Low powered computer thread

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#81
Indeed. I believe that is the intent of the testing. The PSU I have on it now is almost certainly the correct unit, but how much loss might you risk by getting the absolute wrong one?
 

theSwede

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#82
I built a pfsense firewall in 2009 using relatively cheap and low powered components. It has been running 24/7 since then without any problems.
Thanks to time's recommendation above I recently bought a Belkin Conserve Insight...

GIGABYTE GA-G31M-ES2L
Intel E5200 cpu
Kingston 1 GB DDR2-800
2x Intel gigabit CT adapters
Transcend Industrial Ultra CompactFlash
Compact Flash-IDE adapter from ebay

PicoPSU (can't remember the exact model)
Old IBM laptop adapter from the spare parts bin

If I remember my old measurements correctly it had 9 or 11 percent cpu load when pushing 100 + 60 MBit/s torrent traffic through it.
According to the Belkin Insight it maxes out at 45 watt when booting and it idles at 31 watt. When I put some traffic through it the power consumption seems to rise to 33 watt.

Very decent for a three year old build.
 

Santilli

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#83
I went with a CF-51 laptop. Cost about 130 dollars off ebay. Twice as fast as my original plus using the Kingspec SSD.
Works for what I'm using it for.

The HTPC continues to work.
 

Mercutio

Fatwah on Western Digital
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#84
So I want to put together an ESX machine in an mITX shoebox.

The goal here is to deal with the fact that my coworker absolutely refuses to replace or part ways with the nine year old 17" P4 boatanchor notebook she uses for dev work. This machine needs to be at least portable enough for her to carry between her office and her house (and, of course, she lives far enough from civilization that she has dialup internet, meaning that RDP doesn't work all that well for her).

By my count I'm currently maintaining nine systems for her to work with. I didn't even know about a few of them until my office moved. She knows jack about Virtual machines, so she was just re-purposing classroom computers whenever she needed another one. I'm not sure she actually uses all those machines at once, but she seems to figure out if one of them is turned off pretty quickly (and I do turn them off, in part to annoy her and in part because they make my office too warm).

OK fine.

I have an mITX LGA775 board and a spare Q6600.
I also have an Atom D510 board. The Atom board has four SATA ports, which isn't all that common on mITX stuff.

I ALSO have an i5-3450 and an i7-2600k sitting around, but no mITX board.

The only one of those four options I know will be fine with the heat is the Atom. It's only dual core though and I'm not sure it would work for running four VMs at once.
The Q6600 has a TDP of 105W. That would be super-crappy in any small enclosure, but on the other hand, I wouldn't miss it if tossed it in this machine.
The i5 only needs 77W and the i7 is 95W, which is probably pushing it, but I suspect those guys are probably a lot better from a performance standpoint.

She already said no to a Silverstone Sugo box and she hates the 17" MBP I tried to foist off on her even more than I do.

No matter what I do, I'm going to wind up sticking in a compatible Intel NIC. I suspect that's going to limit my cooling options as much as the enclosure I wind up using.
 
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#85
Some of the shuttle machines would hold up fine to that Q6600 so long as you didn't also try to stick a gaming GPU in there. Specifically I'm thinking about the ones that use heatpipes to a radiator on the exhaust fan. If it doesn't require an optical drive it would be even better.
 

Mercutio

Fatwah on Western Digital
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#86
My experience with Shuttle machines is that the power supplies invariably die an early death and are ridiculously expensive to replace.

I already have a couple options for non-Shuttle enclosures. I have a Thermaltake chassis in mind that I'm probably going to mate with either a 2x 2.5" in one 3.5" tray or a 4x 2.5" in one 5.25" tray, with the idea of spreading I/O out to as many different spindles as I can get away with. And also to give me something to do with a bunch of spare 40 and 80GB (non-SSD) 2.5" drives.
 

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Fatwah on Western Digital
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#87
I assembled the Q6600 in this enclosure and the stock HSF. Added 8GB of DDR2 and set it up with a 300GB Raptor just to be sadistic. Loaded ESX. Then I loaded four VMs onto it and reconfigured all of them to be 1 CPU/1.5GB systems and set them about converting folders full of .Flac files into .MP3s overnight.

I wasn't sure what the outcome would be but this morning after I mercilessly pulled the plug and brought my shoebox up into its BIOS (I don't think there's any other way to check using ESX), the motherboard says the CPU is at 77C. Which means it was probably at 80 or 85 all night long.

