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Author Topic: New Computer  (Read 3008 times)

Stoic Joker

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New Computer
« on: August 19, 2015, 07:13:09 AM »
So it's time to put my now mildly arcane decade old flagship (Spunky-V) out to pasture. And to that end I got an HP Z440 Workstation (Base Package: L0P72UT#ABA) through the company. In years past I always built my own...but I just don't have time to do all the research necessary to effectively play the price point razor edge of leading/cutting edge hardware. So... since we're an HP ASP -(making a huge discount an option)- I decided to go - the lazy route - with a semi customized packaged box that had all the hardware matched for me.

Here be the Specs:
CPU: 6 core Xeon ES-1650 v3 (Turbos to 3.8GHz)
RAM: 16GB
Video: ATi W5100 (with 4 DisplayPort outputs)
OS Drive: 256GB SSD
Storage Drive: 1TB RAID5 array.

I'm a bit nervous about the SSD ... But time will tell - At least it comes with a 3 year warranty..

mouser

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2015, 07:15:32 AM »
Looks awesome to me.

40hz

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #2 on: August 19, 2015, 10:20:42 AM »
…In years past I always built my own...but I just don't have time to do all the research necessary to effectively play the price point razor edge of leading/cutting edge hardware…

Et tu Stoic?

Same here. Unless it's something that's being purpose built, customization makes more sense than custom-building these days. The 'bang for the buck' is usually very competitive or better than a custom build would be. And you get a warranty. Plus a copy of Windows (if you're still using it :P) at the cheapest price point that's generally available.

But that's part of the ageing process I guess. Unnecessarily sweating technical details and pulling ones hair out no longer seems as much fun as it used to for some odd reason.

Anyway, that box sounds pretty sweet. Rock it for all it's worth.

wraith808

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2015, 12:49:18 PM »
^ Same here.  At one point, I was building computers for friends, family...  then I started doing it only if they paid me.  Then I switched to doing it for myself only.  Then I only cracked them open to upgrade.  Now I'm at the point of someone needing to pay me in order to get me to crack open my own case.  I really hate hardware now.

But I do like your box!  But... why are they advertising the video as ATI?  And I have had problems before with workstation graphics for non-workstation use.  You get strange errors sometimes...

Stoic Joker

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #4 on: August 19, 2015, 06:44:38 PM »
But I do like your box!  But... why are they advertising the video as ATI?  And I have had problems before with workstation graphics for non-workstation use.  You get strange errors sometimes...

Thanks. I'm not sure what you're driving at on the ATi part, the base configuration came with no video card. So I picked the ATi W5100 out of their available line up, because that's what came in the Z420 workstation I have at the office ... And I've been running ATI video since XP x64.

On a side note, I'm posting this using IE5 on a freshly installed Windows 2000 (SP4) VM running on the new machine.

DC on Win2k VM.jpg

wraith808

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #5 on: August 19, 2015, 08:06:17 PM »
But I do like your box!  But... why are they advertising the video as ATI?  And I have had problems before with workstation graphics for non-workstation use.  You get strange errors sometimes...

Thanks. I'm not sure what you're driving at on the ATi part, the base configuration came with no video card. So I picked the ATi W5100 out of their available line up, because that's what came in the Z420 workstation I have at the office ... And I've been running ATI video since XP x64.


Oh... I was just saying because ATI doesn't exist anymore.  In fact, if you go to the AMD website, it's advertised as AMD.  It was just idle curiosity.

http://www.amd.com/e...ion/firepro-3d/5100#

http://www.anandtech...00-w5100-w4100-w2100

They're nice cards.  It's just my own bias against using WS cards for Non-WS work from my work in a former life as a QA analyst.  Consumer appplications sometimes get weird results on WS grade cards in my experience.  But that was mostly for multimedia... and just, again, idle musings.

Stoic Joker

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #6 on: August 19, 2015, 09:04:23 PM »
But I do like your box!  But... why are they advertising the video as ATI?  And I have had problems before with workstation graphics for non-workstation use.  You get strange errors sometimes...

Thanks. I'm not sure what you're driving at on the ATi part, the base configuration came with no video card. So I picked the ATi W5100 out of their available line up, because that's what came in the Z420 workstation I have at the office ... And I've been running ATI video since XP x64.


Oh... I was just saying because ATI doesn't exist anymore.  In fact, if you go to the AMD website, it's advertised as AMD.  It was just idle curiosity.

Oh Yeah...that ... I've been calling them ATi for so many years, I just keep forgetting about the name change.


They're nice cards.  It's just my own bias against using WS cards for Non-WS work from my work in a former life as a QA analyst.  Consumer appplications sometimes get weird results on WS grade cards in my experience.  But that was mostly for multimedia... and just, again, idle musings.

