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Using a server as a gaming rig?

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by ObSo-1337, Sep 20, 2011.

  1. ObSo-1337

    ObSo-1337 New Member

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    Just a quick question TPU. My friend from college got his hands on a server from a company that was going out of business. As far as he knows, it has an intel quad core processor and four gigabytes of RAM. Is there any physically/logical limitations that would stop me from using it as a gaming rig before I think of buying it off of him?

    Cheers :)
     
  2. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    It could technically work, but you would need a decent graphics card in there. You may need a sound card too.

    Also, not all software installs on a server OS, because they impose licensing restrictions.

    Please give us the make and model of this server, so we have a better idea of its spec and what it's generally capable of.
     
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  3. ObSo-1337

    ObSo-1337 New Member

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    Ahhh ok. I see. I don't have that information but i just wanted to know if it was possible. I have a spare graphics card and sound card somewhere so i should be ok. Thanks :)
     
  4. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    Be sure that the PSU is capable enough too. Those servers have different design targets from a regular PC.

    If you can get us those details (no rush) and your graphics card model, the community here will be happy to weigh in with lots of useful advice and prevent any potential pitfalls.
     
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  5. repman244

    repman244

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    Do you know what server model is it? I have windows 7 on my DL380 G5 and everything runs with no problems at all.
    The problem is there probably are no power connectors for a graphic card (PCI-E power connectors...), I had to solder some wires directly to the PSU to get mine working.

    EDIT: the problem could also be that there is no x16 PCI-E slot (Physical).
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2011
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  6. micropage7

    micropage7

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    wow server?
    i remember couples years ago when many boards using double socket to push the performance
     
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  7. Completely Bonkers New Member

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    Get the details of this "server". Post them up, so we can all make more informed comments.

    I have a PC that is based on an ASUS mainboard designed for servers and/or workstations with 2x s771. These things are very nice, and very solid, but they are specced differently. E.g. more PCI sockets, less PCIe sockets. Expensive and slower RAM but with error correction and hot swap, far too many SATA and RAID connections and no sound card!

    I wouldnt recommend BUILDING a gaming PC using a server platform. But if you HAVE ALREADY GOT a server platform, it should run games fine, so long as you can get a decent GPU in there.

    WATCH OUT for software and hardware driver compatibility. Running Windows 2K0 or 2K3 is one thing. Finding drivers to run W7 is something else. W2K3 will max at DX9.
     
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  8. Derek12

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    In my experience, the only server I saw was a HP Proliant ML350 g1, only had PCIe x8 besides PCI-x, was very noisy, bulky, had a ATI Rage graphics (lol), took ages to boot, and I don't know if Windows 7 is compatible (I didn't tried, though).

    but was very powerful with 2x Xeon CPUs.
     
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  9. repman244

    repman244

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    I don't think it would be a problem, since he said it has a quad core CPU (which means it isn't that old) so Windows 7 should work there with no problems. Drivers for Windows Server 2008 R2 usually work with win 7.


    The only serious problem there could be is that it doesn't have a PCI-E x16 slot and if it's a 2U size it probably won't have any cables for powering the card (PSU's are usually directly connected to the MB).

    Also, I doubt you will like the noise these things produce.
     
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  10. Red_Machine

    Red_Machine

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    This reminds me of those guys on eBay who sell retired servers as "ultimate gaming rigs" and all they have is dual Pentium 4-class Xeons, a load of slow RAM and a shitty Quadro card.

    Make sure you know what you're getting before you buy it. You could be getting a lemon.
     
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  11. ObSo-1337

    ObSo-1337 New Member

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    Thanks for all the replies guys! I will give you the details tomorrow. I'm going over to see it. He said he would give me it for £75 (which is an absolute steal imo) Thanks again! :)
     
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  12. FordGT90Concept

    FordGT90Concept "I go fast!1!11!1!"

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    Heh, it could be a Via QuadCore. :roll:
     
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  13. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    I tell you what, for £75 it might be worth it even if it's no good for gaming. It might have a decent CPU and you might be able to use it for other tasks.