Also, I suspect I could get an egg to an edible temperature on that Raptor, though that was a foregone conclusion.
 

LunarMist

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#88
I assembled the Q6600 in this enclosure and the stock HSF. Added 8GB of DDR2 and set it up with a 300GB Raptor just to be sadistic. Loaded ESX. Then I loaded four VMs onto it and reconfigured all of them to be 1 CPU/1.5GB systems and set them about converting folders full of .Flac files into .MP3s overnight.

I wasn't sure what the outcome would be but this morning after I mercilessly pulled the plug and brought my shoebox up into its BIOS (I don't think there's any other way to check using ESX), the motherboard says the CPU is at 77C. Which means it was probably at 80 or 85 all night long.

Also, I suspect I could get an egg to an edible temperature on that Raptor, though that was a foregone conclusion.
Well that should be good enough for the end user, assuming she does not abuse the machine like that. But I'd replace the old 10K drive with an SSD.
 

Mercutio

Fatwah on Western Digital
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#89
She's getting a pair of 5400rpm 80GB drives.

I'm basically doing this out of my own stock of spare parts so I can turn off a bunch of machines that are presently running in my office.
 

CougTek

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#90
She already said no to a Silverstone Sugo box and she hates the 17" MBP I tried to foist off on her even more than I do.
You're the IT guy, you set the option. The ignorant bitch's only right is to shut up and live with your decision. Go tell your boss about the power saving of your solution versus continuing running nine oldies and I'm sure he'll be on your side.

"She already said no..." Pffft! Stupid cow. Put your fist on the desk and make sure you get some respect.
 

CougTek

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#93
I'm also fairly confident that he's the only one with sufficient knowledge to do his job within his company, so the risk of him being fired is close to nil. He has enough lever there to command certain things regarding IT and I'm sure he doesn't have to bow to stupid cows' caprices. And using YOUR OWN STUFF to please that goose...come on! Are you a carpet on which other wipe their feet on? At the very least, make the company pay for her stuff.
 

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Fatwah on Western Digital
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#94
I pretty much could never get fired. However, I also can't tell anyone else what to do with their stuff or how to do their job.
As far as this one computer, I'll extract the value for whatever I give her in other ways.

Like, hey, someone randomly putting a carton of 2TB hard drives on my desk.
 

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Fatwah on Western Digital
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#95
So far, what I have learned from this experience is that my coworker can't comprehend what vsphere is or how to shut down an ESX server in a way that does not involve a power button.
 

Handruin

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#96
So far, what I have learned from this experience is that my coworker can't comprehend what vsphere is or how to shut down an ESX server in a way that does not involve a power button.
Can you disable the power button or change it so that it does a soft shutdown?
 

CougTek

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#99
So far, what I have learned from this experience is that my coworker can't comprehend what vsphere is or how to shut down an ESX server in a way that does not involve a power button.
So far, what I've learned from your experience is that you work with someone who has a turd instead of a brain. That's why it smells every times she open it up.
 

LunarMist

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So far, what I have learned from this experience is that my coworker can't comprehend what vsphere is or how to shut down an ESX server in a way that does not involve a power button.
Is that expected from her job description? Everyone is not trained in IT.
 

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Fatwah on Western Digital
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So far, what I've learned from your experience is that you work with someone who has a turd instead of a brain. That's why it smells every times she open it up.
Not disagreeing.

On the other hand, I know've met assloads of developers and DBAs who don't know the first thing about general purpose IT. DBAs in particular seem to have problems with things you'd think they would pay attention to, like network latency and disk performance, let alone concepts like IP networking.
 

Handruin

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Not disagreeing.

On the other hand, I know've met assloads of developers and DBAs who don't know the first thing about general purpose IT. DBAs in particular seem to have problems with things you'd think they would pay attention to, like network latency and disk performance, let alone concepts like IP networking.
This has also been my experience. Many "developers" I've encountered over the years never even touch the hardware side of things and don't put much thought into how the hardware is being utilized.
 

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Fatwah on Western Digital
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One of the most misbegotten things I've ever seen was a Windows Server set up by an MSSQL DBA. He had managed to configure four drives attached to a RAID controller as RAID0 (for performance!, though I suspect they were delivered from HP in that configuration because I don't think he knew what a RAID BIOS was) and then another three internal drives along WITH the RAID volume as a SoftRAID5.

He couldn't understand why his database was performing so poorly, what with all the spindles it occupied.
 