I get where you're coming from, but I'm not really a "consumer applications" kind of guy... :D So it fits for my intended usage. I want to run 3 monitors so I can spread out the VM's, I never play video games, and I watch TV...(Gasp!)...on a TV. ;)

Innuendo

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2015, 10:33:09 PM »
I'm an odd one....I build PCs not to save any money or for any performance benefit. I build them because it relaxes me.  :huh:

Renegade

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2015, 10:53:58 PM »
Beats the new box I got.

I got frustrated trying to find what I wanted and just went out and bought one.
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

Stoic Joker

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #9 on: August 21, 2015, 06:26:41 AM »
I'm an odd one....I build PCs not to save any money or for any performance benefit. I build them because it relaxes me.  :huh:

Fair enough, I like working on motorcycles for much the same reason.

MilesAhead

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #10 on: August 21, 2015, 06:41:06 AM »
Fair enough, I like working on motorcycles for much the same reason.

Now it all makes sense.  I was wondering why every time I wanted to use another core on one of your builds I had to pull the clutch lever and toe the peg up one.  :)

f0dder

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2015, 01:25:13 PM »
Nice, but "1TB Raid5"?

Why Raid5, especially for such a small volume?
- carpe noctem

TaoPhoenix

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #12 on: September 16, 2015, 01:35:54 PM »
Nice, but "1TB Raid5"?

Why Raid5, especially for such a small volume?

Hey, y'all wanna just put in a two-paragraph explanation of what this even means so non-techies like me can pretend to know what this even means?

What is Raid 5, why would it be odd for "such a small volume", why didn't you just get a bigger HD (where this config might make sense?), and why not a second HD as well besides the existing base SSD? My box is aging too, but I have a dual 1-TB set of HD's from 2006, so I thought they'd be up to something like 4-6 TB by now per each hard drive. Or for at least one hard drive if you went that route, why 1TB? Why not bigger?


TaoPhoenix

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #13 on: September 16, 2015, 01:37:40 PM »
So it's time to put my now mildly arcane decade old flagship (Spunky-V) ...

Heh "Hey Spunky-V, say hi to my Twilight!"  (The end of XP, Mission Accomplished!)

;D

f0dder

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #14 on: September 16, 2015, 02:50:12 PM »
Hey, y'all wanna just put in a two-paragraph explanation of what this even means so non-techies like me can pretend to know what this even means?
Raid5 is a RAID mode using parity. TL;DR is "requires at least three disks, can survive death of one single disk".

It's a mode that never made terribly much sense to me, given the amount of horror stories I've heard of a second drive dying while you're trying to rebuild your array after one disk failed - the rebuilding process is pretty disk intensive.

For a volume as small as 1TB, I'd personally just run a mirror with two disks - or heck, if the data was important enough, three disks :)
- carpe noctem

Stoic Joker

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #15 on: September 17, 2015, 07:00:03 AM »
Nice, but "1TB Raid5"?

Why Raid5, especially for such a small volume?

I like RAID5, it has server me well in the past. And I need the extra speed of the stripped NLSAS for the Hyper-V VMs, but wanted the safety net of parity also. Not to mention that I've seen these controllers do mirroring...performance is not impressive (read horrid). My workstation here at the office is (identical except for disk configuration) a single disk, which goes straight to its knees when I get a few VMs going, especially if one of them decides to pull something cute like indexing or updates. On the RAID5 array I had 3 VMs (Vista, 7, and 8.1) all doing updates at the same time, and the drive was still responsive.

I've already got 2 physical servers (08R2 & 12R2) running on the home network so - massive - storage space wasn't a design requirement ... Performance on a budget however was.. ;)

40hz

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #16 on: September 17, 2015, 08:47:33 AM »
I like RAID5, it has server me well in the past. And I need the extra speed of the stripped NLSAS for the Hyper-V VMs, but wanted the safety net of parity also. Not to mention that I've seen these controllers do mirroring...performance is not impressive (read horrid). My workstation here at the office is (identical except for disk configuration) a single disk, which goes straight to its knees when I get a few VMs going, especially if one of them decides to pull something cute like indexing or updates. On the RAID5 array I had 3 VMs (Vista, 7, and 8.1) all doing updates at the same time, and the drive was still responsive.


Wow! When I first read that I said to myself: "Can that be right?"

Then I thought about everything I was routinely running multiple VMs on, and realized they were all server grade boxes with RAID5. And those few times when I invoked multiple VM instances on a single drive machine I too ran into exactly those issues you mentioned.

Never though of it in that context since you always hear how much of a performance drag (in theory) RAID5 can be. Even if that's mostly from the gaming SSD crowd.

