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Stone
March 1st, 2014, 08:56 AM
I want to get an i7 with 16 GB RAM for a new server in a client's office and I'm looking for suggestions. They seem to be pretty pricey, so far, so I'm hoping someone has a better source to recommend to me than what I've seen so far. C'mon, you cheepskates, don't fail me now. :-)

Agent Orange
March 1st, 2014, 09:26 AM
I want to get an i7 with 16 GB RAM for a new server in a client's office and I'm looking for suggestions. They seem to be pretty pricey, so far, so I'm hoping someone has a better source to recommend to me than what I've seen so far. C'mon, you cheepskates, don't fail me now. :-)

Are you going to build it yourself from scratch or will it off the shelf?

An Intel Core i7-3770K (http://pcpartpicker.com/part/intel-cpu-bx80637i73770k) (would be my choice - best bang for the buck) is current going for about $320. I would look for a bundle but expect to pay about $500 or so and I would want an Intel or Asus mobo. The Intel Core i7 Processors - LGA1155 socket have integrated graphics and could save you a few bucks, as you won't be needing a high-end graphic card for a server. RAM seems to be a cheap as its ever been.

Stone
March 1st, 2014, 09:33 AM
I'm going to buy, not build it. :-)

Agent Orange
March 1st, 2014, 09:49 AM
I'm going to buy, not build it. :-)

Start with this link as a reference: http://www.nixsys.com/nx58-mt.html

You didn't mention your budget.

Stone
March 1st, 2014, 10:06 AM
Whatever I have to spend. :-) But I'd like to find something somewhat less than the one above, if possible.

krebizfan
March 1st, 2014, 10:18 AM
If you truly want to get the lowest price possible, follow Dealnews.com and wait for Dell or HP to have a sale with extreme discounts for a refurbished model. Right now, Dell's XPS 8700 with 8GB of RAM tends to run about $700 and frequently a 30% discount on refurbs is offered. Buy the extra RAM yourself; it will be a lot cheaper.

Note: Unless the client planning to do a lot of video encoding, the hyperthreading of the I7 won't have much benefit. They can save $100 or more by switching to a quad-core I5 and never notice the difference. I would not drop down to an I3 because generally there aren't any sales that result in good savings compared to the I5.

Agent Orange
March 1st, 2014, 11:26 AM
Being that you're doing a server, what thought have you given to storage? Do you plan on using a RAID setup or some cloud subscription? FWIW, for a few extra bucks the I7 is still my choice. My current laptop (HP EliteBook 8560w) has a Core I7-2820 @ 2.3 GHz w/ 24 GB of RAM. The performance under W7-64 is outstanding. Also, it make a difference if the server is going to be mainly on-line and fetching files or just used for limited access within the office space. Throughput is a consideration.

lutiana
March 1st, 2014, 11:35 AM
For a small office? Why not just grab a real used server from ebay?

I got an HP ML150 G5 for like $200. Then I upgraded it to two Xeon processors (4core 3Ghz ones) for another $100, then maxed the RAM to 16Gb for another $100, threw in some 1Tb drives and had an enterprise level server for the small office I was working for. Plenty powerful enough to run a few VMs on it (one is SBS 2011, the other is a linux VPN server). Much cheaper than building an i7 desktop for a server and quite a bit more reliable, and the best part is it only cost about $500 when all was said and done.

There are tons of pretty decent used servers on ebay that would work for any small business, and are priced very well.

Here's one (http://www.ebay.com/itm/450161-001-HP-PROLIANT-ML150-G5-E5205-NON-HOT-PLUG-160GB-SATA-SERVER-/251146240260?pt=COMP_EN_Servers&hash=item3a797b8104), IMO these are perfect servers for small offices, since they offer great speed and power yet are as quite as any desktop. The guys selling this are they same people I bought 2 from. with the second one they were able to customize it for me, I had them pull the HDD, and up the RAM to 16Gb, cost me an extra $50.

Stone
March 1st, 2014, 11:41 AM
The client is a doctor and the server will be running a database program where the database itself will grow to 1 TB in two or three years. The company that supplies the software mandates a 1+ TB drive and 16 GB ram with an i7. So the decision has already been made for me. Believe it or not, now that Online Health Records are the LAW, the government (HIPAA) also requires that the office server be physically banded(strapped) to the floor or a desk to deter 'casual' theft possibilities. I also have to 'rip out' the WI-FI and re-install the wired network that I installed some 15 years ago. :-)

Agent Orange
March 1st, 2014, 12:38 PM
If it was my client I certainly would not be installing someone's stuff from eBay. 500-800 is not unreasonable for a quality system. Grab a cup of coffee and go through the H/P refurb site. https://h41183.www4.hp.com/pps-offers.php

Stone
March 1st, 2014, 01:00 PM
Absolutely! The server's gonna be new.

