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General Chat Thread, I need a stupid / Geek project in General; Im about to replace the school servers, leaving me with 4 lots of dual quad core xeons with 32GB each ...
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    robjduk's Avatar
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    I need a stupid / Geek project

    Im about to replace the school servers, leaving me with 4 lots of dual quad core xeons with 32GB each so my challenge / question is this...

    What stupidly nerdy project could I use them for? There must be something stupid I can put them to do?

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    I'll take one for my school - that's pretty sweet hardware to decommission.

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    What about an RDS farm?

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    Bitcoin mining?

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    Litecoin would be better - still CPU mining sucks. Be better off saving the world - try BOINC \ Rosetta@Home assuming the electric bill isn't an issue. Failing that I'm sure we could find a few people to come take them off your hands

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    We recently moved to a virtual server solution. Our Head of Music wants to use some of the old servers to build his own mini Music network.

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    Set up a Terminal Server system to run an exam environment. We have as many as 15 students at a time who are entitled to use keyboards during exams. This hits the sweet spot in terms of controlled conditions and ease of maintenance. Also useful for language exams that have sound files. each child can play the sound track for themselves. We use dedicated thin clients but you could use any PC/laptop to connect.

    Alternatively, run a computer games club with a dedicated server!

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    robjduk's Avatar
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    those sound like nice solutions but I was really thinking something only a real nerd could love like cluster them and turn it into a chess playing machine.
    Funny enough I do run BIONIC across the school already for the world community grid to use an idle processor on the school's desktop machines (quite high in the rankings now) and could do that for a while to boost our score. Bitcoin mining just does nothing on CPU's and doubt I could slip through ATI cards into my budget.
    I am trying to avoid using them for school work again as I don't intend to keep the warranty's going on them so cant have staff get used to the resource.

    If anyone knows of such a chess program I can run or something equally as nerdy, please shout.

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    Quote Originally Posted by robjduk View Post
    Im about to replace the school servers, leaving me with 4 lots of dual quad core xeons with 32GB each
    Set up your own cloud. The hardware sounds perfect - how much disk capcity does each one have? If you're worried about using out-of-warrenty hardware for a service that people use, then make sure you set it up in a way that gives redundancy between servers. I'd probably go for a Ceph cluster for storage, and I have my own OpenStack cloud for processing, although I've not actually managed to do anything very interesting with it yet. Rather than chess, I'd go for a newer "big data" type of challenge - mining and processing the wodges of data that your school roduces every day. I'd love some more time to look at image processing in a school context - how to process, manage and extract useful information from all the photos that pour on to our servers every day.

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