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Old 02-19-2010, 10:56 PM   #161
etnietering
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

OK well to resurrect this thread - today for free I got a 3U rackmount server case with a 300W Antec PSU in it. The PSU had (of course) bulging and leaking Fuhjyyyyyyyyyyus in it, and since recapping it I've been searching for some hardware to put into it. I want to turn it into a NAS box or something. So here's my dilemma: I have 2 choices of what to put into it.
Option 1: This: http://cgi.ebay.com/Tyan-S1832DF-Dua...item1c0fb3816c
Option 2: My old P4 board - P4 2.0A, 768MB of PC133.

For either of them, I'm going to get a gigabit ethernet card, and a 4 port SATA RAID controller with a couple large drives to stick to it. Either way, a PCI bus is a PCI bus, so that's fine. I've read that 2 P3s beat out a P4 in terms of responsiveness and multithreading. For something like this, you want responsiveness, because the CPU shouldn't even be involved with bulk transfers over the PCI bus. What do you guys think? The dual p3 board is 40 dollars, and the p4 board is free. However, I could get the p3 board this week, and I wouldn't be able to get the p4 board for a few weeks. Another consideration - the power supply is older and heavy on the 5v/3.3v (30A each ish) and only 15A on the 12v, so a 5v based p3 board would make the power supply happier. They'd also use less overall power (2 x 20W vs 50W). I'm probably going to find some crappy old PATA drive to run FreeNAS from, and then use the big drives for storage.

I'm open to any and all suggestions Thanks!
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Old 02-19-2010, 11:48 PM   #162
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

screw the slot 1 p3, you can find nicer for cheaper.

also screw the p4, sdram p4 sucks imho.

keep looking: i'd say one of the following:

p4 478 northwood w/ddr
Athlon xp 462 w/ ddr

for more fun:

p4 775 prescott/cedar mill w/ ddr/ddr2 (i have a supermicro pdsge w/ 1.5gb ram and a prescott 630 for my main rig)

athlon64 x2 939- have one too, but out of commission (until i get the right solvent and the weather gets warmer in a month.

keep the antec as a spare, even rd the p3 collector is now ditching most of his p3 junk when i move. instead:

check out hypermicro.com for a better psu. they still have the famos acbel 550 for $20! they also have some nice 400w deltas (cheaply priced) with the 4 pin 12v instead of the acbel's 8pin.

the reason i say up the ante on the specs is so you have room in the future. the 775 prescott i use does great for a linux gaming box, for FreeNAS it might be overkill, but a small investment now could mean no expensive upgrade needed down the road (this is a lesson i have learned and hence why p3 is being phased out of my collection). not to mention future part availability.
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Old 02-19-2010, 11:49 PM   #163
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

etnietering: A NAS is pretty much only going to be doing one thing so I doubt 2 X P3 750 is going to beat out a P4 2.0. Maybe if you had tons of clients and disks but still probably not. Also, it's not just data over the PCI bus, the CPU has to read all the data and then format it for the network (SMB/NFS/etc).

Second, assuming your P4 is an Intel chipset then the southbridge is not going to be sharing the PCI bus like the the BX board will. Things like USB and internal hard drives will not load the PCI bus. This is a huge win for the P4 if you are going to use those significantly with a gig nic.

Third, what kind of "4 port SATA RAID" controller? Most of them are crap and very slow. If you want to RAID with them then it is much better to use them as a dumb HD controller with some kind of good software RAID like ZFS or GEOM in FreeBSD or MDADM in Linux. Most of them can use SSE2 to help out so the P4 again is better.

I wouldn't worry too much about only having 15A on the +12 unless you are going to have tons of disks.
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Old 02-20-2010, 01:00 AM   #164
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

It doesn't need to be that powerful - it's just firing data over the network, so no need for high end P4s or anything. I already have a dual Xeon box and a Core i7 as my main rig. This is just supposed to be cheap, simple, cheap, functional, and cheap. The power supply seemed surprisingly decent - it has bigger output rectifiers than the 400W smartpowers I'm also working on. And, it was custom made for this case (exact numbers of molex connectors, extra long ATX12V connector). I do have a Northwood class Celeron (2.8GHz), and half a gig of DDR, but I'd need a motherboard for that.

