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Santilli

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Hi
From what I can gather, the LCD is on the back burner. Don't see it in the order. a 19" CRT, or two of them, used, would be a far better value then one LCD, don't you think?

s
 

Computer Generated Baby

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Santilli said:
From what I can gather, the LCD is on the back burner. Don't see it in the order. a 19" CRT, or two of them, used, would be a far better value then one LCD, don't you think?

It depends on what's needed. For a typical home computer, especially where desktop space is limited, LCD monitors are likely the best choice.

If one needs to do photo or video editing, and there is not a desktop space problem, CRTs are the better choice.

 

CougTek

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Platform said:
By the way, all the Matrox PCI, AGP, and PCI Express GPUs use native designs -- no external bridge chips used to get product out the door in a hurry. Each card model has the I/O bus interface integrated with the GPU core on-chip.
I'm almost sure the recently released G550 for PCI-E 1x slot uses a Texas Instrument chip to convert its native AGP signal into PCI-E compatible signal.
 

Will Rickards

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So the second to last set of boxes arrived today. You know the ones with the motherboard, processor, ram, case and psu. All the really important parts. I'm still waiting on the SCSI cable, which should arrive tomorrow. I had someone forgotten the P160 is aluminum, when I picked it up it almost went out of my hands it was so light.

Regarding the thermal paste versus thermal pad, I believe this is a thermal pad on the bottom of the heatsink. I'll take pictures later to document the process of assembly when I do it this weekend.
 

Tannin

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Computer Generated Baby said:
I wouldn't bother using an analogue G400/G450 on a digital (LCD) monitor -- definitely a step backwards -- unless one wants to buy a cheap-o LCD with analogue-only connectivity.

If you can see any difference, you are a better man than I. Or Kristi, for that matter. With a good quality RAMDAC (such as provided by the G450) there is no difference that we can see. (This may not apply to lesser cards, of course.)
 

Handruin

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Will Rickards said:
I had someone forgotten the P160 is aluminum, when I picked it up it almost went out of my hands it was so light.

Same thing surprised me when I picked up the box at CompUSA a few months ago. I forgot it was aluminum and expected the box to be heavy like most cases.
 

Santilli

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Handruin said:
Will Rickards said:
I had someone forgotten the P160 is aluminum, when I picked it up it almost went out of my hands it was so light.

Same thing surprised me when I picked up the box at CompUSA a few months ago. I forgot it was aluminum and expected the box to be heavy like most cases.

Got me too. Figured Alum and quiet did not =.
I was wrong.

Tannin: Besides Furball, you have another animal, Kristi???

:wink:

G
 

Will Rickards

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Well it is up and running! Any sound issues I feared from the SCSI drive are non-existent. I did install the Nexus fans to keep their sound down. I didn't install the artic silver 5 just left the default grid patterened grey goop on the bottom of the heatsink. It doesn't recognize my x2 processor but seems otherwise to be running fine. I'm trying to get the bios updated now.
 

Will Rickards

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There were a couple things in my way to a 100% successful build that I'm going to recount here.

I discovered a scratch on the face of my case at the bottom under the antec logo. In taking off the face plate, a plastic part broke off.
My motherboard had bios F1 which worked but wasn't identifying my processor. Thank gigabyte for their bios update from windows. I downloaded the update from my laptop and put it on my usb flash drive. I didn't put a floppy drive in this new build on purpose. However downloading the latest version of the gigabyte utilities proved difficult as whenever I put my usb wifi adapter in the machine blue screened. Off to get the latest driver for that. Once that was installed, no problems in getting the bios update utility and updating the bios. Now I have a proper windows task manager with two cpus.
The firewire header from the case doesn't fit my motherboard and it is not separate connectors but one block. So my front firewire won't work. There is a note in the manual about contacting antec for an adapter. The scsi cable was a bit stiff and difficult to route properly.
I had to do my first mod so to speak. I bought the nexus fans but the screw hole goes all the way through instead of just two holes separated by air. A picture would be good but I haven't got to uploading them just yet. The reason they need to be separated is the rubber mounting things antec provided. And the fact that they only provided one set of case mounting screws. So first I took a saw, because I don't have a dremel, and hacked away at that cylinder. A little blood and lots of plastic later and I have my holes but not enough clearance to fish the rubber thing through (only a saw width was cut out after all. So then I had the bright idea of drilling from the other side (non-mounting side). That worked great. I should have done that in the first place.
I think I'm going to have to move my BENQ flush with the face plate instead of recessed like it is now. The facade thing for the cd-rom stops the drawer from retracting so I have to hold it down while the drive retracts. But then I hardly use the cd-rom that much so maybe I'll leave it.
I was pulling the mwave stickers off my memory so it would cool better I guess (but not the crucial stickers so I could keep my warranty), when I saw this little thing on the back of the sticker. On closer look, it is one of those tiny rectangular things on the ram. Comparing the sticks (I have two of the same), I see that one of those things is missing from one of the sticks of ram. But the computer is working so I'm not sure how important it is. And it was missing from somewhere not even under the sticker so how it got there is anyone's guess. I think I'm going to follow up with crucial anyway but it is working. Maybe I'll leave it running overnight with a memory test or something.

