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ThatFlashCat

Computer for grandparents

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Posted · Original PosterOP

My grandparents are finally deciding to get onto the internet and I have been delegated the task of finding something inexpensive but still functional for them. I've built many computers but honestly do not know where to start with budget devices. I know the most they'll be doing is streaming a church service and accessing email, so they don't need a powerful device. Still, I want something with an ssd (or something that I can swap an ssd into) for fast boot times. My initial thought was a chromebook but I want to be able to remotely control it over VNC in case they have any questions. Perhaps a cheap windows 10 laptop like this would work?

 

Edit: forgot the link: https://www.microcenter.com/product/513581/inspiron-15-3567-156-laptop-computer---black


PC Specs:

CPU: AMD 1700x Cooler: Corsair H100i V2 Motherboard: Asus Crosshair VI Hero RAM: 2 * 8GB G.Skill RGB DDR4 Graphics: EVGA GTX 1080 Ti SC2 Storage: Samsung 960 EVO 500GB Case: Fractal Design Meshify C PSU: EVGA 750w G3 Monitors: Dell SG2716DG +  2x Dell U2515H

 

Freenas specs:

CPU: Intel Xeon E5-2650 V2 Cooler: Some noctua cooler Motherboard: Supermicro X9 SRL-F RAM: 8 * 8GB Samsung DDR3 ECC Storage: 6 * 4TB Seagate 7200 RPM RAIDZ2 Controller: LSI H220 Case: Phanteks Enthoo Pro PSU: EVGA 650w G3

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does it have to be a laptop?

I think chromebooks can be controlled remotely:
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/chrome-remote-desktop/gbchcmhmhahfdphkhkmpfmihenigjmpp


i7 3770k @ 1.3v 4.0GHz | 2x8GB CAS9 1600MHz | Radeon VII | ASUS P8Z77-V LE | 6TB WD Gold (128MB Cache, 2017)

Samsung 850 EVO 240 GB 

138 is a good number.

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP
Just now, themctipers said:

does it have to be a laptop?

I think chromebooks can be controlled remotely:
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/chrome-remote-desktop/gbchcmhmhahfdphkhkmpfmihenigjmpp

A laptop would be most convenient, yes. I was not aware of that, thanks.


PC Specs:

CPU: AMD 1700x Cooler: Corsair H100i V2 Motherboard: Asus Crosshair VI Hero RAM: 2 * 8GB G.Skill RGB DDR4 Graphics: EVGA GTX 1080 Ti SC2 Storage: Samsung 960 EVO 500GB Case: Fractal Design Meshify C PSU: EVGA 750w G3 Monitors: Dell SG2716DG +  2x Dell U2515H

 

Freenas specs:

CPU: Intel Xeon E5-2650 V2 Cooler: Some noctua cooler Motherboard: Supermicro X9 SRL-F RAM: 8 * 8GB Samsung DDR3 ECC Storage: 6 * 4TB Seagate 7200 RPM RAIDZ2 Controller: LSI H220 Case: Phanteks Enthoo Pro PSU: EVGA 650w G3

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Are they specifically looking for laptops? Why not a desktop which can be easily configured and used by both them and easily logged into by you? 

 

I'm thinking the b*tch tier Mac Mini. Lets face it Windows 10 is not grand parent friendly, macOS Mojave is very grandparent friendly.  


Laptop: 2016 13" nTB MacBook Pro Core i5 | Phone: iPhone 6s Plus 64GB Wearables: Apple Watch Sport Series 2 CPU: R5 2600 | Mobo: ASRock B450M Pro4 | RAM: 8GB 2666 | GPU: Sapphire Nitro+ RX 580 4GB | Case: Apple PowerMac G5 | OS: Win 10 | Storage: 480GB PNY SSD & 2TB WD Green HDD | PSU: Corsair CX600M | Display: Dell UZ2215H 21.5" 1080p, ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED 23.6" 1080p, Samsung SyncMaster 940BX 19" 1024p | Cooling: Wraith Prism | Keyboard: G610 Orion Cherry MX Brown | Mouse: G303 | Audio: Audio Technica ATH-M50X & Blue Snowball

 

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4 minutes ago, DrMacintosh said:

Are they specifically looking for laptops? Why not a desktop which can be easily configured and used by both them and easily logged into by you? 