The P4 board I have back home doesn't have any SATA (it's from 2003), so it too would need a SATA card. The card I would get is a cheapie, based on the Silicon Image 3114 chip. You're right that its RAID capabilities probably suck. Since FreeNAS is FreeBSD, ZFS with RAID-Z would be a great option. There would only be 5 disks max (a startup disk and then 4 storage disks) so the 15A limit hopefully wouldn't be a problem. I can always beef up the 12v rectifier just to be sure. Anyway, there's no SATA ports onboard, so all the data would have to go through the PCI bus as opposed to being built into the southbridge.

So it sounds like a P4 would be a better bet. Should I go with my 2.0 P4 and the stuff I already have? Or would it be worth it to spend < $50 for a DDR board compatible with my 2.8 Celeron? It'd give me 40% more cycles, but only 1/4 the cache. Is having more cache that important if you're just shuffling data around? It's going to cost me an arm and a leg for the drives, so I'd rather not spend more than I have to on other components. Thanks for the advice!
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Old 02-20-2010, 01:14 AM   #165
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

keep your eyes open... costs of my main rig:

case- from a 99 buck goodwill special from ages ago

cpu, cooler, mobo (needed fixed, bent pins), rear pwm fan, dvd drive, dvd buner- FREE! (its all about knowing the right people, put a thread in wanting to buy and specify the specs you want and the max price you need... and maybe you will get offers.)

psu- $26

hd, $40 (had it for ages, 25ogb SATA)

2 ball bearing fans (vantec stealth, from hypermico)- $3 per fan, i bought 2

ram- 512mb free, 1gb $15 (from purdue university's surplus/scrap, gx280 pulled)

as for the mobo, dump willimette and celeron (p4). they both are junk. for the tyan, that looks overpriced. there is no way in heck i'd pay that much for it. for what its worth, i got a nice gateway select kt733 (slot A, caps are tant. only, no lytics) with an ide card and room for 3 hard drives. the psu is a newton power 200w, underpowered/proprietary, but i might put the board in another case.
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Old 02-20-2010, 05:35 AM   #166
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Quote:
Originally Posted by Player2
I snagged a Sony 24" CRT (2006) from the curb on trash day a couple days ago. Just needs a new flyback and a little bit of Magic Eraser to clean it up.
Too bad you didn't score this about a year ago. I had one sitting here with a bad CRT, but otherwise worked. It went to the scrappers.
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Old 02-20-2010, 09:17 AM   #167
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

etnietering: I wouldn't spend money on anything that doesn't at least have a couple of SATA ports on the southbridge so you can take some load off the PCI bus. Or get something with an onboard PCIe gig NIC. The SIL 3114 is fine if you use it as a dumb HD controler, but its RAID performance is horrible.

As for FreeBSD/FreeNAS, for anything you have been talking about you would be better off using GEOM instead of ZFS. ZFS is awesome, but to work properly it needs two things: Lots of RAM (2 gig min) and 64 bit. Yes it can "run" with less but if you run out of RAM it crashes hard. With an old P4 and 512M - 1G of RAM GEOM is going to be more reliable.

You might want to look at an Atom board just because they are cheap and include the CPU (often 64 bit) and often a gig NIC. Stick your SIL 3114 card in the PCI slot and you are good to go.
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Old 02-20-2010, 12:22 PM   #168
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

You can also get a cheap AMD dual core. Its 64 bit and some of the boards come with GB nics.
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Old 02-20-2010, 02:32 PM   #169
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

OK thanks guys, I think I'll go with the free stuff I have at home, a SiL3114 SATA controller, and FreeNAS + GEOM (I'd never heard of GEOM before, thanks), and a PCI 10/100/1000 card. It would be nice to have something faster, but I don't think it would be worth the expense. Plus, I like to be able to reuse old things of my own. Here's the board I have http://www.kpsurplus.com/products/view/25034 - minus the bad caps, of course. Interesting thing - it was cheaper 6 years ago when I got it new than now, used, with barfing capacitors. I also have a CF -> IDE adapter, so I can run FreeNAS off of a CF card.

