Home server: silent and low power consumption system

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rado3105
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Home server: silent and low power consumption system

Post by rado3105 » Fri Nov 14, 2008 12:27 am

Hi I am looking for motherboard and CPU, motherboard without GPU for home server. My main goal is to have low power consumption/cheap/silent. Also it could be great to have good support under linux(but it wouldnt be problem).

that Linux guy
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Post by that Linux guy » Fri Nov 14, 2008 2:13 am

I would look towards one of the MiniITX boards featuring Intel's Atom CPU. The Atom 230 and 330 models run at 1.6GHz, in single core and dual core fashion, respectively. I'm hoping to build one for a small general server myself. The boards support a maximum of 2Gb DDR2 RAM, a PCI slot, 2 or 4 SATA-II connectors, an IDE connector...

The only crappything about them is the northbridge cooler. The CPU is so low-power, it has a very basic aluminum heatsink (seriously, I've seen RAM with better cooling). But the chipset isn't as low power profile as the CPU. It's a standard Intel 945G chipset and it requires a fan. It too has a very basic aluminum heatsink, but it comes with a 40mmX10mm fan, which is said to be annoying. Several aftermarket chipset coolers will suffice. My personal pick would be Microcool's Northpole Whisper XE (just my choice).

What type of server are you looking for specifically? Simply for the lack of expansion, I wouldn't really recommend this small board if you're looking to make a small Data center out of a single machine. But for something basic like DNS, DHCP, SMTP, HTTP, FTP, SSH, or firewall duties, this is a pretty nice board.
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QuietOC
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Post by QuietOC » Fri Nov 14, 2008 5:26 am

that Linux guy wrote:I would look towards one of the MiniITX boards featuring Intel's Atom CPU. The Atom 230 and 330 models run at 1.6GHz, in single core and dual core fashion, respectively. I'm hoping to build one for a small general server myself. The boards support a maximum of 2Gb DDR2 RAM, a PCI slot, 2 or 4 SATA-II connectors, an IDE connector...
Any AMD K8 with a low power chipset can use less energy than those Atoms with the ancient 945GC/ICH7 chipset.

$23 Sempron LE-1150 + $40 Motherboard (Geforce 61x0/70x0 or 690G/7x0G)

Plus you get either 8, 16, or even 32GB of memory support.

ilovejedd
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Post by ilovejedd » Fri Nov 14, 2008 6:55 am

rado3105 wrote:Hi I am looking for motherboard and CPU, motherboard without GPU for home server. My main goal is to have low power consumption/cheap/silent. Also it could be great to have good support under linux(but it wouldnt be problem).
Actually, you want something with onboard graphics for a server. It's kinda hard to troubleshoot if you don't have any type of video out. You can run it headless, but for initial configuration, it's easier if you have a display.
that Linux guy wrote:I would look towards one of the MiniITX boards featuring Intel's Atom CPU. The Atom 230 and 330 models run at 1.6GHz, in single core and dual core fashion, respectively. I'm hoping to build one for a small general server myself. The boards support a maximum of 2Gb DDR2 RAM, a PCI slot, 2 or 4 SATA-II connectors, an IDE connector...
Just a warning, I recently built a MiniITX system using the Intel D945GCLF2 (Atom 330) board. I couldn't run Kubuntu since the DVD drive I got was screwy and doesn't want to close. I ran the newest version of Damn Small Linux I found (4.4.8?) and the ethernet controller (Realtek RTL8111C) wasn't supported.
that Linux guy wrote:What type of server are you looking for specifically? Simply for the lack of expansion, I wouldn't really recommend this small board if you're looking to make a small Data center out of a single machine. But for something basic like DNS, DHCP, SMTP, HTTP, FTP, SSH, or firewall duties, this is a pretty nice board.
Yep, for a file server, you're better off getting at least a MicroATX board. MiniITX is great if you want a really really small form factor and don't have much need for performance or expandability.

that Linux guy
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Post by that Linux guy » Fri Nov 14, 2008 12:54 pm

ilovejedd wrote:
that Linux guy wrote:I would look towards one of the MiniITX boards featuring Intel's Atom CPU. The Atom 230 and 330 models run at 1.6GHz, in single core and dual core fashion, respectively. I'm hoping to build one for a small general server myself. The boards support a maximum of 2Gb DDR2 RAM, a PCI slot, 2 or 4 SATA-II connectors, an IDE connector...
Just a warning, I recently built a MiniITX system using the Intel D945GCLF2 (Atom 330) board. I couldn't run Kubuntu since the DVD drive I got was screwy and doesn't want to close. I ran the newest version of Damn Small Linux I found (4.4.8?) and the ethernet controller (Realtek RTL8111C) wasn't supported.
that Linux guy wrote:What type of server are you looking for specifically? Simply for the lack of expansion, I wouldn't really recommend this small board if you're looking to make a small Data center out of a single machine. But for something basic like DNS, DHCP, SMTP, HTTP, FTP, SSH, or firewall duties, this is a pretty nice board.
Yep, for a file server, you're better off getting at least a MicroATX board. MiniITX is great if you want a really really small form factor and don't have much need for performance or expandability.
The only reason I recommended the Atom board/CPU combo was because I was under the impression they were a new revolution in low-power computing, without such a compromise in performance like with VIA C7 and C3 offerings. That and I had read a blog post a or a web article that was specifically about running Ubuntu on the Atom, which I can't seem to find right now :(

