HP Microserver: mod thread

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Post by Chaser » Tue 05 Jul, 2011 9:53 pm

ill look into it. thanks.
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Post by Splash » Tue 05 Jul, 2011 10:04 pm

spite wrote:
Chaser wrote:http://www.ht.com.au/part/Y4624-HP-Smar ... detail.hts

Thats a pretty good price if it will fit..
Why ? the point is you have low performance drives in the box ... why do you need harware RAID? It's a waste of money.
The ports are also external..
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Post by DreamensioN » Tue 05 Jul, 2011 10:08 pm

That card also says it only support RAID 0 or RAID 10. Not RAID 5.

One of the g33ks on my list is using software RAID 5 with WHS 2011. Says it works well.

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Post by dorift » Tue 05 Jul, 2011 10:33 pm

Not trying to go off track here, but (all the intricacies aside) what would it cost to build something equally capable as this HP offering?
Just a rough example of price would be great. I'm not fussed at all on the enclosure appearance, but would like to be able to run htpc software (be that XBMC or similar) on something that can do hdmi + optical out, with as low power consumption as possible as well as serve files to another room for use with another device (PCH).
What am I looking at price wise to build, since I'm not holding my breath for a HP microserver? :)

Happy to split this to another thread, but really, I'm only looking for a rough estimate of cost; don't want a whole new thread at this stage. :)
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Post by blv » Tue 05 Jul, 2011 10:48 pm

The PC in cams thread would be the go, $350ish I think. It would be cheaper to buy this, and the video and ram Ryan posted on the last page in
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Post by dan » Tue 05 Jul, 2011 11:02 pm

this has roughly the same specs as the HP server... sure, the case isn't as sexy and it doesn't do RAID.. but then the CPU is faster and it is cheaper.

Code: Select all

Aopen ES55C MIDI Tower Case(300W) Black		$63.00	$5.73	$63.00
Kingston 1GB DDR3-1333MHZ		$14.00	$1.27	$14.00
ASRock N68-S3 UCC AM3 GeForce 7025 + nForce M/B		$46.00	$4.18	$46.00
AMD Athlon II X2 Dual Core 255 CPU AM3 3.1GHz (65W)		$61.00	$5.55	$61.00
Seagate SATA III 500GB 16m Cache		$37.00	$3.36	$37.00
Total	$20.91	$221.00
there are some worthwhile upgrades that you could make to it if you didn't want to spend bottom dollar.. like this it would make a good HTPC

Code: Select all

Aopen ES55C MIDI Tower Case(300W) Black		$63.00	$5.73	$63.00
AMD Athlon II X2 Dual Core 255 CPU AM3 3.1GHz (65W)		$61.00	$5.55	$61.00
Kingmax 4G PC-10600 1333MHZ DDR3 Single Stick		$35.00	$3.18	$35.00
Seagate SATAIII 2TB Barracuda 64mb Cache		$86.00	$7.82	$86.00
Asus M4A88TD-M AM3 880G 4DDR3 PCIE RAID VGA GLAN HDMI SATA3 mATX		$91.00	$8.27	$91.00
Total	$30.55	$336.00
the only downside with this is that the case is a little ugly. but then the HP case won't nicely fit into your media center either so who cares. you could probably find a nicer case for the same money if you hunted around, but i cbf-ed doing it for you right now.

when you look at it like this, i really don't see the excitement in the HP things beside the fact that they are 'ready made' and look a little sexier. unless i am missing some key component??
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Post by dorift » Tue 05 Jul, 2011 11:13 pm

Well now thats what I'm getting at Dan.
I'm totally ignorant to the details of this HP thing. I mean, I trust everyone else who says its fucking awesome, but I'm not quite sure I see it entirely.
I want low power (so I can leave it running for 90% of the time without worry) and have it do two things (htpc and serve files) without being a noisy POS. I don't intend having it hold important shit like photos/documents, so I don't really care about RAID setups. If I'm unlucky and lose everything, then so be it. I've got nothing really atm anyway. :)
If I can build something with some strong advice along the lines of what you've just posted up, then maybe I needn't be concerned about missing out on this HP thingameebob.
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Post by Splash » Wed 06 Jul, 2011 7:25 am

It isn't really fair to compare the machine dan specced to the microserver.