The case came with 3 nice SUNON fans that really haul air around, so I shouldn't have to worry about cooling. When I ran that motherboard, I could load it all day and all night and the CPU never got above 40C. They also blow right over the hard drive bays, to keep the hard drives cool.

Thanks again!
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Old 02-20-2010, 05:11 PM   #170
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Five
freaking
dollars!




Also came with the little jacket thing as well as a new set of probes and oddly enough, the owners manual for a different model Tektronix scope.

I also picked up a weird rackmount CRT monitor that was made by a nonexist brand called Chromatics and came out of a nuclear sub. It's got a fixed resolution of 1280x1024 but hey, it was free.
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Old 02-20-2010, 05:40 PM   #171
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

wow
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Old 02-20-2010, 08:45 PM   #172
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Three years ago I scored an HP laserjet 1300 at a yard sale for $25- owner said she was 'tired of falling over it in the garage'. Brand new, in, box, factory-sealed, not hot! Still have factory toner cartridge with almost 3000 pages and not showing signs of getting low on toner. I was going to spend $50 on exit roller rebuilt kit for an old Apple (HP LJ4 family) imagewriter 630 that was given to me. The apple went away to the local solid waste authority for recycling. The 1300 sits on my network w/ a hawking print server cause the 1300 was parallel/usb. Cheaper to run than my epson sux-7800
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Old 02-21-2010, 12:30 PM   #173
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Guess my free box of working ASUS boards would be a good score:

1 P4S800D-X
1 P4P800
1 P4P800 Deluxe
4 P4P800E Deluxe
1 P4C800E Deluxe

I still havent done anything with them.
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Old 03-15-2010, 10:54 PM   #174
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

went to goodwill today, found a linksys wireless g router w/ speedbooster for $16. its a wrt54gs2 v1.

i linuxed it up with dd-wrt. works great!
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Old 03-16-2010, 01:50 AM   #175
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Got a Asus P4C800-E Deluxe (FINALLY!) with a Celery 2.4 for $20 and a APC SmartUPS 1250 while curb-shopping. :
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Old 03-16-2010, 05:02 AM   #176
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Got a few PSUs for free recently. 2 Hipro HP-D3057F3H 300W and an Antec SU-380 380W. All of them had bad caps but work fine after a re-cap. Been getting a few smartpowers as well, but I don't always re-cap them as they often make a very annoying high pitched whine.
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Old 03-16-2010, 11:26 AM   #177
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

and i thought this kind of stuff never happens to me but!:

Just in the nic of time too as one PC fails a free replacement comes about.

After the thunderstorm stops i took the trash out for work and noticed the neighbors who moved out (like usuall) leave all trash out in the road like its not thiers. I see 4 boxs, beat up, missing side panels. Someone obvisouly tried to "destroy" these 4 boxes but did a shitty job...

All 4 boxes had memory and hard drive removed, thats all that was missing (and a few opticals)

Two Dell Dimensions, two customs
P4 - 2.8 533
P4 - 2.0 400
P4 - 1.8 400
Cel - 1.8 or 2. 400

ALL MB are made by intel, One MB has obvious bad caps, the rest *looked* ok. All PSs test ok, I started testing the 2.8 rig and so far stable as can be.

the 2.8 rig is replacing me old AMD Athalon /ECS board that dubs as my security system that is in need of replacement. The genius who tried to destroy this system did so by bending the heatsink fins LOL, bent them back let it dry from sittin in rain and hell yea.
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Old 03-16-2010, 11:55 AM   #178
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

You are lucky man. Around here anymore when they do move and put some of their trash out its only empty wine and gin bottles, old needles, and gel caps that their drugs came in.
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Old 03-16-2010, 01:32 PM   #179
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Got a WRT54G v2.2 for nothing but hooking up a TV.
http://colt45.ws/misc/router.jpg
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Old 03-16-2010, 01:48 PM   #180
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toasty
Got a Asus P4C800-E Deluxe (FINALLY!) with a Celery 2.4 for $20 and a APC SmartUPS 1250 while curb-shopping. :
great score!
break out the polys!
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