server and a screen or an actual server)? Do you want to SSH/telnet into it or FTP or other. But IMO for a streaming server you'll be better of using CentOS or another linux distro.


I'm looking for it to be headless. I want to use it to sync with the various pc's/xbox in the house.

Best solution

January 13, 2012 11:49:29 PM
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mchljrdn said:
I'm looking for it to be headless. I want to use it to sync with the various pc's/xbox in the house.


I don't know if this will answer any of your questions, I will just tell you what I am doing to maybe get you thinking a bit.

I am making two systems, one is a headless server to hold files and backups and the other is an htpc.

I have a small 6U rackmount enclosure to put the headless server into.
Both systems will be very similar, but my focus is low power consumption and the ability to stream 1080p rips, and pull game iso's and other things off the server when we have LAN parties.

Server Specs: $240 since I have the HDDs
Case: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... (Big reason this particular one was chosen is cost obviously, but most important was the number of HDD's I could fit into it, 4-6 3.5" drives)
MB: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... (Fusion system is more than adequate to do a software RAID 1 in WHS and supply everything I need over my gigabit and wireless N network)
RAM: 4GB, nothing special, but don't need much
HDD: Starting with 2x 2TB Seagate drives in RAID 1, will add 2x 3TB or larger when prices go back down (may be waiting awhile :(  )
PSU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... (more than enough power)

So very simple WHS, low power consumption, plenty of power to provide files to other machines and could easily stream 1080p if you aren't using a different htpc like I will. Even do some light gaming if desired.

HTPC Specs: Depending on MB, $350-$450
Case: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... (feel free to get cheaper, but I like the look and I need one pci slot available for the tv tuner and the really small itx cases don't have that space.)
MB: This is the MB I want for it, the new Fusion chipset from AMD, but they have yet to release it for purchase (http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/AMD_CPU_on_Board/E45M1...), so I am currently waiting for this one, but the e350 version here (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...) was deactivated recently on Newegg, so hopefully that is a good sign. But that is the one I want for the htpc (built in BT, wifi, Optical audio, HDMI, USB 3.0 and more!, although I mainly want it for the optical as I have a gigabit port right in the wall to hook it into)
Basically the same MB that will go into the server, just with some added features (that aren't necessary for my server, so saving the money there)
RAM: 4GB, again, not much RAM is needed for streaming content
HDD: Probably a 60-120GB SSD drive. Don't need space as that is what the server is for. Just need it to be snappy and that will be more than sufficient to hold W7 installation and XBMC or MCE
PSU: Same as above
TV Tuner: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... or http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... then will get the Logitech Harmony 650 Remote to use. I can then record tv shows directly to the server, no worries about space on htpc!
Could put a BluRay player in, but I have a PS3 for that.

In the end I am looking at an idle power consumption of around 45-60w on the server and 45-50w on the htpc

There are some other good mini ITX fusion boards, Asrock has a good one with a lot of features and could cut $50-$75 off the price.

Since I already have a lot of the pieces, it will cost me about $500 for the two. But as you can see, my vote would be to get a fusion board. The e350 chipset is awesome! No need to SLI or Crossfire if your just making a backup and fileshare server with streaming as well. It will pump out 1080p without a problem.

Good luck, hope that helps!

Edit: Obviously my one is going to be hidden away and the other will be out in the open. If you don't care what case you have it in and how big it is, then you have more options, but I would still recommend Fusion, just get one of the mATX board if you want.
I realized that may not have helped above as you are only making one system.
If I was only making the server, I would choose the deluxe board linked above, then a case big enough to fit in 4-6 3.5" drives. (my recommendation is this one - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168..., tons of space and looks good too. Saw this on sale for $69 on Newegg with free shipping and I picked one up for another build.) Then build it with your storage, toss in a tuner card and you have it all in one box at a very very good price. I just wanted to keep things separate and make the htpc easy for my wife to use.
May 8, 2012 1:50:49 PM

Best answer selected by mchljrdn.
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