He's priced up a normal tower case and components to suit, rather than micro-ITX which is closer to the same form factor as the HP. Micro-ITX components are generally more expensive than the bigger stuff.
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Post by cGr » Wed 06 Jul, 2011 8:54 am

Micro ITX will be better on the power consumption too.

The thing which I like a LOT about the microservers are the case and psu. The case is well designed, have a lot of space standard (and enough holes to throw additional hard drives in to later) as well as enough space for add-on cards. Power supply is efficient.

Graham: A comparable spec for what you are going to use it for, a motherboard with a built in E350 AMD CPU (and HDMI out) for $158 and 2gb of ram is cheap ($20). You are going to throw storage at either solution so I dont see that as a separate cost, although the included 250gb drive in the HP is a neat little bonus. You could always use an old drive for your OS, and if you're running WHS it will just add free space to the pool anyway.

And then there's the case and power supply. You can spend anything from ~$50, up to many hundreds depending on the design. Mid range is going to be in the ~$100-$150 (for both case and psu), which puts the end build around $300 depending on which way you go.

So yeh, the microserver is cheaper, and you get a great case with much more space potential. You can spec up a similar box for similar dollars, but the microserver will be on par at these dollars, and with the microserver you will get a lot of quality that you dont see (it is a HP server afterall).

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Post by spitex » Wed 06 Jul, 2011 9:13 am

+ a HP Business warranty where they have been replacing components left right an centre on any whim of a request. From ticking/louder than noisy power supplies to scratched cases. I have seen 5 or 6 people complain about something wrong with the MS' and then HP warranty shipping them a replacement part the next day. You wont get that either.

There's nothing worse than paying for stuff twice, no matter how much you saved the first time.

Like I have said, time and time again with reference to these things. When you see IT professionals going "ga ga" over hardware there's usually a reason.

Sure, you might miss out, but I have read post after post you put on redlineAU about your frustrations with computers/networking etc - much to do with old hardware. This is a quality device that will do what you're asking it to do and all while using alot less power than the system Dan posted. Sure, his has a more powerful CPU, but your requirements state 'low power', HTPC + NAS. Well, a NAS doesn't need a powerful CPU and nor does a HTPC because the video card does the heavy lifting. The CPU Dan linked at full song pulls more power than the Microservers.

To give you an example.

I was copying at 110mbytes/s over a Gigabit network to the RAID5 array in the box. I was downloading from the net at 1.4 mbyte/s and processing 50 rar files at a time into various folders on the RAID array AAAAAANNNNDDDD was doing this while watching a Avatar 3D 40GB BluRay. It didn't skip a frame. I was shocked myself as I expected the RAR and ZIP processing to kill it. It didn't. When doing all of the above with the exception of compression processing, the cpu's rolled back to 800mhz from 1300mhz.

The one thing I will say. If you're building dedicated HTPC's, there are benefits to a custom build, or even just using an Apple TV2. Any 'silent' HTPC still requires network attached storage in another room so you still need a 'NAS'. The MicroServer might not fit in an AV cabinet and it might be a little noisier then a 'silent HTPC' because it has 4-5 disk drives in it, but it still does it better than most (almost any) combo options. It also has more expansion slots than a standard MiniITX board anyway.

Honestly mate, this is the last time I will say it cause I really have said it enough times. They are worth every dollar under $300 and yes, Dan has missed 'something'.

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Post by dorift » Wed 06 Jul, 2011 2:52 pm

I apologize for prompting you to go over old ground, I guess I get the point.
But one thing you mention is part of why I was so muddled on what benefit I'd get from the HP... you say all the tech geeks are going ga-ga.
Sure, it can do so much for such a small (relative) cost, but how much of it's potential would I actually need/use.
Nevermind expanding any further, I was just trying to clarify what it can do so much better than a custom build.
I guess my conclusion is that it can do what a custom built box can do, but in a smaller form factor (for the cost) and with a LOT more potential over just basic HTPC+server. I'm just not sure I need the 'more' bit, but ive been swooped up by the craze so much that I've convinced myself I do need it. I think. Probably not lol.
When I get a chance I'll start a thread for you peeps to give me advice in how to layout a wired network in my house, and that's about when I'll probably be wanting a damn HP Micro. :)
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Post by spitex » Wed 06 Jul, 2011 3:15 pm

dorift wrote: I'm not fussed at all on the enclosure appearance, but would like to be able to run htpc software (be that XBMC or similar) on something that can do hdmi + optical out, with as low power consumption as possible as well as serve files to another room for use with another device (PCH).
Ok, so you want a HTPC with a NAS.
dorift wrote: Sure, it can do so much for such a small (relative) cost, but how much of it's potential would I actually need/use.
A microserver does both, flawlessly all at the same time.