This thing is fast. Explore disk access is like instantaneous. Opening my computer is the same. And quiet too. Not too hot either. The temp probes in the case say 86F and 81F. One is on top of the cpu fan and the other is on top of the scsi hard drive. The cpu temp was listed as 32C in the bios.

I didn't bother connecting the front audio, as I don't think I'll use it.

Now begins the long process of downloading drivers and installing software. Once setup then I'll move the hard drive from my old computer and the modem (so I get callerid info on the screen and for the occasional use of dialing into a client).

Still waiting for the Dell 2001FP to drop to like 450. It is/was 500 which isn't too bad but that is 531 with tax.
 

Handruin

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Sounds like you have a nice setup. I had a similar issue with an unrecognized CPU in a system I just built a couple days ago. I bought one of the new 754 Sempron 64 CPU's and when booting off of gigabyte's K8VM800M, it said unrecognized AMD. It worked fine, but that bugged me. So I downloaded a new BIOS from gigabyte and installed it using their windows tool. Rebooted and it works just fine.
 

Santilli

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Tannin said:
Santilli said:
Tannin: Besides Furball, you have another animal, Kristi???

I'll be nice. I won't tell her you said that. Anyway, she likes the Furball, so maybe she'll take that as a compliment. :eek:

I figured, with Splash, and his split personalities, you might have another one?

I'm sorry, I didn't know she was a lowly human like the rest of us. :wink:

Or is it shes not an orange furball, and therefore it's an inner spieces thing?

Never know. Remember, around here, San Francisco is only 40 minutes away... :wink:

S
 

Santilli

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Will:

Once you get used to scsi, I really doubt you'll go back..

:mrgrn:

And, duals make it pretty quick, operating system wise. Are you using XP 64?

Glad things are going well.

Greg
 

Will Rickards

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Well it hasn't been without it's problems so far.
Once I moved the computer in place and rerouted the wire (oh what a pain that is). The keyboard stopped working in windows. It was hooked up to the PS/2 port. So I tried another one (same model) and it gave the same problem. So I removed the device from windows and then it worked for a while. Then I was at work yesterday and my wife calls and said it isn't working again. So last night I just plugged it in a USB port and said the hell with PS/2 anyway.

And I can't install NOD32 (see thread here).
 

mubs

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I am sorry for bringing up the (presumed) dead. Did the "XP SCSI bug" ever get resolved? The no cached writes thing? I remember Pradeep and others saying Win2003 has an option to force write caching in Device Mangler by saying that the system was on an UPS. What about XP SP2? I guess SATA is seen by XP as SCSI? My Promise add-in controller is, and when they castrated W2k in one of the Service Packs, I could feel the slowdown, but have gotten used to it now.

Can anybody clarify the situation for me, please?
 

Buck

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So, the dual-core 4400+ finally arrived, and I've assembled the system with a GAK8NULTRA9 motherboard. The BIOS didn't show the correct CPU model number, so we upgraded to the F5 BIOS. After doing that, everything turned to crap. I'll be attempting to go back to the F4 BIOS, at least Windows will install.
 

Bozo

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Mubs, The XP SCSI bug was repaired in XP 64bit but not in 32bit. In 64bit you can enable cached writes via Device Manager.

Bozo :mrgrn:
 

Buck

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So, the F4 BIOS let us proceed with the installation further than we have before. Nonetheless, the system did it's sudden shutdown. Anyway, the guy I built this system for took the system so that he could diagnose the problem. He seems to enjoy this stuff and has a brain like Steven Hawkings. Personally, I don't like a computer to leave my posession when it is still limping along, but he insists and he's gladly paid in full.

