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Quote:
Originally Posted by Louie26 /forum/post/16986181


hey all, could anyone recommend a motherboard and cpu for building a windows home server, any help would be much appreciated

I am in the process of building a WHS to replace my HP MediaSmartServer. Here is what I am using (obviously going the extra mile with the case and and sata hdd trays, but the other components can be used regardless)

http://dbone1026.blogspot.com/2009/0...d-diy-whs.html
 

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I'm glad this topic popped up. I was just putting together a list for a media server and was about to hunt down that other topic about making them. I'm planning it for an old Pentium chip, 3ghz. But I want onboard video since it will eliminate buying another component. Planned parts so far.


OS: Windows Home Server

Case: LIAN LI Lancool PC-K7B Black

CPU: Pentium 4 3ghz

Mobo: ???

CPU Cooler: Scythe SCMNJ-1000 80mm Sleeve "NINJA MINI"

RAM:2gb

Optical: BR?

HDD:

OS: 80gb 2.5

Storage: 5x 2tb (eventually)

Raid Controller: ?

PSU: ?


Fans:

Front:

2 - Scythe KAZE-JYUNI "SLIP STREAM" 120mm Case Fan - SY1225SL12L - 800rpm


Rear:

1 - Scythe KAZE-JYUNI "SLIP STREAM" 120mm Case Fan - SY1225SL12M - 1200rpm
 

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It depends on your needs for a server and what kind it is. I am going to assume file server since this is a HTPC forum...


If the server is not going to play anything, just send it to other computers to do the playing then a cheap CPU will do fine. AMD just released a very nice Sempron processor for $35 ($40 now cause of markup), and it cna even be unlocked into a dual core.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...=Sempron%20140


RAM you wont need a lot of either, 2GB will be fine if all you are using this for is a server:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820161030



Motherboard should be whatever works with your CPU. SO if you get that new AM3 sempron, this would be a good motherboard:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813128394

^^^^^^^

Built in video, low power, full support for the new CPU, cheap, small.





Do you need recommendations on hard drives and/or controller card?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
thanks for your replys, its just gonna be used as a server, using windows home server, its my first time building a server, so any advice on parts is much appreciated, i want to build it cheap as possible, and using low energy parts if possible being left 24/7, i currently dont have any parts yet
 

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I guess it would be a file server. I would store my ripped media and then connect to current HTPC via...Cat5? I guess? Then I would watch movie file through 7MC, SageTV and PDVD9.


I would record my OTA TV shows onto a 500gb laptop drive that would be inside the HTPC itself since I only keep them over the summer and dump them before the next season starts. 500gb should be enough for that.


Since I already have the Pentium chip I was looking at the Gigabyte board that is in my last HTPC build. I've never had any problem from it and I think it has the needed slot for the RAID controller card. It has a PCI-E x1 and a x16 slot.
 

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You guys might want to remember that you don't have to break the bank to have a media server. I have one running on a socket 754 mb with a 2ghz Turion single core processor and 512 mb DDR400. I used an Intel GIGE PCI card for throughput to the network. I currently have 3 750gb WD Greens SATA connected directly to the MB. I can increase the number of drives using SATA expansion cards in the remaining PCI slots. OS is unRAID basic which will be upgraded when needed.


I only use it for DVD storage since I'm not a big music buff. I rip them in file format and playback using SageTV V6 (which also serves me well in the DVR arena).


I see a lot of people spend a mint on a server and mine cost me nothing more than $300 for the drives (last years prices). I already had all the other hardware. It also uses very little power since unRAID spins the drives down when not in use.


BT
 

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Well, here is my two cents. I have built 2 servers. I am thinking of combining my daughters desktop (she has a laptop and almost never uses the desktop anymore) and my media server into one computer that will be 85% server and 15% daughters gaming computer (probably more like 5% as she plays most games on her laptop).