So how much more are you going to talk yourself out of this now? You sound like Ash trying to decide what car to buy next.


---

..... I have spent years looking for alternative to this, and nothing will come close to the features offered for that price of a HP Microserver.

It's that simple.

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Post by dorift » Wed 06 Jul, 2011 3:30 pm

Haha, it's not entirely a matter of talking myself out of it.
It's been a case of determining exactly what I'd be missing out on, purely due to financial constraints at this exact point in time. In other words, considering these things are selling like hotcakes, I have tried to ascertain what i could get that's comparable when I do have disposable income available (at which point I forsee these being long-gone).
I'm not challenging their abilities, just trying to understand exactly how second-rate a custom built box might be for my requirements. :D
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Post by SecaBoy » Wed 06 Jul, 2011 6:56 pm

spite wrote:You sound like Ash trying to decide what car to buy next.
OI! what a load of sh.......nah, you're right... :lol:


i've convinced myself that i have to get one... i'm hoping they have stock after the 15th... LOL
if they dont have any stock, then, well, good way to force myself to save money... :P hahaha
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Post by blv » Wed 06 Jul, 2011 8:30 pm

spite wrote:
Chaser wrote:anything i need to know when purchasing ram apart from size? is all ddr3 not the same?
Fits: GSkill 8G(2x4G) DDR3 1333 PC10600 (F3-10600CL9D-8GBNT) - $68
Fits: Kingston 8GB(2 X 4GB) DDR3-1333MHZ PC10600 - $79

The Kingston RAM is also half height, so there's loads of clearance.

With the video card, make sure you buy a lower power one, like a GT210.

All you want is HDMI+Sound, and a GT210 is all you need. Throwing a 430 (Give you 3D) or a 520 which require cutting heatsinks, possible power issues and also extra noise from fans.

Both of these work well. Zotac is well known for their niche 'small' PC's and components.

Zotac GT210 1G DDR2 DVI-I HDCP HDMI LP Synergy Ed - $46
Zotac GT210 512MB DDR2 DVI-I HDCP HDMI LP - $36

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With the Zotacs, the Low Profile backplates come in the box and you need to put them on.

Of the items listed above, I have bought the ones above in bold and they work fine. I am pretty sure JnrZilla has the 512MB Zotac 210 and it works a treat too.
I am just going to put Win7 32bit on mine so 4gb will do. Wil the same brand (Kingston) in 2x2 also fit? Or do you think it would be worthy to go the 64bit OS and run 8gb ram (I will get the 1GB HDMI video card and use this unit as a HTPC)?

Lastly, where did you get those parts prices from? Umart?
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Post by spitex » Wed 06 Jul, 2011 11:04 pm

Everything I price will be from Umart or PCCaseGear.com.au unless I link it. 9 times out of 10, it will be Umart Milton.

Why would you EVER buy a 32bit OS, when a 64bit is the same cost? You can run 2GB of ram on 64bit, and guess what, one day you can upgrade it.

32 bit, you're fucked/capped forever - total waste of $$'s.

8GB of Ram is $69 ..... ?

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Post by dan » Wed 06 Jul, 2011 11:33 pm

the only 'thing' i missed was a sexy case. component wise everything else was equal or better. and i'm sure there are much better cases out there for cheap, i just cbf-ed looking for them. the microserver case is pretty terrible for putting in a home entertainment cabinet anyway, so i don't see it being that superior anyway??

something like an aopen h360 (which umart sell for $85 when they have stock) has much better dimensions for a HTPC than the microserver

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what am i 'missing' ??
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Post by blv » Thu 07 Jul, 2011 6:32 am

Ryan, the 32 bit was free. Will all my programs work on the 64bit? I do have 7 ultimate 64bit :)
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Post by DreamensioN » Thu 07 Jul, 2011 10:24 am

64-bit XP was a bit dodgy.

64-bit Vista was a lot better.

64-bit Windows 7 is airtight.

You will have no problems running 32-bit apps on Windows 7 x64.

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Post by Jonesy » Thu 07 Jul, 2011 2:24 pm

So when are we going to get our g33k on and build these things,

cause i know i'll screw something up if i do it myself with out help

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