 

I'm thinking the b*tch tier Mac Mini. Lets face it Windows 10 is not grand parent friendly, macOS Mojave is very grandparent friendly.  

troubleshooting mac problems as a mainly windows user is a pain in the ass, as the things you expect aren't there/true

 


i7 3770k @ 1.3v 4.0GHz | 2x8GB CAS9 1600MHz | Radeon VII | ASUS P8Z77-V LE | 6TB WD Gold (128MB Cache, 2017)

Samsung 850 EVO 240 GB 

138 is a good number.

 

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2 minutes ago, themctipers said:

troubleshooting mac problems as a mainly windows user is a pain in the ass, as the things you expect aren't there/true

 

That’s the thing, macOS is very set it and forget it. Especially since you can straight up disable updates. 

 

But that is true. Then again wouldn’t the same logic apply to a ChromeBook? 


Laptop: 2016 13" nTB MacBook Pro Core i5 | Phone: iPhone 6s Plus 64GB Wearables: Apple Watch Sport Series 2 CPU: R5 2600 | Mobo: ASRock B450M Pro4 | RAM: 8GB 2666 | GPU: Sapphire Nitro+ RX 580 4GB | Case: Apple PowerMac G5 | OS: Win 10 | Storage: 480GB PNY SSD & 2TB WD Green HDD | PSU: Corsair CX600M | Display: Dell UZ2215H 21.5" 1080p, ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED 23.6" 1080p, Samsung SyncMaster 940BX 19" 1024p | Cooling: Wraith Prism | Keyboard: G610 Orion Cherry MX Brown | Mouse: G303 | Audio: Audio Technica ATH-M50X & Blue Snowball

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP
2 minutes ago, DrMacintosh said:

Are they specifically looking for laptops? Why not a desktop which can be easily configured and used by both them and easily logged into by you? 

 

I'm thinking the b*tch tier Mac Mini. Lets face it Windows 10 is not grand parent friendly, macOS Mojave is very grandparent friendly.  

They don't have a good place for a desktop and I see them using it at their kitchen table, so definitely a laptop. And yes, windows 10 isn't super friendly but I've never used macos myself, and mac minis start at $800...


PC Specs:

CPU: AMD 1700x Cooler: Corsair H100i V2 Motherboard: Asus Crosshair VI Hero RAM: 2 * 8GB G.Skill RGB DDR4 Graphics: EVGA GTX 1080 Ti SC2 Storage: Samsung 960 EVO 500GB Case: Fractal Design Meshify C PSU: EVGA 750w G3 Monitors: Dell SG2716DG +  2x Dell U2515H

 

Freenas specs:

CPU: Intel Xeon E5-2650 V2 Cooler: Some noctua cooler Motherboard: Supermicro X9 SRL-F RAM: 8 * 8GB Samsung DDR3 ECC Storage: 6 * 4TB Seagate 7200 RPM RAIDZ2 Controller: LSI H220 Case: Phanteks Enthoo Pro PSU: EVGA 650w G3

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Just now, DrMacintosh said:

That’s the thing, macOS is very set it and forget it. Especially since you can straight up disable updates. 

 

But that is true. Then again wouldn’t the same logic apply to a ChromeBook? 

because it's literally just a laptop running chrome


i7 3770k @ 1.3v 4.0GHz | 2x8GB CAS9 1600MHz | Radeon VII | ASUS P8Z77-V LE | 6TB WD Gold (128MB Cache, 2017)

Samsung 850 EVO 240 GB 

138 is a good number.

 

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5 minutes ago, DrMacintosh said:

That’s the thing, macOS is very set it and forget it. Especially since you can straight up disable updates. 