    Definitely get us that make and model number! :toast:
     
  14. tigger

    tigger I'm the only one

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    I say we wants piccies, yes we does.
     
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  15. Frick

    Frick Fishfaced Nincompoop

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    That would be pretty awesome actually.
     
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  16. mrw1986

    mrw1986

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    I'm in the same boat as the op...I have a chance to get a Dell server that's a dual quadcore Xeon, 16gb RAM, the whole nine yards. I was thinking about just putting my GTX280 in it and rockin' it for games. My only concern is I don't think I'll be able to OC the CPU's (they run at like 2.6ghz or something) because of the motherboard.

    I wouldn't have to pay anything for the server because my dad would be giving it to me. Long story short he bought a couple pallets worth of Dell computer stuff from a business and almost all of it was brand new with the exception of a few of the workstations. He already made his money back selling a few of the things such as a dual quadcore Xeon, 16gb RAM, workstation and a couple laptops.

    Would this server be more viable than my current rig in my specs for gaming? Or would the low clock speed compared to what I run slow me down. I know the dual chips won't mean crap in games, but I also encode movies and what not.
     
  17. brandonwh64

    brandonwh64 Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!

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    Specs and pictures of the inside!
     
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  18. repman244

    repman244

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    OC is out of the question when talking about servers. It wouldn't be better in terms of gaming (because of the CPU freq. and slower RAM) but it would be a beast for rendering and such where you can use all of the 8 cores (or if you use a lot of VM's).
    Only way to get higher clocked CPU is by getting a higher clocked CPU which costs a lot.

    Noise is also an issue, these things are really loud and produce a lot of heat.

    Also if the server is 2U of height the PSU is probably hot-plug and there are no cables to power your card, you can get away with some sort of mod (soldering wires directly to the PSU like I did with mine).

    If you can get it for free, well get it :)

    Also, what model is it?
     
  19. mrw1986

    mrw1986

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    I don't remember the specifics of it, but I know it's actually not a loud or hot server. It's actually currently running right now at one of my dad's clients. He's using it in the meantime as a PC because his main one died. It sit's in a case that's a little smaller than a full tower but bigger than a mid tower.

    EDIT: Looking through my email I found it. It's a Dell Poweredge 1900.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2011
  20. repman244

    repman244

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    Then it's a 4U case (explains why it's a little cooler :)), then I think the cabling shouldn't be a problem. The one I'm using is 2U with 12 fans which explains the noise :laugh:
     
  21. Sinzia

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    I do love the look of most 4u rackmount cases, almost as good as the pedestal units.
     
  22. brandonwh64

    brandonwh64 Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!

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    I have a 2U server on my desk right now, It is slow (E5200 Dual Core, 4GB DDR2) and not really good for gaming. It does have a PCIex x16 2.0 slot but Would have to be a low profile card.
     
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  23. mrw1986

    mrw1986

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    I couldn't find the exact Dell order number from it, but it's pretty much the highest end configuration of the unit. We sold one of the workstations with comparable specs for about $1600 about 6 months ago. They even have the nice RAID cards in them (I can't remember if they have perc5/e or perc5/i in them).
     
  24. repman244

    repman244

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    [​IMG]

    I found this picture online, does it look anything close to it in the inside?

    If the MB is the same it has 2xPCI-X and 4xPCI-e (x8) and a special slot for the RAID controller (I think). If there isn't any other configuration of the slots than I guess there isn't much chance you will get a graphics card to work there.
    The only option which doesn't always work is to cut the PCI-e slot to fit a x16 card in there. But it may not work.
    I tried that with my ML350G4 it wouldn't even post.
     
  25. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    it will work, but odds are slower than a gaming PC.


    people seem to think servers are godly fast uber machines, but truth is they're slower than gaming systems - they're just designed for 24/7 stability, over speed.


    you could also run into problems with slots, it may not have PCI/PCI-E, and could be PCI-X and so on.
     
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