Although I know quite a lot about the standard desktop, I know very little about servers. My dad has asked me to build a server for his office, and his needs being storage and running programs, I have come up with the following:
FX 4100 (Buy a Phenom II 965 BE and Hyper 212 EVO to replace mine while I put it in the server)
MSI 970-G46 Motherboard
8GB Crucial DDR3 1333 RAM
Seagate Barracuda 500GB HDD
LG 24X DVD Burner
His budget is around $300. I told him I'd pitch in for the heatsink. A friend of my mom's gave me a large enough case today for it (Had a dead Sempron and AM2 motherboard in it). I also have my spare Rosewill Stallion 450w and GT 430 for it. He needs to run programs such as DS-Pro and store his small collection of files on it. First of all, will this system be adequate for his needs now and for at least 5 years? Secondly, what OS should I use for it? Will it be fine using Windows 7 or should I go for a server edition? Thanks.
My answer here is a rather broad generalization, but I think it fits.
If he's building a personal server, I assume a few clients will log on to this server.
I am not sure how many and for what uses, but as a rule, servers benefit more from more threads and lower clock speeds.
If you can find an octacore cpu (one of the AMD 8xxx series) , I believe it will make his computer far more future proof.
Also, for storage, I suggest a small NAS setup up (google it) for RAID0.
This will ensure less possibility of data loss and , if the budget it up for it, maybe set up a raid 5 for increased speed.
At some point I probably will drop in an 8120 and an extra 8GB of RAM but for now the budget doesn't allow it. And for data loss issues, he uses carbonite (despite my pleading not to). Basically it's just him and my mom together in the office, with adding maybe 1 or 2 computers down the road. He wants it so everyone can access files and everyone can use DSPro (which for some reason can only be on one computer). I'm not too positive if it can run like that, but he says other insurance agents do it.