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 Post subject: E3 Xeon Motherboard
PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 11:23 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 9:55 am
Posts: 18
Location: UK
My current linux home server is built around an atom board - I've reach the limit with this.

I am thinking seriously about an upgrade to using a E3-1220L with ECC. The only server minit itx motherboard I can find that I might be able to buy in the UK is the Intel S1200KPR Mini ITX. I would prefered a Mini-itx as I can build it into a small 1U rack and it will keep power usage down.

I have never built a 'true' server before could anyone help me and answer the following questions?

1) As there is no GPU on this xeon do server motherboards allow access to the bios setup via the serial port? Or do you always need to add a GPU card for configuration/watch the boot process?

2) Are there better server mini-itx boards available?

3) Has anyone seen any links to any home builds which might give an indications of idle power use of an Ivy Xeon and Mini-itx?

4) Do all xeons - due to power savings - idle at the same wattage? If so would it make sense to use a more powerfull chip to allow for future need (currently run a quite few web apps, mythbackend, mysql, other apps).

5) Haswell would it be worth waiting the refreshed Xeons - but if I do could I find a motherboard.

Any thoughts, really appreciated.


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 Post subject: Re: E3 Xeon Motherboard
PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 9:46 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 06, 2011 11:19 pm
Posts: 74
Location: North of the 49th parallel
1) I have both(S120KPR & E3-1220L), and I can confirm that the combination won't boot without a video card(presently the E3-1220L just sits in my parts box, curse you Intel); practically, for this board, you need a CPU with the GPU enabled.
2) There are some Supermicro mITX (Core i3-7) server boards, but around 700-1200($ or euro, depending on country).
3) Not Xeon, but it could be interesting: http://www.silentpcreview.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=65728.
4) No; there's difference between the dual- and quad-cores.
5) Present MB's won't be compatible with Haswell.


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 Post subject: Re: E3 Xeon Motherboard
PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 10:51 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 9:55 am
Posts: 18
Location: UK
Thank you ever so much Zolishoru - excellent feedback, appreciated.

I am going to have to have a slight rethink - I'll also look at the possibility of using a desktop board for a home server build (DQ77KB for example) - but I know there will be no ECC, no fast PCI exp, and as you mentioned i will need to use a xeon with a gpu to 'boot'.

Time to think (maybe wait for Haswell release, and see what mini-itx boards come to market).


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 Post subject: Re: E3 Xeon Motherboard
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 5:28 am 
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Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 2:34 pm
Posts: 31
Location: Denmark
If you do require ECC, then you could also look at S1200BTSR. It has a tiny gpu builtin (SM712 chip), only vga output. The board has no remote management though.

I'm currently experimenting with a DQ77KB and E3-1220LV2. It works perfectly, and can boot without a video card (just need to add a video card if anything "goes wrong"). ;-)

Excellent little board.

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 Post subject: Re: E3 Xeon Motherboard
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 9:59 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 9:55 am
Posts: 18
Location: UK
Wow wow and wow. The DQ77KB and E3-1220LV2 without a video card... one more WOW.

That's so exciting. Have you performed any watt readings, I'd so much like to know how this combination idles.

I was thinking of either about pairing with the E3-1265L v2 (45W with gpu). But if the E3-1220LV2 works and is powerfull enought (no idea how I calculate this) then this is wonderfull.

For any server ECC must be the prefered route, I did read this link http://communities.intel.com/thread/31007 which implied that because ECC is spec'd as not supported it doesn't mean it would not work! Interesting but until anyone can confirm this it is just chatter.

Any more observations on what you have built?


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 Post subject: Re: E3 Xeon Motherboard
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 10:19 am 
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Joined: Thu Jul 03, 2008 4:27 am
Posts: 1694
Location: Switzerland
It is true that ECC support information in specs isn't reliable. This can be shown by looking at how specs for some low-cost parts have changed over time for instance.
On the other hand, you shouldn't assume something that could work is going to work without solid evidence. Intel is known for hurting its customers for the sake of market segmentation. Their quasi-monopolistic position affords them the opportunity to do so. Unsupported pairings that work might be disabled by future BIOS updates too. Sometimes there's actually a sound technical reason for disabling some configurations. In any case, "unsupported" means you're on your own...

Intel's TDP ratings obviously do not apply to individual CPUs. Do NOT make a descision based on them.
The 1265Lv2 is VERY expensive for what you get. The non-L 1220v2 and 1225v2 look nice on paper. They don't consume as much power as their ratings imply and you can cut power consumption further by tweaking.

edit: server boards and desktop boards are not equivalent. If you don't need a server board, I'm not sure why you're looking at dual-core Xeons. The Pentium/Celeron dual-cores are much better value if you don't need server hardware.


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 Post subject: Re: E3 Xeon Motherboard
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 11:16 am 
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Joined: Wed Jul 12, 2006 10:29 am
Posts: 564
Location: de_DE
The Core i3-2XXX and Pentium G2XXX series support ECC and have integrated graphics.

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 Post subject: Re: E3 Xeon Motherboard
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 9:04 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 06, 2011 11:19 pm
Posts: 74
Location: North of the 49th parallel
boost wrote:
The Core i3-2XXX and Pentium G2XXX series support ECC and have integrated graphics.

Officially* only the G2XXX Pentiums. If in doubt, consult http://ark.intel.com/.
*Official support means full ECC(RAM+Caches); if ECC is enabled for the RAM(detectable by user), it doesn't means that is enabled for the caches.


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