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Hardware Thread, Buying a new server.... in Technical; ...
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    Koldov's Avatar
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    Buying a new server....

    Hi All,

    I have asked for a new server and been allocated about £2,500 out of next years budget, that sounded ok to me (but I have never bought a server) and as you can buy the basic tower for £400 ish, I thought I'd have enough to play with.

    Now having looked at the Dell website, I am concerned that might not be enough but I might just be overstating what I need (because I don't really know).

    I am looking at Server 2008 R2 (which Dell want over £600 for):

    Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, Standard Edition, English, Incl. 5 CALs, No Media [add £637.00 or £43/month-1].

    It will eventually take over the FMSO roles, be a DC and possibly be a test bed for me setting up SCCM or something similar. It doesn't 'need' to virtualise though.

    It will be a tower as we have nothing racked and our other server that will remain is a tower. That is 2008 (not R2) and holds print server, SIMS, staff and pupil data storage...

    So I need some advice on what to buy basically, not fantasy server time... Just a solid, reliable workhorse with hopefully some redundancy options, hot-swap drives/power supply if it's possible given the financial constraints...

    Kol.

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    ICTDirect_Dave's Avatar
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    You can have one of my Z800 workstations with a 3 year warranty for about a grand. In fact why not take two and then you've got redundancy.

    I've done about 20 of these for local primary servers lately

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    What size school is this for?

    Don't but the O/S license from Dell, get it from a supplier (we use Phoenix but there are others out there). Cost for Server 2012 is around £100 and if you wish you can use downgrade rights to Server 2008 r2 (Current installs are Server 2012 with a 2008r2 virtual machine).

    The Junior and Infant schools I work in have this:

    Intel Motherboard
    Dual Redundant 750W PSUs
    Integrated Dual Port 1Gb Ethernet
    Intel Xeon 6 Core Processor E5-2420 1.9Ghz 15MB 95W
    3 x Kingston 4GB 1600MHz DDR3 ECC CL9 Registered Single Rank 1.5V DIMM
    2x Toshiba 300Gb 6Gbps 10Krpm SAS 64MB Hard Drive 3.5 Inch 2.5 in 3.5 Caddy - for O/S mirrored drives
    4x Toshiba 600Gb 6Gbps 10Krpm SAS 64MB Hard Drive 3.5 Inch 2.5 in 3.5 Caddy - for Data in RAID5
    Samsung Black Sata 24 X DVD Writer
    Intel RAID RS2BL080 8 Port RAID Controller-6Gbps SAS/SATA 512Mb LSI2108
    In-Built Remote Mgt Module
    3 Years Onsite Next Business Day Warranty.

    Comes out at £3000 but depending on your situation can be customised, you could remove the redundant PSU, drop down the memory, reduce the hard drive capacity and have everything on the 4x600GB. The chassis is pedestal/rackmount combo.

    The quote was from Stone Group and is from 6 months ago, but you get the idea

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    I also have one infant school (30 ish computers) which has roughly the same spec as above but with 4 2TB SATA drives instead of SAS, brings the cost down remarkable to around 2000 I think

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    Koldov's Avatar
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    The school is quite small really, Junior level at the moment - about 400 students.

    At the moment it runs on quite old servers and that's fine for what we do, but there is no headroom to expand or try anything new or install space or CPU intensive applications like SCCM...

    Kol.

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    I'd also suggest going for Windows 2012r2 - if money and time are limited then why not spend the money on something with a good, long shelf life which will be supported for longer, which should hopefully save you time on just having to upgrade it later. As much as I detest the start menu on 2012/8, its easy enough to live with/work around on a server OS.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ICTDirect_Dave View Post
    You can have one of my Z800 workstations with a 3 year warranty for about a grand. In fact why not take two and then you've got redundancy.

    I've done about 20 of these for local primary servers lately
    Is that the beast you were showing me in Manchester? That was a seriously nice bit of kit, especially for the price. Knocks our Fujitsu servers into an overly sized hat!

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    ICTDirect_Dave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StevieM View Post
    Is that the beast you were showing me in Manchester? That was a seriously nice bit of kit, especially for the price. Knocks our Fujitsu servers into an overly sized hat!
    Yes mate, that's the one! Aint they just lovely

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    Quote Originally Posted by Koldov View Post
    I am looking at Server 2008 R2 (which Dell want over £600 for):

    Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, Standard Edition, English, Incl. 5 CALs, No Media [add £637.00 or £43/month-1].

    Kol.
    As has been said get your OS licence from an educational supplier that would be the cost of a server licence to a business.

    Ben

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    speckytecky's Avatar
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    Sent you a PM @ict_Dave

    Quote Originally Posted by ICTDirect_Dave View Post
    You can have one of my Z800 workstations with a 3 year warranty for about a grand. In fact why not take two and then you've got redundancy.

    I've done about 20 of these for local primary servers lately

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    I'd be more than happy to provide you with a quote. PM me and once I know requirements I'll get an engineer to work out some specs and look at current deals. £2500 should get you a decent enough bit of kit.

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    Fazza's Avatar
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    Check out ServerSource (based in Corby) they're Dell Refurbs with 3yr on-site warranty, we've had a few from them and they've been OK so far - only issue was a RAID battery failed and the next morning an engineer was on site and replaced it.

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    Koldov's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ICTDirect_Dave View Post
    You can have one of my Z800 workstations with a 3 year warranty for about a grand. In fact why not take two and then you've got redundancy.

    I've done about 20 of these for local primary servers lately
    Is that RTB warranty?

    Is it 'as is' or are there options?

    Can you PM me a quote with all the specs please?

    Kol.

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    Koldov's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Graham-Millgate View Post
    I'd be more than happy to provide you with a quote. PM me and once I know requirements I'll get an engineer to work out some specs and look at current deals. £2500 should get you a decent enough bit of kit.
    I'm not really sure of the requirements, actually that's what this thread was trying to find out!

    Feel free to PM some quotes for around that mark though if you can get near to the specs some of the others have posted.

    Kol.
    Last edited by Koldov; 12th March 2014 at 11:54 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Koldov View Post
    I'm not really sure of the reauirements, actually that's what this thread was trying to find out!
    Generally for our primaries (infants/juniors) we run about £1500 a Dell server. That's for 16-32GB RAM, middle of the road Xeon, and 4TB SATA raid5'd.

    Latest one we got for a school was as follows:

    Intel® Xeon® Processor E3-1270v2, 4C/8T, 3.50GHz, 8M Cache, 69W, Turbo
    32GB Memory (4x8GB) 1600Mhz Dual Ranked Low Volt UDIMM (speed is CPU dependent)
    (4) 1TB, SATA, 3.5-in, 7.2K RPM Hard Drive (Cabled)
    5Yr ProSupport and Next Business Day On-Site Service

    £1,532.27

    And then £120~ for Server 2012.

    I know it's not redundant/SAS etc as you mentioned, but generally we've found being close to our schools, and having the 5 Year next day warranty more useful And being infants/juniors personally I don't think they need the thousands and thousands spent.

    Steve



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