Dual Xeon XenServer Motherboard Recommendation

hoekma

New Member
Feb 3, 2017
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Hi all,

First of all, thanks to others on this site from whose experience I have benefited while researching a motherboard for a dual Xeon 2670 build I've been contemplating. Thanks especially to the guys from THIS THREAD

As a software developer, I'm looking to build something at home that will let me load up a bunch of virtual servers using XenServer. The priorities are cores and ram to divvy out between virtual servers. Some will be windows but mostly Ubuntu Linux. It will also run my PFSense firewall so I need least 3 network ports.

I'm leaning hard toward the Intel S2600CP2j or 4jJ board. This is partially because I don't see any level of XenServer certification for the ASUS Z9PA-D16 on the ASUS site HERE, or on Citrix' site HERE. I don't see anything for ASRock boards and XenServer anywhere.

Does anyone have positive (or negative) experience with XenServer in this kind of setup that can help me get it right the first time?

p.s. if the dual-2670 fad has passed and there's a better overall solution, I'm wide open to other approaches but trying to keep the build under $1500.

Thanks!!
 

Patrick

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Dec 21, 2010
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Are you looking for this to be a rackmount or a tower server?
 

hoekma

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Feb 3, 2017
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Thanks for the fast response! I had planned to put it into a tower, but hadn't considered the rack mount idea. No reason not to get a little rack I guess.
 

Patrick

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Dec 21, 2010
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Here is my current thinking.

E5-2670 V1 is a great option for low cost if you need 16 cores/ 32 threads. Another nice aspect is that DDR3 4GB/ 8GB/ 16GB DDR3 RDIMMs are inexpensive.

If you are willing to spend a bit more, I do think you can get a server that has significantly lower power consumption and more performance. I am going to post my next FS thread next week and may have barebones V3 2x 10C / 20T (20C / 40T) 1U/ 2U boxes for under $1000 (sans RAM.) I am still working on configurations so do not quote me on that. Still need to have the day where I figure out what stays and goes in the data center :) I do think there are other opportunities for hitting these price points as well with V3 parts.

RAM wise DDR3 pricing is so good that V1/ V2 chips make a lot of sense. Then again, once you need more than 16 cores/ 32 threads, there is a case to be made for going V3. Sadly 128GB DDR4 RAM is around $800-900 v. $500-550 for DDR3.
 
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nk215

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Oct 6, 2015
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I recommend a e5-2670v1 as it still a great deal with lots of computing power.

2x CPU = $190
128g DDR3 = $250
Supermicro MB = $270

That's $710 (much less with the Natex deal). Put a few hundreds more toward SSD and a case/PSU. At the end you'll end up around $1000-$1200 mark. DDR4 is still too expensive.

In general, you'll run out of memory before computing power. I would also stay with a 4U/wide boxes so I can use tall CPU coolers. They are are very quiet compared to the compact coolers.
 

hoekma

New Member
Feb 3, 2017
6
1
3
53
Here is my current thinking.

E5-2670 V1 is a great option for low cost if you need 16 cores/ 32 threads. Another nice aspect is that DDR3 4GB/ 8GB/ 16GB DDR3 RDIMMs are inexpensive.

If you are willing to spend a bit more, I do think you can get a server that has significantly lower power consumption and more performance. I am going to post my next FS thread next week and may have barebones V3 2x 10C / 20T (20C / 40T) 1U/ 2U boxes for under $1000 (sans RAM.) I am still working on configurations so do not quote me on that. Still need to have the day where I figure out what stays and goes in the data center :) I do think there are other opportunities for hitting these price points as well with V3 parts.

RAM wise DDR3 pricing is so good that V1/ V2 chips make a lot of sense. Then again, once you need more than 16 cores/ 32 threads, there is a case to be made for going V3. Sadly 128GB DDR4 RAM is around $800-900 v. $500-550 for DDR3.
I will look forward to the new post on the v3. How much difference in the power consumption? Looking at an annualized basis that might make the cut if it saves enough money on the electric bill.
 

hoekma

New Member
Feb 3, 2017
6
1
3
53
I recommend a e5-2670v1 as it still a great deal with lots of computing power.

2x CPU = $190
128g DDR3 = $250
Supermicro MB = $270

That's $710 (much less with the Natex deal). Put a few hundreds more toward SSD and a case/PSU. At the end you'll end up around $1000-$1200 mark. DDR4 is still too expensive.

In general, you'll run out of memory before computing power. I would also stay with a 4U/wide boxes so I can use tall CPU coolers. They are are very quiet compared to the compact coolers.
Thanks for the reply! Do you have experience with the Supermicro running XenServer? Making sure I wind up with something to support the Citrix OS is the main thing I'm trying to figure out in this thread. The SuperMicro X9DR3‑F isn't listed on the XenServer compatibility list. I'm okay with that if I can find someone to vouch that it works.