Core i7 coffee lake home server - or better skylake xeon?

Discussion in 'Processors and Motherboards' started by stefan77, Sep 20, 2018.

  1. stefan77

    stefan77 New Member

    Mar 30, 2017
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    Hi folks,

    I want to build a small server and need some opinions.

    Purpose of the build: Small All-In-One Home Server (OpenHab, Couple of small VMs, a bit of storage, maybe firewall / VPN appliance)

    So overall, not tooooo heavy stuff.

    Most important:
    - decent energy on idle
    - long life @ 24/7 (not taking power supply life time into account)

    After doing some CPU research, I ended up with the conclusion that the Core i7-8700T is my favor at the moment.

    Now, I have no experience with Core i CPUs at all. Only used Xeons so far. Unfortunately, I can't wait for the Xeon E-2100 to be available. But on the other hand, I want the most recent architecture and Supermicro has a nice range of 1151 boards for the 8th gen Core processors.

    I will be fine with I/O. My main consideration is non-ECC. No experience with that. How much does it matter running 24/7?

  2. pricklypunter

    pricklypunter Well-Known Member

    Nov 10, 2015
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    ECC memory for something like a router/ firewall appliance is, for most home use anyway, probably overkill. For server based roles, and especially where data storage is concerned, ECC memory should really be considered as a requirement of the build. It is not that much more expensive either and if building with used parts, can often be cheaper. CPU's today are powerful enough that you could, theoretically at least, run server roles on a smartphone, or any other small home micro for that matter, but that doesn't mean it's a good fit for the purpose. Servers, like gaming machines etc, need proper consideration of the roles you'll be asking of them, and choosing parts that when put together, work together in a predictable and reliable manner. Ask yourself this, is the data you'll be storing and manipulating critical to you? How much pain would be caused if you lost it through data corruption? If the answer is anything other than "I don't care if it all goes wrong" then you should consider the use of ECC memory :)
  3. Stephan

    Stephan IT Professional

    Apr 21, 2017
    Likes Received:
    As I get older I start to value machines that do not fail randomly. Like a non-ECC "server" with silent RAM corruption during compilation of a large project that goes on for hours. Or data that is corrupted in RAM and written corrupted to disk afterwards even. To quote "The Essential Craftsman" from Youtube, buy the best tool you can afford. So if ECC is available, buy that.
    Bernhard Neuhauser and Tha_14 like this.
  4. wildpig1234

    wildpig1234 Well-Known Member

    Aug 22, 2016
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    2011 v2. I am still favoring those... ;)
  5. BackupProphet

    BackupProphet Well-Known Member

    Jul 2, 2014
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    My favorite low power server these days is the Dell R210 II. Silent and around ~20 watt idle. Can be found for less than 200 USD with 16-32GB ram.
  6. nk215

    nk215 Active Member

    Oct 6, 2015
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    The practical difference between non-ECC and ECC ram is reboot the every couple of month vs couple of years.
  7. PeterF

    PeterF New Member

    Jul 28, 2014
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    How silent is silent?
    Can I have it in my office without problems?
    Can I put it under my bed and still sleep?

    I am also looking for a small silent server and had not considered rack due to the vacuum-cleaner sound.
    I had an old Opteron server and when I started that the family left the house!

  8. Evan

    Evan Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2016
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    R210 is fine on a desk in office.
    Under you bed, I have a very Low tolerance for sound so unless it’s fanless and completely silent then no. (Other may be say it’s fine I Guess but tolerate the sound of aircon and that’s about it)
  9. Bernhard Neuhauser

    Bernhard Neuhauser New Member

    Aug 16, 2018
    Likes Received:
    The practical benefit is: it saves lots of you time on troubleshooting if one of your memory modules is starting to fail.
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