I'm still looking to replace my PII rig with a server, so I'll take your advice. I guess if you can get MATX rigs running so low power, Intel's Atom boards aren't necessary.
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ilovejedd
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Post by ilovejedd » Fri Nov 14, 2008 3:45 pm

that Linux guy wrote:The only reason I recommended the Atom board/CPU combo was because I was under the impression they were a new revolution in low-power computing, without such a compromise in performance like with VIA C7 and C3 offerings. That and I had read a blog post a or a web article that was specifically about running Ubuntu on the Atom, which I can't seem to find right now :(

I'm still looking to replace my PII rig with a server, so I'll take your advice. I guess if you can get MATX rigs running so low power, Intel's Atom boards aren't necessary.
Depending on your individual needs, the Intel D945GCLF2 might still be an option. Recall, I mentioned my DVD drive wasn't working so I needed something I can boot off of USB to test. While the board is not supported in DSL, it could very well be supported in Ubuntu.

Power consumption values:
Boot: 30W
Idle: 28W
Load: not tested :(

APEX MW-100 w/60W DC-DC
Intel D945GCLF2
Kingston 2GB DDR2 800 KVR800D2N5/2G
Seagate Momentus 5400.4 250GB
Samsung Slim DVD Burner

For a file server, though, I wouldn't recommend it as it only has 2 SATA ports. Then again, my file server is a 12TB unRAID build (still expandable). Your needs might vary and you could easily be served by a single 1.5TB drive. :)

rado3105
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RE

Post by rado3105 » Sat Nov 15, 2008 1:15 am

I had atom based server, but it is now in servis(probably northbridge has gone). I was thinking of some k8 based board. I want to run FTP, SAMBA, NTS, QOS, IPTABLES, MYSQL, DNS server there. I dont know which motherboard for AMD has best power consumption(I was thinking of 780G, but it has a lot of features I dont need). I want to run there gentoo and I think that system without graphic card has less power consumption like with.

that Linux guy
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Post by that Linux guy » Sat Nov 15, 2008 2:16 am

I'm no AMD guy, but I've heard great things about the 780G boards and AthlonX2 4850e CPU. I was looking into an HTPC in a couple other forums and that's what was recommended the most.
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QuietOC
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Re: RE

Post by QuietOC » Sat Nov 15, 2008 5:36 am

rado3105 wrote:I dont know which motherboard for AMD has best power consumption(I was thinking of 780G, but it has a lot of features I dont need).
I don't think anyone knows. Really a barebone system designed to be low-power should be the lowest power consumption. The old S754 ASUS Pundit P2-AE2 was very efficient. Motherboard VRM design, memory voltage settings, and extra features have a big impact. Look for boards with 3 phase VRM design, or the ability to shut off phases. The people with the 20W AMD systems seem to mainly have the single chip 90nm Geforce 7050 chipset. The older Geforce 61x0 was also a 90nm single chip chipset. The AMD 690/740/780G northbridges idle at ~1W, but they require ~5W southbridges (SB600/SB700).

Also you need a special power supply to have an efficient 20W-30W system. Even 80+ power supplies can get down to only 50% efficient at these low loads.

Check lowpowercomputing's posts about his Abit AN-M2 + Sempron LE-1150 800 MHz @ 0.672V.

A "G2" stepping Sempron LE-1250 should be even more efficient.

croddie
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Post by croddie » Sat Nov 15, 2008 8:24 am

QuietOC wrote:Any AMD K8 with a low power chipset can use less energy than those Atoms with the ancient 945GC/ICH7 chipset.
But maybe if you turn off the integrated graphics, chipset power consumption will go down? Don't know if that is possible.

QuietOC
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Post by QuietOC » Sat Nov 15, 2008 11:21 am

croddie wrote:But maybe if you turn off the integrated graphics, chipset power consumption will go down? Don't know if that is possible.
No, they seem to use power even when disabled (i.e. a P35 which is the same silicon as a G33 uses the same amount of power--and you'll never be able to use the IGP circuits in the P35.)

It is actually pretty complicated to turn off current to unused circuits. Intel has developed a method to do it with unused processor cores in the Core i7, but that is new technology as far as PCs.

rado3105
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re

Post by rado3105 » Tue Nov 25, 2008 2:42 am

I am thinking of any of gigabyte 740G motherboard, but I dont know, which have VRM:
GIGABYTE MA74GM-S2
GIGABYTE MA74GM-S2H

Propably It will be better to be there ATI graphic card, they now have much better support under linux. And I want to run there linux.
Can you help which have that VRM, or can you help me to find other better?

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