 

But that is true. Then again wouldn’t the same logic apply to a ChromeBook? 

No, about any one could figure out a Chromebook. My dad is in his 60s and easily mastered Chrome OS, as there really isnt any type of advanced settings. The hardest part of using a Chromebook is setting up a Google account. After that its a breeze. Where as Windows and MacOS are much more advanced OS's and in some cases decisions have to be made that can cause issues for usability and or security of the device. Chrome OS auto updates and really has nothing you have to make a decision about as everything runs in the cloud. 


You ever notice that many establishments have a sign that as "No Shirt, No Shoes, No service"? They never say anything about pants............ You know what that implies. You dont have to wear pants. 

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19 minutes ago, DrMacintosh said:

I'm thinking the b*tch tier Mac Mini. Lets face it Windows 10 is not grand parent friendly, macOS Mojave is very grandparent friendly.

At that rate they should get just get a Chromebook.


My "Amazing" Guide to Getting a Free Computer:  https://linustechtips.com/main/topic/1037246-hitch-hikers-guide-to-pc-dumpster-diving/

PC 1:

CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 1800X    GPU: EVGA Superclocked GeForce GTX 1080

RAM: 2x8GB Corsair Vengeance LPX 3000MHz DDR4    SSD: Crucial MX500 500GB

PSU: Corsair CX750M V2   HDD: Seagate Barracuda Compute 3TB 7200RPM

Case: Phanteks Eclipse P400STG Red/Black   MOBO: ASRock X370 Killer SLI/ac

OS: Windows 10 Pro  Keyboard:  Corsair K68 Red  Mouse:  Corsair M65 Pro RGB

 

PC 2:

CPU: Intel Core i7 3770    GPU: Sapphire PULSE Radeon RX 580 8GB

RAM: 1x8GB Adata 1600MHz DDR3    HDD: Seagate Barracuda 500GB 7200RPM

PSU: Corsair VS450     Case: NZXT H440 Red/Black

MOBO: Intel BOXDH77EB H77    OS: Windows 10 Home

Keyboard:  Rii RK100  Mouse:  Rosewill Fusion C40

 

LINUX:

CPU: Intel Pentium E5400   GPU: Intel 82G41 Chipset

RAM: 1x2GB Kingston 1066MHz DDR3    HDD: Seagate Barracuda 250GB 7200RPM

PSU: Sparkle-Power 300W     Case: Nobilis Micro ATX OEM

MOBO: Intel DG41WV 775   OS: Ubuntu LTS 18.04

Keyboard:  Apple A1048  Mouse:  Rosewill Fusion C40

 

MAC:

CPU: Intel Core i7 3615QM    GPU: Intel HD4000

RAM: 2x2GB Crucial 1600MHz DDR3    HDD: WD 1TB 5400RPM

PSU: Mac Mini PSU    Case: Mac Mini Case

MOBO: Mac Mini Motherboard    OS: macOS "Mojave"

Keyboard:  Apple MB110LL/A   Mouse:  Logitech M325

 

Consoles: Wii, SNES, NES, N64, Atari 7800, Commodore VIC-20, Genesis, Dreamcast, PS1, PS2, 2DS, Steam Link, and GBA

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Well, if all they want to do is websurf, I would pick a Unix like operating system. I know that makes it somewhat harder for you to maintain it for them, but it's significantly more grandparent proof.

My grandma uses Win 10, and I am constantly having to remove all sorts of garbage that she's downloaded, installed, or clicked "yes" on. Her uses (mainly genealogy) actually do require her to be able to download things and applications from time to time, so I can't just turn off that privilege.


Teacher: Does anyone have a thin ruler?

Students: No.

Teacher: Ok. Does anyone have a nail file.

Students: Why do you need a nail file?
Teacher: I have a staple I need to remove.

Student: Oh. I have a staple remover...

 

People don't want power drills, they want holes.

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Yes a laptop would be very convinient, as they can move it around when they need to.

