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Old 06-03-2015, 02:17 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Location: Canada
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Default Used Server

I'm in the process of buying a off lease server I'm currently considering between a tower or a rack server. Below are my current considerations which I sourced from this web site Canada Server Store. My primary use for this server will be to run Cisco VIRL
As a guide, following are the general memory requirements for supported virtual images:
- Virtual Cisco IOS Software requires 512 MB of memory to run each node.
- Cisco CSR 1000V requires 3 GB of memory to run each.
- Cisco IOS XRv Software requires 3 GB of memory to run each node.
- Cisco NX-IOS Software requires appox 4 GM of memory to run each node.

Dell Precision T7500 WorkStation $500
Intel Xeon Quad Core 2.66Ghz
Intel X5550 Processor 8MB L3 Smart Cache
DVD Burner Drive
24Gig DDR3 RAM (Support up to 192Gb RAM) 6 X 4GB
1Tb 7.2K SATA 3.5" Hard Drive
nVidia Quadro FX580 Video Card
DVD Drive
2 X Gigabit Network 10/100/1000
Full Size 4U Tower machine

Dell PowerEdge 2950 III Server $500
2 X Intel Xeon Quad Core 3.0Ghz E5450
32GB RAM DDR2 PC5300
2 X 1Tb 7.2K SATA Hard Drives
2 X Gigabit Network 10/100/1000
2 X Redundant Power Supplies
2U Rackmount Size

I'm a newbie when it comes to server hardware so any help will be greatly appreciated.

Danny Best

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Old 06-10-2015, 06:04 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Used Server

Less from a server hardware, and more from a general perspective on PC spec, year etc...

Arguments FOR the Precision T7500:
More modern CPU
CPU has a higher benchmark score
More modern RAM (more easily upgradeable)
Workstation graphics card to help with graphics (potentially you could sell this if the board has an integrated display chip, you can then use the money to buy RAM and maybe redundant power supplies?)

Arguments FOR the PowerEdge 2950:
More RAM
Higher HDD capacity (you could raid the 2 HDDs for extra redundancy)
Redundant Power Supplies (backup power if the power supply fails)

Key Points:
The Precision T7500 is a FULL TOWER case, whereas the PowerEdge is a rackmount, so it depends on your size/storage requirements for the server.

Personally I'd feel inclined to go for the top one with the more modern board, upgrade the RAM (if required, only upgrade if you next the extra memory), sell the Quadro card (unless you're doing graphical rendering etc), consider buying a UPS (and/or redundant power supply), and potentially buying and installing another HDD so they can be put into RAID for redundancy.

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Old 06-10-2015, 09:28 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Used Server

Many thanks for your sound advice and as you have pointed out I won't be needing the Quadro card for my purpose so it could be sold separately to acquire a UPS or more memory.

Again I really appreciate the feedback!

Danny Best
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Old 06-10-2015, 01:31 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Used Server

Go with the T7500 Workstation, memory is easily obtainable on Ebay/Amazon and the such, and it's a fairly reliable workstation provided you have a cool room. Just remember, there are memory riser cards used in those workstations typically to get the 192GB of RAM in, if it doesn't have those riser cards, your going to have a hard time getting the RAM you may need in the future.
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