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Thread: Need eServer series advice

  1. #1
    SG Enthusiast
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    Need eServer series advice

    We are looking to upgrade our existing HP/NT 4.0 server to a new one. The proposal we have received is for an IBM eServer xseries 345. The specs are as follows:

    Xeon 2.8 dual procs
    2GB PC2100
    RAID 5E, 4x36.4GB 10K SCSI U320 hot-swap drives
    APC Smart UPS 1400VA with battery pack

    Windows 2003 SBS with 30 clients

    Plus the base features of the xseries 345.

    Anyone have any experience with these? Like them?

    We are not doing a lot with it, running our accounting software and probably using it for home directories and such. I believe the intent is to have the Exchange server running on it too.

    We are a small company, not a lot of "intensive" apps running on it.

    Total cost is about $10,500, plus labor to set it up (2-3 days @$65/hr).

  2. #2
    SG Enthusiast twwabw's Avatar
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    Well, I hope Windows 2003 SBS with 30 clients is a typo, because MS has not released SBS on the 2003 platform yet. If your vendor is telling you that's what it is- they're wrong

    In any case, I'm sure YOSC will chime in here too- he does lots of SBS installs and likes them. IMHO, here's what I think:

    - dual processors are great, if you really need them. If cost is no object, then go ahead. But, unless you're running SQL, or another processor intensive app., duallies are not necessary. Nice- but not required.

    - 2 gig of ram.... well- same as above. If you can afford it, go ahead. Exchange will fool you... you could put 10 gig of ram in it, and it would still use up all the available memory. Just the nature of the beast.

    - Ideally, in a high dollar server like this one, I would not use a single Raid5 disk array, especially if you're contemplating Exchange. I would consider a split backplane and multi channel Raid adapter, and split Exchange logs and databases off onto a Raid1 array. I would also keep the OS on its own Raid 1 mirror, and then use a raid 5 array for data and the rest. There's nothing wrong with Raid5, but Exchange is CONSTANTLY reading/writing to disk, and will perform better on Raid1.

    - I would also consider redundant power supply as well

    I've never used the IBM servers, so I can't speak one way or the other. i've always used Dell, Compaq, or HP servers. But IBM should be fine as long as you're comfortable with the vendor.
    Observe everything...focus on nothing..

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the reply.

    Well, I hope Windows 2003 SBS with 30 clients is a typo, because MS has not released SBS on the 2003 platform yet. If your vendor is telling you that's what it is- they're wrong
    Nope, not a typo. The quote said 2000 SBS, I asked why, they said it would come with no operating system, and 2003 SBS would be installed by them. I am assuming they know this may be a few weeks out and may be anticipating 2003 SBS being released by then.

    So far our experience with this company has been decent. I don't feel they have deliberately mislead us, but have been wrong on occasion.

  4. #4
    SG Enthusiast twwabw's Avatar
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    The quote said 2000 SBS, I asked why, they said it would come with no operating system, and 2003 SBS would be installed by them. I am assuming they know this may be a few weeks out and may be anticipating 2003 SBS being released by then
    That's good, because so far noone has any firm details on SBS 2003. They still haven't even committed to a release date, and no Betas are even out yet. It's code name is Bobcat. They haven't released details of any of the included apps yet either, but the rumor mill says that SQL may be dropped.

    Originally, it was slated for release in Summer 03, but then was moved to Q3, and now it is believed to not happen until Q4. I'm beginning to wonder if they're having some real issues with the "everything in one box" concept over server 2003. Hmmm... I guess we'll have to wait and see.

    I generally detest their (MS) "Software Assurance" rip-offs, but they've recently had a huge price drop to $99 for SBS2000 purchases. If you ever thought you were going to upgrade to it, and your new purchase occurs before the 2003 release, I would definitely consider it.
    Observe everything...focus on nothing..

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