Anyway, here are the toys he's playing with:
Gigabyte GA-K8N ULTRA-9
ADA4400CDBOX
OCZ OCZ4002048ELDCPE-K x 2
Matrox P65-MDDE128
FDD
LG GSA-4163B
Antec P-180
OCZ OCZ600ADJ
Windows XP Pro SP2
 

mubs

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Thanks, Bozo. Apparently after the initial rantings, nobody seems to care about impaired SCSI performance in XP 32-bit, then?
 

Pradeep

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So I'm looking for a new jumbo fileserver for work.

Possible workload:

Three workstations, each pumping out about 10MB/sec of JPEGs (only writes to fileserver, no reads).

On the read side, there will be three or more workstations accessing the JPEGs, doing image processing work on them, and saving a copy on the fileserver. Maybe 7MB/sec for each of the three, read and write.

Question: It seems the Areca SATA RAID cards are the bees knees for performance. Anyone have any idea if say an 8 drive RAID 10 with 400GB SATA drives can keep up with the above? I've seen some impressive sustained STR numbers, but I know those numbers reduce dramatically with smaller random access. If the load on the fileserver grows, would adding more drives to the array help any? (16 or 24 ports are available).

SCSI is not an option as capacity is at a premium. Performance and capacity are top priority. Price within reason is secondary.

TIA.
 

Handruin

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Buck said:
So, the F4 BIOS let us proceed with the installation further than we have before. Nonetheless, the system did it's sudden shutdown. Anyway, the guy I built this system for took the system so that he could diagnose the problem. He seems to enjoy this stuff and has a brain like Steven Hawkings. Personally, I don't like a computer to leave my posession when it is still limping along, but he insists and he's gladly paid in full.

Anyway, here are the toys he's playing with:
Gigabyte GA-K8N ULTRA-9
ADA4400CDBOX
OCZ OCZ4002048ELDCPE-K x 2
Matrox P65-MDDE128
FDD
LG GSA-4163B
Antec P-180

OCZ OCZ600ADJ
Windows XP Pro SP2

That's sad news. I was planning on that same combination of MB and CPU... Maybe even the GA-K8N PRO-SLI since it's cheaper... The 4400+ has finally come down to $549 at newegg, compared to the $700 it used to be.
 

Santilli

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Wow. Thaqt's my setup:
GA-K8NS ultra 939
and, I've got a GAK8NSC-939
sitting around.

I guess for this one, they have a F7 or 8 bios, but, the other is still at 5. Hope they get it fixed.
Dual cores would be nice...

s
 

time

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Pradeep said:
Three workstations, each pumping out about 10MB/sec of JPEGs (only writes to fileserver, no reads).
...
On the read side, there will be three or more workstations accessing the JPEGs, doing image processing work on them, and saving a copy on the fileserver. Maybe 7MB/sec for each of the three, read and write.
...
Question: It seems the Areca SATA RAID cards are the bees knees for performance. Anyone have any idea if say an 8 drive RAID 10 with 400GB SATA drives can keep up with the above?

1. I imagine your JPEGs are large, so random access should be less important than STR, provided your drives and OS are doing writeback (without which you have no chance).

2. The Areca controller turns in respectable RAID 5 numbers, at least when compared to 3Ware. However, the 3Ware destroys the Areca in RAID 10. Stick with 3Ware.

3. RAID 10 is not just about STR. 8 drives means up to 4 separate writes at once, provided your striping works. But this raises the question, why not use 3 independent drives? Or, why use a single server anyway?
 

ddrueding

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Also, the Areca cards support up to a 2GB ECC DIMM for cache, that should help your random access a bit (especially for writes).

I've been trying to find a way to justify the expanse for my home fileserver, the actual reason is the coolness factor, but my brain filters that one our before actual purchase.

So you're looking for 30MB/sec write while 21MB/sec read? Can't be that difficult, would this be a sustained 24/7 operation? What would happen if the queues fell behind?
 

Pradeep

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time said:
1. I imagine your JPEGs are large, so random access should be less important than STR, provided your drives and OS are doing writeback (without which you have no chance).

2. The Areca controller turns in respectable RAID 5 numbers, at least when compared to 3Ware. However, the 3Ware destroys the Areca in RAID 10. Stick with 3Ware.

3. RAID 10 is not just about STR. 8 drives means up to 4 separate writes at once, provided your striping works. But this raises the question, why not use 3 independent drives? Or, why use a single server anyway?