Celeron / Atom / Pentium would be just fine. a 2200u would be nicer.

with 4gb minimum, ssd is not needed, Just make sure its not a rubbish MMC storage.

The laptop would be faster than they could click the mouse (just kidding).

A chromebook need internet to work, can they setup a proper internet connections without you?

28 minutes ago, DrMacintosh said:

I'm thinking the b*tch tier Mac Mini. Lets face it Windows 10 is not grand parent friendly, macOS Mojave is very grandparent friendly.  

Just save their favorite programs in the taskbar, just like in macos. OS is just the platform, you still need to learn the basic.

 

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2 minutes ago, straight_stewie said:

My grandma uses Win 10, and I am constantly having to remove all sorts of garbage that she's downloaded, installed, or clicked "yes" on. Her uses (mainly genealogy) actually do require her to be able to download things and applications from time to time, so I can't just turn off that privilege.

You can get her a non administrative account with installing priviledge disabled.

When it is time to install something you can use remote desktop to assist her (i assume this is not often).

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42 minutes ago, themctipers said:

because it's literally just a laptop running chrome

There's a lot more to chromeOS than meets the eye

 


Pro tip, before you reply to an question or topic, answer these three questions:

 

1) Do I actually have an answer for OP at all?

2) Am I giving an answer that is based in multiple reliable source tests and not personal opinion or heresay?

3) Is my answer on topic, clear and concise?

 

If you answered "no" to any of those, close the tab.

Do not give people information you personally think is correct. Source, research and then reply. If you plain and simple don't know what you're talking about, don't talk about it. It's harmful to support questions on forums to be providing people with wrong or misleading information. As well as going off topic from the original question.

i.e. "What B360 motherboard should I buy?"

>someone replies with a PC partpicker list with a ryzen system

Not what was asked.

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My 90~ year old grandparents have a dell desktop with an older i5. It’s good for email & watching online shows/checking sport scores

 

my other 70~ year old grandparent has an iPad mini & iPhone. 


LTT Fan Fiction:

PC game list: 

 

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I'd definitely go with a Chromebook!

Chromebooks provide great performance for very cheap, the simplistic OS is easy to navigate and secure, the Google Play Store provides easy access to plenty of apps, the entire system runs extremely fast, and the online experience is at least as good as a Windows device.

The only reason to go with a PC would be the necessity to run system intensive programs.

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Posted (edited) · Original PosterOP
10 minutes ago, AqHu said:

I'd definitely go with a Chromebook!

Chromebooks provide great performance for very cheap, the simplistic OS is easy to navigate and secure, the Google Play Store provides easy access to plenty of apps, the entire system runs extremely fast, and the online experience is at least as good as a Windows device.

The only reason to go with a PC would be the necessity to run system intensive programs.

I'm leaning toward a chromebook at this point. Does the remote control allow the entire screen to be shown or just a tab? And does it work like VNC in that both the remote control user and local user can see the screen?

 

Edit: Any recommended models for this usage? They don’t need a flashy chromebook either.

Edited by ThatFlashCat

PC Specs:

CPU: AMD 1700x Cooler: Corsair H100i V2 Motherboard: Asus Crosshair VI Hero RAM: 2 * 8GB G.Skill RGB DDR4 Graphics: EVGA GTX 1080 Ti SC2 Storage: Samsung 960 EVO 500GB Case: Fractal Design Meshify C PSU: EVGA 750w G3 Monitors: Dell SG2716DG +  2x Dell U2515H

 

Freenas specs:

CPU: Intel Xeon E5-2650 V2 Cooler: Some noctua cooler Motherboard: Supermicro X9 SRL-F RAM: 8 * 8GB Samsung DDR3 ECC Storage: 6 * 4TB Seagate 7200 RPM RAIDZ2 Controller: LSI H220 Case: Phanteks Enthoo Pro PSU: EVGA 650w G3

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2 hours ago, ThatFlashCat said:

I'm leaning toward a chromebook at this point. Does the remote control allow the entire screen to be shown or just a tab? And does it work like VNC in that both the remote control user and local user can see the screen?

 

Edit: Any recommended models for this usage? They don’t need a flashy chromebook either.

You'll be able to see the entire screen and you'll have full control of the Chromebook, including removing or adding apps and viewing the file system.

Here's an article that should prove helpful: https://www.groovypost.com/howto/remotely-connect-chromebook-windows-10/

 

As far as choosing a model goes, just go with the cheapest device that meets your requirements that's from a reputable brand. Even a low-end Chromebook will provide more than adequate performance for web-browsing. Also, feel free to go with a manufacturer refurbished model to save money; it should still come with the full warranty and customer support, so you don't really lose anything.

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7 hours ago, campy said:

There's a lot more to chromeOS than meets the eye

 

I've used it before, but you can't possibly fuck it to the point of it's unusable 


i7 3770k @ 1.3v 4.0GHz | 2x8GB CAS9 1600MHz | Radeon VII | ASUS P8Z77-V LE | 6TB WD Gold (128MB Cache, 2017)

Samsung 850 EVO 240 GB 

138 is a good number.

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

How about this? It's only got a Celeron and 4GB of RAM but that should be plenty for chrome OS. As long as they can stream video on it it can do everything they need it to: https://www.google.com/chromebook/device/asus-chromebook-c423/


PC Specs:

CPU: AMD 1700x Cooler: Corsair H100i V2 Motherboard: Asus Crosshair VI Hero RAM: 2 * 8GB G.Skill RGB DDR4 Graphics: EVGA GTX 1080 Ti SC2 Storage: Samsung 960 EVO 500GB Case: Fractal Design Meshify C PSU: EVGA 750w G3 Monitors: Dell SG2716DG +  2x Dell U2515H

 

Freenas specs:

CPU: Intel Xeon E5-2650 V2 Cooler: Some noctua cooler Motherboard: Supermicro X9 SRL-F RAM: 8 * 8GB Samsung DDR3 ECC Storage: 6 * 4TB Seagate 7200 RPM RAIDZ2 Controller: LSI H220 Case: Phanteks Enthoo Pro PSU: EVGA 650w G3

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1 minute ago, ThatFlashCat said:

How about this? It's only got a Celeron and 4GB of RAM but that should be plenty for chrome OS. As long as they can stream video on it it can do everything they need it to: https://www.google.com/chromebook/device/asus-chromebook-c423/

I think its way to much $$$ for what it is.  Id get them a refurbished system imho, from somewhere like Newegg.


Space Heater: ASUS M5A99FX PRO r2.0, AMD FX-8350, Sapphire R9 Fury Tri-X Nitro 4gb HBM, 16gb (4x4) Corsair Vengeance DDR3, Corsair HX850 PSU, Corsair H100i GTX 240mm AIO cooler, 500gb Samsung 840 EVO SSD, CoolerMaster HAF XM Case

Ryzen Rig: ASUS B350-PRIME, Ryzen 7 1700, Sapphire R9 Fury Tri-X Nitro 4gb HBM, 16gb (2x8) Patriot Viper DDR4 2133, ANTEC Earthwatts 750w PSU, MasterLiquid Lite 120 AIO cooler in Push/Pull config as rear exhaust, 250gb Samsung 850 Evo SSD, Patriot Burst 240gb SSD, 640gb WD Blue 7200 RPM Mech drive, Rosewill Nautilus 1.0 Case

Media Center: HP Pro 6300 MT, i5-3470, Sapphire HD 7750 1gb GPU, 8 gb (4x2) Gskill Ripjaws DDR3, Lite On 320w PSU, Stock HP Cooler, 60gb Patriot SSD boot drive, 1tb WD 7200 RPM Mechanical drive, 500gb Toshiba 7200 RPM Mech Drive with Win 7, Rosewill 4x External 1x Internal USB PCI hub, ASUS AC55BT wifi adapter, LG Blu Ray/M-Disc/DVD/CD Player/Burner, LG DVD/CD Player/Burner, 3.5" Media Card Reader (about to do a complete overhaul on the HTPC, build post incoming....loop, GPU upgrade etc!)

