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Hardware Thread, New server thoughts in Technical; Looks like we have money for a new server this year so I wanted your thoughts on the server spec. ...
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    Jobos's Avatar
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    New server thoughts

    Looks like we have money for a new server this year so I wanted your thoughts on the server spec. Last year my other primary school replaced their only server with a Dell 2900 running Server 2003 and it runs quite nicely.


    Dell PowerEdge 2900
    2 X Intel E5410 2.33GHz
    4GB memory
    5 X 146GB SAS HDD + 1 X 146GB hot spare in raid 5 config
    48xCDRW/DVD
    3.5 FDD
    Redundant PSU
    PERC 6/i controller


    I was thinking of a similar server this time, only fitting it with more memory and running server 2008. It would be a second DC and would run: File sharing, Exchange 2008, DHCP, SIMS/FMS and SQL.

    Is Server 2008 more resource hungry like Vista is? And what should I increase the memory to?

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    matt40k's Avatar
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    Noooooooooooooo

    Don't run SIMS and Exchange on the same box!!! If you do, make sure you have Virtual servers running.

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    mb2k01's Avatar
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    I'd agree with Matt40k - don't go putting SIMS and Exchange together.
    The spec looks ok for a SIMS server... but i'm not sure about the badge on the front of it!

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    ranj's Avatar
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    From my experience server 2008 is far less resource hungry than Vista.

    Obviouslyy your notice a slower performance than if you used 2003 but if you have at least 4gb in the server you should be fine.

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    I dont think Sims can run on server 2008 can it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jobos View Post

    Is Server 2008 more resource hungry like Vista is? And what should I increase the memory to?

    Yes it's the case

    Win 2003 Server:
    Windows Server 2003 System Requirements

    Win 2008 Server
    Windows Server 2008 System Requirements

    Regarding the question "...what should I increase the memory to?" It will depend how much data you want to process and store. 4GB might not be enough for heavy load.

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    matt40k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FN-GM View Post
    I dont think Sims can run on server 2008 can it?
    Yes, Capita support it from 1st Jan '09


    Remember if you go over 4GB you want to look at 64BIT, SIMS works on 64bit hardware, BUT NOVA-T etc won't! So don't expect to do any timetabling or such.

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jobos View Post
    Is Server 2008 more resource hungry like Vista is? And what should I increase the memory to?
    As others have pointed out already, run virtual servers to stop applications interfering with each other. We have a couple of machines licensed for Windows Server 2008 Enterprise Edition, which allows you up to four VMs per machine at something like 300 at educational pricing, which isn't bad. Server 2008 seems to run just fine as a VM with 1GB of RAM assigned - we have three Server 2008 VMs running on one machine, DC, printer server and application server, and all seem fine. It's definatly worth putting at least 8GB of RAM in that machine, though, if not 16GB. You might also want to put another network card or two in (fancy ones are 30 each) just to give you some more bandwidth.

    --
    David Hicks

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by matt40k View Post
    Yes, Capita support it from 1st Jan '09


    Remember if you go over 4GB you want to look at 64BIT, SIMS works on 64bit hardware, BUT NOVA-T etc won't! So don't expect to do any timetabling or such.
    If you get Enterprise 32bit i think you can go over 4gb can you? i might be wrong on that though.

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    tmcd35's Avatar
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    I thought the 4Gb limit was due to 32bit addressing not an artificial limit imposed by M$ on some versions of their OS. AFAIK any 32bit version of Windows can use more than 4Gb RAM by using paging - PAE. Only 4Gb of RAM can actually be addressed/accessed at any given moment but PAE allows windows to effectively switch between multiple 4gb banks of memory.

    64bit allows >4Gb of continous (non-paged) RAM to be used.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FN-GM View Post
    If you get Enterprise 32bit i think you can go over 4gb can you? i might be wrong on that though.
    32bit can only see 3.somthing of memory

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    Quote Originally Posted by uk101man View Post
    32bit can only see 3.somthing of memory
    Not quite - 32bit allows for up to 4Gb of available memory addresses. But - just about any peripheral, PCI Cards, NICs, Graphics Cards, etc - use some of the memory addresses in the 4Gb range making them in turn unavailable for use by the system memory. Probrably the biggest item that effects how much of the 4Gb your system can see/use is the graphics card. AFAIK the more graphics RAM you have the less of the 4Gb system RAM is actually available.

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    The 2900 is being replaced by the T610, which is now available. Bit of a beast with the new Xeons in it, but well worth it especially if you go down the virtualisation route.

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    Jay
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    Floppy

    3.5 FDD

    Not seen one of these specced on a server in some time.

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    matt40k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tmcd35 View Post
    Not quite - 32bit allows for up to 4Gb of available memory addresses. But - just about any peripheral, PCI Cards, NICs, Graphics Cards, etc - use some of the memory addresses in the 4Gb range making them in turn unavailable for use by the system memory. Probrably the biggest item that effects how much of the 4Gb your system can see/use is the graphics card. AFAIK the more graphics RAM you have the less of the 4Gb system RAM is actually available.
    Yes enterprise can address more RAM... but you'll still hitting the 32bit barrer. I think it's just a cope out. It still has trouble giving out more then 2gb ram per process. If your buying new, spec for 64bit but rememeber to take into account the fact some things don't work. IE you know that if SIMS Support or such remotes in, they won't be able to run the old modules like Nova-T. Basically don't go thin client for SIMS.

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