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Main.PowerEdgePurchaseInfor1.2 - 09 Jan 2007 - 16:03 - JeremyCothrantopic end

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The below configured server from Dell is a current recommended setup which we use. We use Dell partly because they are the preferred computer equipment provider for the University(discounts) and partly to try and use commodity low cost components which are hopefully well tested and not too exotic or difficult to replace or upgrade.

Dell PowerEdge? 2850 Base Unit

$3,109 as of September 16, 2005

following customizations for final price of: $5,593

PowerEdge? 2850
Intel® Xeon™ Processor at 2.8GHz/1MB Cache, 800MHz FSB [Included in Price]

Additional Processor
Intel® Xeon™ Processor at 2.8GHz/1MB Cache, 800MHz FSB [add $299]

2GB DDR2 400MHz (2X1GB), Single Ranked DIMMs [add $499]

Chassis Configuration
Rack Chassis w/Rapid Rails for Dell, HPQ or other Square Hole Racks, PE2850 [add $249]

Operating System
No Operating System

Operating System Addition
Nothing selected

#from point #4 at

RAID 1+0/0+1 > RAID 5:

RAID 5 with 3 disks has become an unfortunate standard among large vendor's economy servers. This is possibly the slowest array configuration possible for PostgreSQL?; you can expect as little as 50% of the query speed as you would get with a plain SCSI disk. Instead, focus on RAID 1 or 1+0 or 0+1 for any set of 2, 4 or 6 disks. Over 6 disks, RAID 5 starts to perform acceptably again, and the comparison tends to be a lot more on the basis of your individual controller. Perhaps more importantly, a cheap RAID card can be a liability; often it is better to use software RAID than the Adaptec built-in card that came with your server.

#I've considered switching from a default RAID 5 setup to a RAID 1 (mirror) setup based on the above analysis, but haven't done so since things seem to run ok with the default RAID setup.

Hard Drive Configuration
Drives attached to embedded PERC4ei, RAID 1, 2 Drives required add $0

Riser Card
Riser with PCI-X Support and Embedded Raid (ROMB) Support [Included in Price]

Active ID Bezel Option [Included in Price]

Primary Hard Drive
146GB 10K RPM Ultra 320 SCSI Hard Drive [add $440]

2nd Hard Drive
146GB 10K RPM Ultra 320 SCSI Hard Drive [add $449]

Primary Controller
Embedded RAID (ROMB) - PERC4ei (Embedded Integrated) [add $299]

2nd Controller and HBAs
Nothing selected

Network Adapter
Dual On-Board NICs [Included in Price]

Additional Network Adapter
Nothing selected

Remote Management
Nothing selected

CD/DVD Drive
24X IDE CD-ROM [Included in Price]

Floppy Drive
1.44MB Floppy Drive [Included in Price]

No Monitor Option [Included in Price]

No Keyboard Option [Included in Price]

No Mouse Option [Included in Price]

Power Supply
Redundant Power Supply With Y-CORD and Straight Cords [add $249]

Nothing selected

None selected

Removable storage

For longer archival storage which doesn't need to be retrieved with much speed, I'm currently focused on implementation of external USB storage drives which are available in 400 Gigabyte sizes for around $330 as of September 2005(brand SimpleTech?).

-- JeremyCothran - 16 Sep 2005
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