It’s After Midnight

It’s been an extraordinarily long time since my last post.  I suppose things have  been relatively quiet.  There are a couple of possible projects coming down the pipeline so I’ve decided to finally make the push for a real server.  I’m going to retire the plentiful 1U’s for something much fancier.

Newegg is lovely as always.  There was a combo deal on the Hard Drive and the Barebones server.  I normally wouldn’t have gone for that model, but I’m not going to complain in this case.  I already have a slimline DVD drive to install and I’ll get another 4 gigs of RAM down the road.

Thankfully a good bit of the server will be subsidized by projects it will be used on, but I should probably give a brief rundown of my thought process anyway.

First, goals.  This WILL be a fully virtualized server.  I’m going to use Xen with an OpenSUSE 11.1 dom0.  My old Ubuntu webservers (2) will be virtualized from their 1Us and installed, as well as an OpenSolaris domU I’ve been wanting to experiment with.

That all being said it means I’d need 2 main things, first, a shitton of RAM, second, a processor that supports full virtualization.  I’m being kind of cheap so I went for the second cheapest one offered by Intel.  Yes, yes, I know AMD offers chips that support this for much lower cost, however, this box will be installed far away from where I’m sitting.  and has a few issues requirements.  Namely it has to be simple and silent.  The Asus barebones 1Us are amazing.  I’ve worked with this model before and it has a sturdy case, simple layout, and is silent.  When I graduate I will have more time to play with server builds but until then I’m going with the Asus.

Beyond that there really weren’t any choices.  4 gigs vs 8 gigs was purely economical, as was the hard drive, and the DVD drive was already here.

I’m at the point in my Engineering study where I really have to give up on all this sys admin crap.  I need to move onto design, be it the electro-mechanical that surrounds the server or be it software design.  I know nothing about it and that’s really got to change.  Hopefully with this commitment I can forget about infrastructure for the next 4 years and concentrate only on real engineering.

This server should eat everything I throw at it, so maybe I’ll try and bomb it while I’m at Otakon.  We’ll see.

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