Difference between Server and Desktop Hardware

Discussion in 'hardware' started by jrmhng, Jun 8, 2008.

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  1. jrmhng

    jrmhng Registered Member

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    Hi all,

    I was wondering what the difference between desktop and server hardware on the x86 platform. For example, in Australia, a budget desktop mother board is < $100 but a server mother board is > $400. If you have worked as an IT professional, why are companies willing to fork out more for 'server' hardware? Are there significant reliability and scalability improvements? Do you get premium support from vendors with reduced turnaround times etc?
     
  2. markymoo

    markymoo Registered Member

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    A server motherboard will have benefits such as dual cpu, ECC fully buffered memory. Ultra320 SCSI, quality circuitry, higher bandwidth IO access. Yes it provides higher reliability. A decent desktop motherboard can be still be reliable and used for a demanding server but won't get the extra benefits i listed. SATA can be used instead of SCSI for the RAID.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2008
  3. jrmhng

    jrmhng Registered Member

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    If I want to build a desktop, is it worth using server parts?
     
  4. WSFuser

    WSFuser Registered Member

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    Unless you have good reason to use server parts, just use cheaper desktop parts.
     
  5. Hairy Coo

    Hairy Coo Registered Member

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    Unless you need a mobo with up to 4 CPUs and capacity of 12 memory sticks that costs $a1000 just for the board-or a dedicated hard disk that has an extended life expectancy-would say NO. :D

    Desktop hardware is plenty reliable,much cheaper and offers more than adequate reliability,plus performance with potential beyond most users.

    The average enthusiast likes to frequently update his hardware as technology advances eg replacing my HDDs after one year.

    The more you spend uneccessarily the less you would be inclined to update
     
  6. lucas1985

    lucas1985 Retired Moderator

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    For example, server motherboards use PCBs of 6-8 layers compared to 4-6 on desktop motherboards. This translates into better signal quality (less electrical interference)
    Premiun support is another reason of the higher cost of server gear.
    IMO, using server parts to build a desktop makes no sense in almost all cases.
     
  7. Meriadoc

    Meriadoc Registered Member

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    I agree with everything I've read but I've just added a little server to my setup a HP Prolient Xeon processor 4gig 2 HD 2 Ethernet cards at just £180 before tax :eek: So cheap I decided to add the 'lights out' remote server management hardware to it which cost as nearly as much as the server.
     
  8. jrmhng

    jrmhng Registered Member

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    Thanks for the responses guys. I will keep to the desktop parts.

    Another question though, if I want to build a 'workstation' machine where I will be running many programs at once (I tend to have a few instances of office, browser with 10 tabs on etc) rather than have 1 intensive process (such as a video game), what are the design features I should consider? Also are there any websites with relevant unbiased information on choosing hardware parts?

    Thanks
    Jeremy
     
  9. WSFuser

    WSFuser Registered Member

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    Just get plenty of ram for the programs and a multi-core processor and/or multiple processors.
     
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