But I never once thought of using RAID5 more as a response enhancer for VMs. Good thing I already was without knowing it. "Sometimes better lucky than smart," as my grandfather used to say. :Thmbsup:

MilesAhead

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #17 on: September 17, 2015, 10:56:48 AM »
"Sometimes better lucky than smart," as my grandfather used to say
If I had a grandfather he would probably have said to me:  "If you're so smart why can't you get lucky?"  :)


Deozaan

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #18 on: September 17, 2015, 03:42:15 PM »
Can someone explain to me how to get VMs to work using with that Hyper-V stuff?

I had plenty of VMs working just fine using VirtualBox in Windows 7 x64, but once I updated to Windows 10, none of my x64 VMs work anymore because the included Windows 10 Hyper-V thing is using some needed thing that VirtualBox can no longer get access to.

I've tried Googling for an answer but the only "solution" I've found is to no longer use x64 VMs, but rather to use the 32-bit versions instead. . .


MilesAhead

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #19 on: September 17, 2015, 04:38:47 PM »
Can someone explain to me how to get VMs to work using with that Hyper-V stuff?

I had plenty of VMs working just fine using VirtualBox in Windows 7 x64, but once I updated to Windows 10, none of my x64 VMs work anymore because the included Windows 10 Hyper-V thing is using some needed thing that VirtualBox can no longer get access to.

I've tried Googling for an answer but the only "solution" I've found is to no longer use x64 VMs, but rather to use the 32-bit versions instead. . .

I don't know if W10 is much different than W8(which is what I have.. W8.0 64 bit) in that regard.  I have had no problem creating x64 VMs using VMWare Player 7.x.  In fact if the iso image is a Windows DVD image it knows what to do right away.  All you should need to do is accept the defaults unless you wish to make the VM image file one contiguous file rather than expanding it dynamically as needed.  Once you have Windows installed then you want to install the VMWare Tools so you can drag and drop directly from the host OS desktop into the VM instead of copying files in via network etc..

Edit: They changed the product name and their site around so I cannot find a link to the free version.  But the free version is all you need. 

Edit2:  Also if you have the VM images and don't want to do all that work over again there may be a Box to Player converter on the VMWare site.


« Last Edit: September 17, 2015, 04:54:21 PM by MilesAhead »

Stoic Joker

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #20 on: September 17, 2015, 05:28:49 PM »
Can someone explain to me how to get VMs to work using with that Hyper-V stuff?

Can you give us a specific case scenario, with the errant behavior and error messages?

Some of the older stuff won't/can't function in/with Hyper-V ... But anything x64 should be fine. Have you done the install add-ons from the action menu of the VM?

Also sometimes for the transition you need to set the VM's OS to detect HAL (in msconfig) before moving it to get it to play nice with the new interpretation of the hardware.

f0dder

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #21 on: September 17, 2015, 05:46:47 PM »
And I need the extra speed of the stripped NLSAS for the Hyper-V VMs, but wanted the safety net of parity also. Not to mention that I've seen these controllers do mirroring...performance is not impressive (read horrid).
Weird - 3x1TB mirroing ought to perform better than RAID5 (for some workloads)... reads can be fully striped, even if writes have to go fully to all drives, but don't require the seek overhead of parity.

I don't care much about the non-Redundancy parts of RAID, though :)
- carpe noctem

Deozaan

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Re: New Computer
« Reply #22 on: September 18, 2015, 01:33:14 PM »
Can someone explain to me how to get VMs to work using with that Hyper-V stuff?
Can you give us a specific case scenario, with the errant behavior and error messages?

While searching to find the previous "solution" that didn't really solve anything for me, I found this bug report which almost exactly describes my issue:

I had several 64-bit guests (Ubuntu desktop, server, and Windows 2012 R2 server) that ran on my system (Windows 7 ultimate OS, i7 CPU w/16 GB RAM host) successfully with VBox 5.0. I upgraded to Windows 10 and everything broke. I am using VBox 5.0.3 test build now and have gotten my network adapters to work again, but now I'm seeing another issue that is preventing my VM's from running. I can not see a 64-bit guest OS listed as an option (Windows server 2012 isn't listed anymore). This is for my old VM's - they are still have that from when they were running on a Win 7 host but if you look at settings it tries to change it to a 32-bit guest OS and you don't have the option to select a 64-bit guest OS if you try to create a new VM. When I try to start any of my VM's I get an error message about no VT-x available:

Failed to open a session for the virtual machine Anduril.

VT-x is not available (VERR_VMX_NO_VMX).

Result Code: E_FAIL (0x80004005)
Component: ConsoleWrap
Interface: IConsole {872da645-4a9b-1727-bee2-5585105b9eed}

And at the bottom of the bug report was a suggested fix which worked for me:

VT-x is most likely not available because Hyper-V is enabled for some reason on your Windows 10 host. Try with

bcdedit /set hypervisorlaunchtype off

from a command prompt in Administrator mode.

All I had left to do was reboot, and now my 64-bit VMs work again! :Thmbsup: