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Add additional processor windows sbs2003

Posted on 2010-08-13
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
I have a client with a  new Dell server running Windows small business server 2003. My question is I want to upgrade the processor, because currently it only has one processor and can actually have two. Will I have to reinstall Windows small business server 2003, or will it recognize the additional processor for a total of two processors without crashing on me.
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Question by:Houston Blancett
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pcrepeau50 earned 1000 total points
ID: 33431946
Server 2003 (all flavors) has a multiple processor HAL present when you install it.  What this means is that as you add processors, it will automatically detect and make use of them without having to re-install the OS.  you may need to reboot after it detects the new hardware for the OS to make full use of the new hardware, but you should not have to install the Os all over again.
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 33432340
Not entirely correct, though the end result MAY be correct.

Server 2003 (and SBS 2003) loads EITHER single processor or MULTI-Processor support out of the box, depending on what you have.  That said, IF the server has a single processor AND EITHER HyperThreading OR multiple cores (or both), then it loads the multiprocessor support.  IF the processor is neither hyperthreaded nor multi-core, then it loads uniprocessor support.  Multi-processor support SHOULD work on a single CPU without either Hyperthreading or multi-core and in Windows 2008 R2 (and I THINK 2008) Microsoft doesn't even have a uniprocessor kernel anymore - the "optimizations" were just so minor it wasn't worth having it, especially with most processors being multicore.

IF you have the uniprocessor kernel loaded, you CAN upgrade the processor by simply updating the processor driver.  I DO NOT RECALL if this is "detected" or not - in 2000, I believe you had to manually tell it to update the driver, but 2003 may be different.  
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by:pcrepeau50
ID: 33432381
In 2000 you definitely had to tell it to add multiprocessor support.  2003 picks up on it unless you are running older Pentium or Pentuium II processors.
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Author Comment

by:Houston Blancett
ID: 33432785
These  procressors are an Intel E5506 2.13ghz.
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by:Lee W, MVP
Lee W, MVP earned 1000 total points
ID: 33432891
According to
http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=37096
You have Quad Cores in those processors - so the multiprocessor kernel is loaded and in use.  Just add the CPU - I wouldn't expect any problems - that said, ALWAYS make a backup first.
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 33432920
Although, I will say, you are ALMOST CERTAINLY wasting your client's money.  This is SBS 2003, right?  Have you even looked at the processor load?  you have FOUR CORES NOW!  You CAN add another CPU, but WHY?  Just because it can take it is a VERY POOR reason.  If you want to spend money, spend it on RAM... of course, that won't do any good because you're running SBS 2003 which is limited to 4 GB of RAM... So... spend it on the upgrade to 2008.  Besides, if you're looking for billable time, THAT'S where the money is... not in a 5 minute CPU upgrade (ok, 30 minute when you factor in shutdown and startup time).
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Author Comment

by:Houston Blancett
ID: 33433171
Next time before you go off on a rant,  you should get all the facts. First off this is a church and my time is FREE to them. Second, again FREE,  I'm getting ready to upgrade them to server 2008 and ram
Is bring bounced up to 8 gigs. So don't tell me I'm wasting my clients money. I'll make sure they have what they need.  I'm just making sure they have all resources that are available.
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 33433286
>Next time before you go off on a rant, you should get all the facts.
Next time you ask a question, you should provide all the facts.  Why do you think I said ALMOST CERTAINLY...

If you're getting ready to upgrade them, why are you even worried about 2003 and adding a processor - add it when you install 2008 - you have to do a clean install anyway.

Great, you're time is free to the church... is it worthless to you personally? ... is the CPU free?  Before you go spending money that isn't yours - unless you're looking for a tax deductible donation and are going to buy this yourself, you should understand that processors are RARELY the bottleneck in Small Business Servers.  I'm not saying it can't happen, but misunderstanding the requirements of the product and it's users can cost you and/or your clients needlessly.  

RAM is FAR more important than CPU.  If you're only going to 8 GB with SBS 2008, then you must have a small network... You don't need a ratio of 2 users per 1 core or better - which is what you'd have if the user base is appropriate for 8 GB of RAM.  That's just wasteful.  If you want better performance on this server than upgrade the RAM - Max it out - before you upgrade/add CPUs.

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