Server

 

 

 

 

 

I have a server I built some 12 years ago that runs Linux and (originally) had 2 terrabytes of storage. Over the last few years I had a couple drives die and the space has gone down. Linux has become crippled from some ill installed software and a few random power outages. I had no UPS on it. I t basically contained all the backups for the home computers, Music cd-s, tapes, and some LP’s. All the software installs, like Drivers, Programs, etc. were backuped on it, as well as all the pictures we took on the digital cameras, and all the other photos we had were scanned in.

Before I took it apart, recently, it still would work, but Windows 7 would not see the shares, and since we are all running Windows Vista or Windows 7, um, it was time to fix it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

As far as hardware, its an old full tower case, AT. It had a standard PS, 300 watts. it had about 6 of those crappy little old screamer fans, 80 mm. For the guts, there was a P3, 866 with 256 cache and 133 fsb, sitting on a Gigabyte 60XE rev 1.1. For Ram I had 3 sticks of the second (or third, yea ok, it was maybe the fourth best) I had, (after all I put in the desktops we had) So were talking about 768 gigs, of that wonderful 133 Dram.

Down to the add-ons, I had 2 extra lan cards in it, 1 Intel, and 1 3Com. Both were blazing 10/100, PCI standard fair.  There was no onboard video so I had a crappy S3 Virge AGP 1x card shoved in, it had 4mb mem and  100Mhz 64 bit.  Hey, a server doesn’t need a great GPU right? the tough thing was finding one that played nice with Linux, most wouldn’t go more than 1024 x 768 and a lot of them had all kinds of sprites and crud that eventually blotted out the entire display. Ok, case, motherboard, cpu, network, video, ram, yea, now the good part... I had bought one piece of hardware that made this entire build. A 3Ware 7800 raid card. It plugged into a PCI slot, and connected to 8 ide drives. It would run Raid 0,1,5,10, and JBOD. And it worked like a charm. At the time it was so new that I had to pay a Linux guru to make RedHat work with it. When it was all up and running, I could play music files on 3 machines at the same time and no chugging. That was pretty cool. It sat there and ran for years just like that, running Samba, Apache, and some other misc stuff.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Enter Windows 7. The server was really on it’s last leg already, when my Windows 2000 desktop died. It was all I could do to get the info offloaded to the server from the desktop. Them I found Windows 7 not playing nice with Samba. Hmm. Thanks MS, I seem to remember something years ago that got them in trouble about Netbeui / NetBios. They were trying to tweak it to knock out other networking companies. Anyhow, The newer version of Samba deals with this, so on the NEW server... That’s right, I’m supposed to be talking about the new server, damn, sorry.

OK, enough about the old junk. This is the hardware going into the NEW server!

Same Case, old ass full tower, hey it has lots of room for hard drives, what can I say. However there are a few mods... Like NO crappy 80mm fans. 2- 140mm fans and 4- 120 fans, that’s all, even counting the psu. So, lots of new large holes in the case.

The motherboard is an Intel 7520BD2 Server Board, yea baby, SERVER, it says so right on the board. OK, it’s kinda old, but it has 8 slots for ram, up to 16Gb max. It support Dual channel, as well as sparing and mirroring. It has 2- PCI Express slots, 3-PCI-X slots, and 1 PCI. (up to 6 independent busses). Dual-channel SATA supporting RAID 0 and 1. It supports 64bit, Hyperthreading, 1 or 2 Xeon processors. 800 MHz FSb. You can connect 2 ATA 100 drives, as well as 2 SATA drives to the Intel ICH5R raid controller, in RAID 0 or 1. It has a floppy controller and onboard dual Gb Ethernet controller. 1 Intel, 1 Marvel. 10/100/1000 speeds, supporting teaming and failover. It has 8Mb of onboard mem to an ATI Rage GPU.  It came with 1Gb (1 stick) Ram, and 2 2.2GHz Zeon processors with heatsinks and fans. (ARGH, there is 2 80mm fans here) When they die, I’ll put a Kuhler 620 on them if I can.

So, case, motherboard, cpu, network, video, ram, ah, and a 3Ware 7800, and lots of fans. Oh, almost forgot, since ide is kinda going bye bye, I found a real deal on a 3Ware 9500s-12. That controlls 12 Sata-II drives. It runs on a PCI-x (NOT Express, this is an older, extinct variety of PCI!) it runs at 133 and 64bit. Some versions of the PCI-x run at I think 533! (not mine). So, I have quite a few older IDE drives to plug into the 7800, but virtually no SATA drives for the 9500. Right, drives... I have a total of 17 mounting slots for 3.5 drives. There are 3 Cooler Master 4 drives into 3 bays drive cages, (which come with 120 mm fans). There is also the old drive cage I had in there which I re-drilled to mount 5 drives into. That will mount on the bottom front with a 140mm fan in front of it.

Wow, this sounds great. However, the old power supply will NEVER run that many drives, its a 350 watt psu with only 2 SATA connectors. I also have a 450 watt new PSU with more connectors for SATA as well as the 2 4 pin connectors I need for this MB. I decided 450 might not even make it if I loaded it with drives. So, I decided to mount both psu’s and interconnect them (green and black wire). I hacked into the 350 and added more 4 pin molex connectors to the wires I had after removing the ATX connector. I also made them longer to reach the remote location of the drives... Solder and shrink tube makes short work of it. The extra connectors were scavenged from a dead (or too small to keep) PSU. On the 450 I will be adding some SATA power leads much the same way. I also have to connect the green and a black wire to power up (and down) both at the same time. Just to make it easier, and not have 2 power cords, I added a connector to the inside of the 350 PSU so I can plug in the 450 to power inside the case. I’m going to try to fit a 120mm fan to the inside of the 350 and rid myself of the 80mm fan. This will put me at 6 fans total. I have a KazeMaster Pro 6 fan controller from Scythe, I’m going to mount somewhere... It should be interesting since I do not have an empty bay, and the entire top half of this case will be full of hard drives. I was trying to find one of the 3.5 KazeMaster fan controls, but they seem to be discontinued.

I’m hoping to aquire some 2Tb SATA drives to configure a Raid 5 array with a hot spare to reach 8 to 10 TerraBytes, we’ll see how I do.

I was looking at Amahi for a server OS, but the buy this, buy that kinda scares me, so I’m back to a few flavors of Linux, including Ubuntu, Fedora, SuSe, or CentOs (which is the one leading right now)

I plan to test the OS with the PATA drives, and see how it works, and get the kinks ironed out before I worry too much about the large array. I want to have Apache, MySQL, PHP, Samba, Webmin, as well as some kind of backup program for the Windows Desktops and Laptops, and a media streaming program. I plan to re-backup all my music CD’s to a lossless Flac or Ogg. Then have the MP3 files as well for streaming, and putting on phones etc. I want to get a turntable that works really good so I can backup about 400 lbs of vinyl as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PSU 1

PSU 1

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Helper

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Solder and Shrink Wrap

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Shrink Wrap Tidy

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All done with Round 1

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New location for PSU

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Planning

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PSU Mount

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450 Watt PSU

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Re-fabbed Drive Cage

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More Parts

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KazeMaster Pro

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Fan Controller Backside

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Test fit

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3Ware 9500

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