My option was to use spare parts... but if I were going to build one from scratch, here is the way I would try to make it as energy efficient as possible as you end up running these 24/7.... usually.
  • Get a motherboard with atleast 4 sata, preferably 6.
  • Find a motherboard that allows you to lower the clock and cpu voltage. (cuts down heat and energy use)
  • Use a low voltage chip like the 45 watt amd (saves energy)
  • make sure all the vga and sound are onboard. (save energy)
  • 1 stick of ram (10% less performance - saves energy)
  • Well ventilated case with 1 120mm fan in front (saves energy, quieter, moves alot of air over drives)
  • lowest voltage power supply needed +80 watts(preferrably a quality one like seasonic or PC P&C - it protects your data and are usually more efficient, +80 in case you add drives later)

So as far as a motherboard, look at newegg. Do a search to eliminate down to an AM2+, 4-6 sata, onboard vga. From there go to the manufacturers website and look at the pdf manuals to see what the bios actually offers (dont go by features listed in reviews unless they correct a manufacturer misprint, reviews are good though as well). This will also give you a check to see what kind of support in terms of drivers the board has.


You might get the idea that a server needs to be a powerhouse like the WOPR. It really doesn't for your application. My 1.8 celeron with 512mb of ram stream blurays just fine.
 

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I would go with a fairly low power motherboard and CPU since as a server it will be on most of the time.


This is probably not the most current motherboard power consumption tests, but it is one I am familiar with http://www.anandtech.com/showdoc.aspx?i=3417&p=14 it can give you an idea of what to target for power consumption.


Naturally you want several SATA connections to allow for storage upgrades & eSATA is a good idea as well.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Louie26 /forum/post/16990948


hi all thanks ever so much for your replys and help, just having a quick look, would this motherboard be any good to use for my server http://www.ebuyer.com/product/145300 thanks again for your help and this cpu http://www.ebuyer.com/product/134749

At a glance, the board looks ok. At think point, you may want to consider a dual core. A low power dual core. Not really necessary though.


looks like it would work just fine though.
 

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I just used renethx's recommended setup from the HTPC thread. Good quality board low power chip with 6 sata ports, motherboard, cpu, and ram for less than $200. I use $15 4 port sata expansion cards from monoprice when I ran out of onboard ports. My system uses unraid which I recommend for a little extra security, but I know the cards work with WHS.


What everyone is saying about using an old system is right, I just built a WHS system for my parents using an athalon 3600 single core with 512mb's of ram and it runs fine. If your going build new don't try to break the bank. Those sata expansion cards I use (recommended by renethx) don't benchmark worth a crap, but they've worked great streaming blu-ray rips over my network. I would recommend high quality parts rather than high-end. You'll have a reliable system that will last a long time.


Good Luck.
 

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My system was going to built around the spare CPU that I have on hand from an old system. It's a Intel Pentium Celeron(R) 3 GHz. I don't know if it's low powered or not but this was going to be what everything was going to be built around.


It's good to know that I don't have to buy top of the line stuff for this project. But I know the bulk of the price will be getting the 2tb drives. I want 5 total but I won't buy them all at once of course.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackal55 /forum/post/16992404


My system was going to built around the spare CPU that I have on hand from an old system. It's a Intel Pentium Celeron(R) 3 GHz. I don't know if it's low powered or not but this was going to be what everything was going to be built around.


It's good to know that I don't have to buy top of the line stuff for this project. But I know the bulk of the price will be getting the 2tb drives. I want 5 total but I won't buy them all at once of course.

Yeah, you definitely don't have to spend a lot. My HP MediaSmart Server has a single core CPU and has handled streaming Blu Rays with little issue. For my DIY WHS build I am spending a little more on the case/storage, but that is purely because I wanted something more high end, it is definitly not needed to get a server up and running
 

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File servers are much different than media streamers. Due to demigrator activity you can get stutter from many mobo's, best to do more homework. For a file server, you can just use an atom 330. A lot more can go into a streamer.

There are folks with very good mobo's and quad cpu's and 4 gb ram that still experience stutter when demigrator goes on a pass.

Best to know what you intend.


Ben
 

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Would a sempron be enough to power a hardware RAID card and WHS? I've already bought the Norco 4220 and the HighPoint 4320 RAID card, but am still debating on what mobo/cpu combo to get. The sempron would be nice since it's very low power, but I don't know if it's enough to power to handle everything. The box will be strictly used to backup my workstations and stream movies.
 
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