Stereodude

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I ordered up a Rock64 SBC yesterday. I want to see how it works as a really cheap NAS/server. It has a USB 3.0 port and gigabit ethernet. I ordered the 4GB version. The CPU is comparable to the RPi3+, but has USB 3.0, real gigabit (not connected to USB 2.0 sharing bandwidth with the other USB ports), more RAM, and eMMC capability. I saw benchmarks last time I was looking showing that the Rock64 can max out the gigabit Ethernet connection with a USB 3.0 HDD attached (>100MB/sec for reads and writes).

It looks to be shipping from Hong Kong, so it might be a little while before I get it.
 

jtr1962

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I ordered up a Rock64 SBC yesterday. I want to see how it works as a really cheap NAS/server. It has a USB 3.0 port and gigabit ethernet. I ordered the 4GB version. The CPU is comparable to the RPi3+, but has USB 3.0, real gigabit (not connected to USB 2.0 sharing bandwidth with the other USB ports), more RAM, and eMMC capability. I saw benchmarks last time I was looking showing that the Rock64 can max out the gigabit Ethernet connection with a USB 3.0 HDD attached (>100MB/sec for reads and writes).

It looks to be shipping from Hong Kong, so it might be a little while before I get it.
Maybe a stupid question, but how do you connect a monitor, mouse, keyboard to that thing? There is only one USB port for either a mouse or keyboard, and no VGA or DVI connector for a monitor.
 

Handruin

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Maybe a stupid question, but how do you connect a monitor, mouse, keyboard to that thing? There is only one USB port for either a mouse or keyboard, and no VGA or DVI connector for a monitor.
Looks like it has 2 x USB 2 and 1 x USB 1 for connectivity. There is also a video port on the back which looks like HDBI but I can't tell given the top-view.
 

jtr1962

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Looks like it has 2 x USB 2 and 1 x USB 1 for connectivity. There is also a video port on the back which looks like HDBI but I can't tell given the top-view.
OK, I missed the 2x USB2.0 ports. That takes care of the mouse and keyboard. HDBI is only useful for monitors which have it. VGA or DVI are a lot more universal. Even HDMI is OK. You can use an HDMI to DVI cable for monitors without an HDMI port.
 

Stereodude

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What OS do you plan? Some Linux flavor?
I plan to start with DietPi.

Maybe a stupid question, but how do you connect a monitor, mouse, keyboard to that thing? There is only one USB port for either a mouse or keyboard, and no VGA or DVI connector for a monitor.
I plan to run it headless and control it over SSH. However, it has HDMI and two USB 2.0 ports if you wanted to connect a monitor, keyboard, mouse, etc. You can always add a USB hub if you need more ports.
 

Stereodude

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Looks like it has 2 x USB 2 and 1 x USB 1 for connectivity. There is also a video port on the back which looks like HDBI but I can't tell given the top-view.
It's 2 x USB 2.0 and 1 x USB 3.0.

I had a typo. I meant HDMI in my original reply. I can't tell if it is actually HDMI though...
It's HDMI 2.0, but the nerfed 10.2gbit/sec version. Of course that doesn't matter for my uses.
 

Stereodude

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DietPi reminds me why I'm not fond of Linux. I couldn't get any output from the HDMI output on the Rock64. No idea if that's normal with DietPi. Seems like it might be since the change resolution section of the display setup menu says, "This option is not available for Rock64". So, I got to set it up via SSH. The process is not all that newbie friendly. I eventually got far enough along to get xRDP setup and working so that I would RDP into the box and have a GUI. It has decent performance over SMB.

It can read and write from a SMB share on my Windows 10 Pro "server" at ~45MB/sec read and ~85MB/sec write using the internal DietPi benchmark and a 1000MB test file.

It can read and write on a very fast Sandisk Extreme Pro USB 3.0 stick at 147MB/sec read and 52.3MB/sec write using the same internal benchmark and a 1000MB file. You have to manually install support for exFAT from the command prompt or you get nothing.

Sharing files from the USB 3.0 stick over SMB to my Windows 10 Pro desktop gave me copy speeds (of >1GB files) of ~64MB/sec read (from the Rock64) and ~80MB/sec write.
 

Stereodude

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I should point out that DietPi did have video output from the HDMI port on the Rock64. I think I had a HDMI handshaking issue initially. After power cycling everything it showed video output. It wouldn't boot into the GUI. It gave some X error. I guess the config section/script for DietPi doesn't work correctly. I tried a few different GUI/desktops.

I'm going to try OpenMediaVault instead of DietPi on the Rock64 next.
 
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