1. JPEGs are around 7-10MB each.

2. http://www.tweakers.net/reviews/557/19
Looking at the numbers I'm thinking RAID 5 will be the way to go. They appear to have fixed the Areca's poor random I/O via a firmware upgrade. Also I hesitate to purchase a product without SATA2 support. Does 3ware have their online expansion/migration working yet?

3. For application compatibility and load management reasons, it is desirable to have a single large logical volume. If demand scales up, we would probably put in a second server for another cluster of machines. But for now we want everything in the one place so we can find the data and work on it. Network connectivity is via gigabit ethernet, we would probably have a dedicated gigabit port for each connection to the server.

dd: We'll probably go with the 1GB of cache, can't find a 2GB SO-DIMM anywhere. We would be looking at six write streams (3*10MB+3*7MB) 51MB/sec and three read streams (3*7MB) 21MB/sec. Operation is currently 16/5. If performance allows, we would also be doing some processing on the images in the background (OCRing) or batched overnight during 3rd shift. Write queue having any kind of pause is unacceptable, it causes issues. It would be great if we had something with excess performance, so that we could scale up the number or thruput of each connection without scrapping everything.
 

time

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Hmmm, they've updated that review a couple of times since I read it some time back. The firmware update fixed some things and the new model fixes most of the rest. Areca looks really attractive now, although still behind 3Ware in at least one relevant test.

I have read that 3Ware actually came out with its own updated firmware before the review was published, yet the benchmarks were run on the old firmware - don't know if this is true.

I am curious how they managed to get a 4-drive RAID 5 to outperform a 4-drive RAID 10 in writes ...

I also have no idea why they limited the RAID 10 configurations to 4 drives while comparing the results to 8-drive RAID 5 configurations. :roll:
 

Gilbo

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time said:
I am curious how they managed to get a 4-drive RAID 5 to outperform a 4-drive RAID 10 in writes ...

Well, the theoretical write-through speed to a 4 disk RAID 5 is higher than a 4 disk RAID 10 for writes >=stripe size (3x disk bandwidth vs 2x disk bandwidth). I can only assume that the parity processing is fast enough on the Areca that it is no longer the bottleneck it typically is on most RAID 5 cards. It's only recently that hardware RAID cards have actually started using decent processors.

I have to say though that I haven't looked at the test. IMO many of Tweakers' tests border on ridiculously contrived so it may be a totally unrealistic scenario.
 

Bozo

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I just ran ATTO on a 3Ware 8500 with 4 WD1200JD drives running in RAID 5. Writes topped out at 27Mb/Sec and reads 62Mb/Sec.

Drivers and firmware are about a year old.

The computer is running 2003 Server with write cache enabled.

Bozo :mrgrn:
 

Santilli

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Bozo said:
I just ran ATTO on a 3Ware 8500 with 4 WD1200JD drives running in RAID 5. Writes topped out at 27Mb/Sec and reads 62Mb/Sec.

Drivers and firmware are about a year old.

The computer is running 2003 Server with write cache enabled.

Bozo :mrgrn:

THAT SUCKS :excl:

YOU NEED SCSI, AND CHEETAHS.... :mrgrn: :excl: :wink:

S
 

Pradeep

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So after a knock down drag it out fight with the IT Manager, we are going to try an Areca 1230 (12 ports) PCI-Express controller, with six 400GB drives.

The doubt in his mind? That the POS Promiseless SX6000s that we currently use in RAID 5 is not in fact the bottleneck, it's our Gigabit network :eek: And he was trying to tell the CEO that IDE drives max out at 16MB/sec (yeah back in ATA/2 days), not with the 250GB IDE Maxtors we currently use.

I ended up stating that if the Areca doesn't provide a shitload improvement in I/O, I would reimburse the company and pay for the card myself.
 

Mercutio

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Your manager sounds like he needs to be taken out and beaten.

And I can affirm that Promise SXx000s suck at RAID5. I've tried the 4000 and the 6000 at different times and they were both abysmal.
 

tazwegion

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Pradeep said:
I ended up stating that if the Areca doesn't provide a shitload improvement in I/O, I would reimburse the company and pay for the card myself.

Geez... that's a gamble, hope it pays off ;)

16Mb/sec LMAO :lol: perhaps you should be the new IT manager eh? that is after Merc' has beaten the last one senseless :aok:
 

LiamC

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Mercutio said:
Your manager sounds like he needs to be taken out and beaten.

:lol: Maybe Merc has been reading too much BOFH.

Uh oh, maybe Merc is the BOFH! Do not mess with this man! :eekers:

:D
 
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