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Wireless Networks Thread, What should I do with my new servers? in Technical; I have just receieved 2 of these: Dual CPU, Dual Core Xeon 3Ghz 8GB RAM 5x 147GB SAS 15k Drives, ...
  1. #1

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    What should I do with my new servers?

    I have just receieved 2 of these:

    Dual CPU, Dual Core Xeon 3Ghz
    8GB RAM
    5x 147GB SAS 15k Drives, giving about 530GB in RAID5 after OS partition
    Dual GB NIC

    I currently have these:

    Server 1:
    Dual Xeon 3.2Ghz, 2GB RAM, 500GB space approx (10k drives)
    Used for: Printers, Wireless, QCA Testing, Certsrv, Ghost Images, any web stuff

    Server 3:
    Dual Xeon 2.4Ghz, 1GB RAM, 254GB space (10k drives)
    Used for: DC, DNS, DHCP, ALL user storage + profiles

    Server 4:
    Dual Xeon 2.8Ghz, 1GB RAM, 470GB space approx (10k drives)
    Used for: DC, DNS, DHCP, Common area storage, Application server

    Proxy:
    Dual Xeon 3.2Ghz, 2GB RAM, 60GB storage, no RAID
    Used for: ISA Server


    Now my original intention was to make the new servers DC's, DNS, DHCP, and split the staff and student data between them, thereby freeing the older ones (3 and 4) for other uses.

    But now Im thinking maybe Im going to be putting too much pressure on the 2 new servers, so maybe keep the old 2 as DC's and use the new one as purely file servers. But then it seems a waste having 2 servers that powerful just acting as file servers

    Any ideas? Was my original idea best or am I still not spreading the loads out enough?

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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    From what you have just said, I'd send back the servers and buy a SAN or use them for virtualisation.

    Just MHO but I really don't think you need such powerful machines to just be doing Active Directory DNS/DHCP and filesharing stuff - its all pretty low processor/memory requirements, I wouldn't mind betting if you looked at the stats you'd find its low usage. We cope with 1800 users on dual 1.2Ghz with no major performance problems ( I would like to see them upgraded, only because the warranty has expired). However with the spec of your new machines you can run your DC's as virtual machines

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    plexer's Avatar
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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    So currently your worst machine has all the user areas?

    What happened to server 2?

    I'd certainly do what you were thinking first off.

    My 2 best machines are DC's, DHCP, DNS with users split between them.

    Ben

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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    Send them to us we could use them on permanent long term loan hehe

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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    Cybernerd - virtulisation is a very good idea, might well go down that route, cheers

    plexor - server 2 has long been retired, it was just a strange naming convention by the person i replaced, as with the choice to have all data on one server...

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    Jake's Avatar
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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    Make one a gaming server so that all Edugeek members can play, perhaps even a private WoW server

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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    I think donate one to Edugeek for the hosting of this site, then all we need to do is find co-hosting space thingy in a Data centre and we will be sorted

    Or send them to me as I love shiny things, and they will be very happy with my Dual Core Xeon HP Proliant which told me today it was lonely on its own as its one of a kind stuffed in a cabinet all on its own Lets all shed a tear for my poor lonely Proliant

    Also, again IMHO, those servers are seriously over speced for any of them jobs, you could run the whole of Microsofts email system off one of them. Do you have any big databases with lots of people using it such as a MIS? If so stuff that one one of them.

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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    Now this is why I question our suppliers technical department

    One of their engineers came out and 'personally' specced these out and indicated what we needed.
    I thought they were a little over the top myself, but I assumed he had more experiance and knew what we needed.

    Now theres 4/5 random people all saying the same thing, they're over specced, Im thinking they've just tried to get as much money out of us as they can

    Im not really complaining, they havent come out of our budget, we were given extra cash because of the fact the school has just been adding and adding without thinking about infrastructure. We're also getting a new fibre switch (which we really do need)

    And I suppose at least these mean they should last for a good 4/5 years

    But its just a bit annoying. I'd already got more sensible quotes from Dell but it seemed everyone was keener to stay with the current supplier

    Oh and yes, we do have an MIS system - SIMS, but thats running happily on a council supplied server. Id rather donate one than use it for that

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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    Somebody has probably earnt some serious commision here. 8GB of RAM! 5 SAS drives!

    I think your most sensible option might be to do something with VMWare Server... maybe stick a couple of web servers on there along with separating out your user data and building a MASSIVE media server.

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    john's Avatar
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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    Seriously someones being, IMHO, screwed for money there, and as your not paying I assume its not coming from your budget headers so someone is loosing out somewhere.

    Whoevers paying for them is being royally screwed and I would be shouting loud about it and ensure that The Bursar, Head etc know about it and either ask questions now about it and never use that firm again.

    (I am assuming that you are not a University with say 5000+ workstations and 15,000+ users on your system?)

    The most powerful server I own is a 2.8GHz Dual Core Xeon (singe Xeon not dual dual cores), 2GB ram, 8 SAS 73GB Hard Drives in a RAID5. That will do anything I throw at it, were thinking of using it for Fileserver (as it will take up to 16 disks in one box without expanding or using some storage array box), and then if and when budgets allow / they become cheaper, we will get another for running our Exchange system, which is something like 600 mailboxes.

    But we certainly are not considering anything of that spec for running anything else, if and when its the standard and around the normal price area that we pay £1500 - £2000 then yes fine, but I imagine those thing were probably around the £7K area each including disks?

    Its a lot of money which could have been spent getting 5 smaller servers and spreading the entire load out between them so it became a job per server, as well as getting other key items such as L3 gigabit switching, gigabit fibre switching etc which if you haven't got now is a wise investment.

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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    Well I used Dell for the last server, these were an exception, but dont worry it will be Dell or HP or just someone else from now on.
    We dont use the company for any client hardware anymore as it is

    We're nowhere near that big no as you rightly assume - 2000 users, 750 workstations

    They were around £5k each, might have been closer to £6k, ill check tomorrow

    The point about the 5 smaller servers is a good one, but unfortuantly, without a new server room we just havent got room. These 2 have got us jam packed. No room for another rack or anything without removing old stuff

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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    Is it worth pointing out that I will only be buying 2 servers in the next financial year ... and one will be specced pretty much the same as the above one. The other will be a lower spec but that is because it will only be running SIMS.

    Then again, I will be using Virtual Server on it to cover the small servers that are running various applications that *will not* run happily with other things. I am hoping to get 4 virtual systems running on it, as well as additional storage for some non-important stuff (RIS / WDS)

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    Re: What should I do with my new servers?

    I suspect in your server room you are like me and stuffed to the seams, the secret is getting smal 2U server rather than the big 5U stuff, so if your a HP fan, that means using DLs instead of MLs, they are just as good, A LITTLE BIT LOUDER (sorry am I shouting over the noise of them ) but when you think in a squashed server room / cabinet you can get 2 DLs in the space of 1 ML and when you factor in 2 MLs thats 10U into DLs that makes 5 servers VS 2, thats a lot of space saved and a lot more computing power in there.

    Anyway, whats done is done unless you sent them back under a mis-selling of goods type arguement.

    Virtualisation is a good idea from Ric if you are into running Virtual Server on them or if not, maybe nows the time to start, or if your server room is well stuffed you could always retire all your other servers and just use these two as they will do pritty much everything you do on the other boxes by themselves.

    Otherwise stick a decent PCI-express VGA card in them and stuff HL2, WoW, BF2, Flight Sim X, CS:S, The Ship etc on it and you will have a flipping awsome gaming rig

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