Compgeke
March 1st, 2014, 04:25 PM
If you're up to throwing a few parts in to save money here's what I would do:

1.) Optiplex 9010. Has a Core i7 3770, 1 TB HDD, 8 gigs ram. Link: http://outlet.us.dell.com/ARBOnlineSales/Online/SecondaryInventorySearch.aspx?c=us&l=en&s=dfb&cs=28&puid=6505bcf7

2.) 16 GB ram upgrade. Add this along with the 8 it has already and end up with 24 gigs. Link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231608

2.5.) 8 gig ram upgrade rather than 16, saves a few bucks. Link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231643

3.) WD Red 2 TB HDD. Use this for the database and the 1 TB for the OS, that way you don't end up having the transfer the database onto a new drive quite as quickly. Link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA2W01AZ5009

Total with 24 gigs and 3 TB: $1032.
Total with 16 gigs and 3 TB: $970
Total with 24 gigs and 1 TB: $923
Total with 16 gigs and 1 TB: $860


Alternatively:
Optiplex XE2 here also fits your needs. Has a Core i7 4770S, 16 gigs ram, 1 TB drive. Wouldn't say the 4770S is worth the extra money over a 3770 honestly, especially when you can get the 3770 with the same ram and 2 TB more space for $20 more.

Link: http://outlet.us.dell.com/ARBOnlineSales/Online/SecondaryInventorySearch.aspx?c=us&l=en&s=dfb&cs=28&puid=9a617bd7

Stone
March 1st, 2014, 06:37 PM
Unfortunately the Dell links aren't cooperating tonight. I'll give them another try tomorrow.

lutiana
March 1st, 2014, 10:51 PM
If it was my client I certainly would not be installing someone's stuff from eBay. 500-800 is not unreasonable for a quality system. Grab a cup of coffee and go through the H/P refurb site. https://h41183.www4.hp.com/pps-offers.php

Refurbished server off of E-bay vs refurbished desktop from HP? I fail to see the difference (the servers I bought off E-bay were refurbished by the company selling them), I should have mentioned they came with a 1 year warranty. Worked out very well for my clients, and save them a bundle of money.

With a DB like that I'd highly recommend going RAID 10 with 2, 3 or even 4Tb drives. You'll need the performance of a Stripe, but since it's mission critical you'll also need the redundancy of the mirror. At the minimum I'd recommend a mirrored set of drives, a single drive would cause me to loose a ton of sleep in the situation you describe.

deathshadow
March 2nd, 2014, 03:00 AM
Unfortunately the Dell links aren't cooperating tonight. I'll give them another try tomorrow.

To my mind this right here is where you're going to spend more than you should... but then I don't do off the shelf computers unless it's something really low-end like a nettop, or something you can't DIY like a laptop. Off the shelf pre-built server? Overpriced crap... usually not even using SERVER parts.

Though you might want to clarify what you mean by "server" -- do you mean a fileserver? database server? LAN or WAN? What OS? Workstation doing double-duty or something that's going in a corner to be forgotten? Is it going into a rackmount or mega-tower drive bay?

I mean a simple LAN fileserver even a bottom end Atom is overkill... a database server is more about how many cores can you get and disk throughput system than it is clock speed...

If you're going for a simple LAMP for example, I'd not even be looking at a i7 as that's more about core count; I'd drop $400 or so on a 12 core AMD Abu Dhabi.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113304

or if the purse-strings are really tight, a 8 core one.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113316

Though even a bottom end Seoul:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113321

or E3-1220
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819117288

Might meet or exceed your needs.

More cores is good for a server which is why (despite what some people say) HT might gain you more in a 'large request' environment if you do go Intel. HT in a situation where you're serving lots and lots of requests might pretend to be double the cores, but real world it's more like 50% more... that's why these:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157458

Give you about the same performance as a 2.8ghz Pentium 4D. A lot of places are using Atom as servers because the performance is adequate while the power consumption is under control; cheap entry AND cheap operating cost since you're sucking a tenth the wattage on average.

Really though it depends on what you want it to actually be doing/running. It's easy to just throw the fastest latest at a problem, when that's often a waste of technology or worse, the wrong technology.

deathshadow
March 2nd, 2014, 03:08 AM
Oh, and rather than one high end i7, you might also want to consider multiple cheaper chips on a dual chip mobo. A couple cheap Seoul procs:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113321

in a reasonably priced ASUS server motherboard:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131670

Would give you some serious ass-kicking 12 core server power for about what an i7 era quad core Xeon build would run you.

Agent Orange
March 2nd, 2014, 09:24 AM
Refurbished server off of E-bay vs refurbished desktop from HP? I fail to see the difference (the servers I bought off E-bay were refurbished by the company selling them)

Well, there is a difference in my mind. Something that you trust though past experience as opposed to "Brand X". Then you went on to say that you modified the whole thing anyway to get it the way you wanted it. I am just guessing, but I'm assuming the OP's time is worth something. Not trying to pick a bone with you, just a different point of view.

krebizfan
March 2nd, 2014, 11:00 AM
If the installation was a bigger, I would contact both HP and Dell to see if they would cut the warranty price. 3 years with 4 HR response time will be expensive (basically doubling the cost of the base system) but if the doctor's office relies on the box it will be cheaper than not having a computer for those hours.

With a current system readily lasting 3 or 4 years, I would focus more on reliability than on the chance to shave off a few bucks.