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Need advice on replacement "server"

Posted on 2004-04-16
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We have 3 computers and a "server" Toshiba M500 that we use for storage and also as an occasional extra work station. The 3 PCs are Pentium 4 - 2.6 GHz , all running Win XP professional and the "server" is Pentium 2-10.2 GB running Win 98se.  I want to upgrade to a Dell PE400SC "server" with a 2.4 GHz processor (Celeron), run Win 2003 Small Business Standard Edition  and also use an external DVD for offsite storage. Is this 400SC a good choice to replace the Toshiba M500?
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Question by:Mary2214
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by:IceRaven
IceRaven earned 200 total points
ID: 10843433
Hi Mary2214,

I have about 20 DELL PE600SC's in the field.  They have been in place for approximately 12 months and I have not had one hardware failure.  I know the one I keep under my desk "Just in Case"  has really been put through it's paces.  I have never really thought about putting a Celeron in a server before. Thinking about it now... I would argue against it.  Win 2003 SBS and a Celeron... hmmm no thanks.  

It will only cost you $US99 to upgrade to a P4 chip.  Upgrade the CPU.  

Cheers,
Ice Raven
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by:parkerig
parkerig earned 250 total points
ID: 10844497
Mary2214,
For a server running SBS you need heaps of memory, heaps of disk space and a powerful cpu.
Of equal importance is decent tape backup software and tape backup unit. DVD is too slow and doesn't hold enough data to be of any real use for full backups. DVD is handy for offsite storage of DATA and copying files etc but you will need a decent tape backup system.
Obviously budget is of importance.
As the IT manager for a company of 120 staff, over time we have ended up spending more and more on servers and less on desktops - prices just keep dropping. You are making a huge change from win98se to Win 2003 Small Business Standard Edition.
Advice.
Doesn't matter too much on make and model ( I only ever use brand names though ( Dell, HP, Compaq, IBM ))
CPU 2.4 GHZ ( as IceRaven says go for P4 not celeron )
Memory - very important with SBS. Minimum 512 preferably 2 * 512 = 1024 megs
Hard Disks - 80 gig minimum ( Preferably get 2 * 80 so you can mirror )
Tape Backup Software - Arcserve with Disaster Recovery
Tape Backup Unit - DLT that can backup 80 gig ( all hard disk space on 1 tape )
Support is also very important. Don't buy off a supplier that hasn't got a team of technicians that can assist you.
As said "You are making a huge change from win98se to Win 2003 Small Business Standard Edition. "
Hope this helps a bit.
Ian.
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by:Mary2214
ID: 10844825
This is great advice from both experts. I will use the DVD for offsite storage only. Is there an option about the operating systems? Can I use Win XP?
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by:rid
rid earned 50 total points
ID: 10844887
If the network is only 3 nodes + the server, I guess you could manage very well with win2000 or XP Pro. Not XP Home. The 2003 option sounds like seriously expensive overkill.
/RID
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parkerig earned 250 total points
ID: 10844898
For the server I would stick with Win 2003 Small Business Standard Edition as it comes
with some wonderful new features - see url below
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/sbs/evaluation/overview/default.mspx

Also when one makes a big change it is good to know it will last a few years.

Cheers
Ian
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by:Mary2214
ID: 10845034
Thanks for your help.. Now I feel I can make an intelligent decision. Couldn't have done it without you.

Mary
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