Micro Form Factor Dell OptiPlex 3040: Dell 0MGK50 A02, i3-6100T, 4gb DDR3 1600, Team Group 120gb SSD, Windows 10 Pro, Logitech K400+

 

A couple laptops and tablets around the house

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2 minutes ago, ThatFlashCat said:

How about this? It's only got a Celeron and 4GB of RAM but that should be plenty for chrome OS. As long as they can stream video on it it can do everything they need it to: https://www.google.com/chromebook/device/asus-chromebook-c423/

Heres an i5 4th gen for WAY cheaper - 8gb of ram, SSD, Windows 10

 

https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834269757&ignorebbr=1


Space Heater: ASUS M5A99FX PRO r2.0, AMD FX-8350, Sapphire R9 Fury Tri-X Nitro 4gb HBM, 16gb (4x4) Corsair Vengeance DDR3, Corsair HX850 PSU, Corsair H100i GTX 240mm AIO cooler, 500gb Samsung 840 EVO SSD, CoolerMaster HAF XM Case

Ryzen Rig: ASUS B350-PRIME, Ryzen 7 1700, Sapphire R9 Fury Tri-X Nitro 4gb HBM, 16gb (2x8) Patriot Viper DDR4 2133, ANTEC Earthwatts 750w PSU, MasterLiquid Lite 120 AIO cooler in Push/Pull config as rear exhaust, 250gb Samsung 850 Evo SSD, Patriot Burst 240gb SSD, 640gb WD Blue 7200 RPM Mech drive, Rosewill Nautilus 1.0 Case

Media Center: HP Pro 6300 MT, i5-3470, Sapphire HD 7750 1gb GPU, 8 gb (4x2) Gskill Ripjaws DDR3, Lite On 320w PSU, Stock HP Cooler, 60gb Patriot SSD boot drive, 1tb WD 7200 RPM Mechanical drive, 500gb Toshiba 7200 RPM Mech Drive with Win 7, Rosewill 4x External 1x Internal USB PCI hub, ASUS AC55BT wifi adapter, LG Blu Ray/M-Disc/DVD/CD Player/Burner, LG DVD/CD Player/Burner, 3.5" Media Card Reader (about to do a complete overhaul on the HTPC, build post incoming....loop, GPU upgrade etc!)

Micro Form Factor Dell OptiPlex 3040: Dell 0MGK50 A02, i3-6100T, 4gb DDR3 1600, Team Group 120gb SSD, Windows 10 Pro, Logitech K400+

 

A couple laptops and tablets around the house

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Posted (edited) · Original PosterOP
6 minutes ago, Tristerin said:

Heres an i5 4th gen for WAY cheaper - 8gb of ram, SSD, Windows 10

 

https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834269757&ignorebbr=1

On some level I like the easy to use nature of Chrome OS and it's far harder for them to break it. :P Still, chromebooks seem rather overpriced...

 

Edit: I also don't want to get an old 4th gen chip now since they will keep this device for a while.

Edited by ThatFlashCat

PC Specs:

CPU: AMD 1700x Cooler: Corsair H100i V2 Motherboard: Asus Crosshair VI Hero RAM: 2 * 8GB G.Skill RGB DDR4 Graphics: EVGA GTX 1080 Ti SC2 Storage: Samsung 960 EVO 500GB Case: Fractal Design Meshify C PSU: EVGA 750w G3 Monitors: Dell SG2716DG +  2x Dell U2515H

 

Freenas specs:

CPU: Intel Xeon E5-2650 V2 Cooler: Some noctua cooler Motherboard: Supermicro X9 SRL-F RAM: 8 * 8GB Samsung DDR3 ECC Storage: 6 * 4TB Seagate 7200 RPM RAIDZ2 Controller: LSI H220 Case: Phanteks Enthoo Pro PSU: EVGA 650w G3

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