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Sic0tiC

Have server - need suggestions

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Hey LTT people,

So i have a decent sized server i picked up a while back for $250 USD. I planned to use it as a file server but never put the time into setting it up properly as my house networking is really weird (Thanks to a big house #firstworldproblems) and had to be reworked as well. So i never bothered. However im sick of the server sitting there doing nothing and i want to use it. 

 

Specs : 

CPU - Intel Xeon X5650 6-core hyperthreaded

MOBO - Supermicro X8DTL-6F (second socket has a bent pin)

RAM - 24 gb ecc memory (tri channel)

HDD - 1 TB WD BLack drive (From previous gaming system)

HDD - 1 TB Seagate drive 

SDD - 2x OCZ ARC100 120gb drives

PSU - Corsair HX750 

 

My use cases would be - 

- File server (remote access would be nice)

- content streaming to devices in the house

- web server - Im an IT student, doing web work at the moment so being able to set up sites at home would be great.

 

So my questions are :

- what OS do you suggest i go with for this? I can get free windows server licences because i am a student so that is an option, otherwise free is good :P

- Any other cool things i can do with my setup? Im keen to learn, so even if it doesn't fit my use cases im happy to give it a go :)

 

Thanks! 

 

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Put windows on it and run WAMP :)


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I would use ESXi and then Windows Server and Ubuntu.


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2 hours ago, Sic0tiC said:

Hey LTT people,

So i have a decent sized server i picked up a while back for $250 USD. I planned to use it as a file server but never put the time into setting it up properly as my house networking is really weird (Thanks to a big house #firstworldproblems) and had to be reworked as well. So i never bothered. However im sick of the server sitting there doing nothing and i want to use it. 

 

Specs : 

CPU - Intel Xeon X5650 6-core hyperthreaded

MOBO - Supermicro X8DTL-6F (second socket has a bent pin)

RAM - 24 gb ecc memory (tri channel)

HDD - 1 TB WD BLack drive (From previous gaming system)

HDD - 1 TB Seagate drive 

SDD - 2x OCZ ARC100 120gb drives

PSU - Corsair HX750 

 

My use cases would be - 

- File server (remote access would be nice)

- content streaming to devices in the house

- web server - Im an IT student, doing web work at the moment so being able to set up sites at home would be great.

 

So my questions are :

- what OS do you suggest i go with for this? I can get free windows server licences because i am a student so that is an option, otherwise free is good :P

- Any other cool things i can do with my setup? Im keen to learn, so even if it doesn't fit my use cases im happy to give it a go :)

 

Thanks! 

 

 

If you are IT student and you are learning development, you'll need Vagrant or docker VMS and such things, not WAMP... who uses wamp now days? OS selection? depends on your hardware, if your server has normal CPU and RAM, I advice you to install VMware vSphere (ESXi) and you'll be able to install two or more servers, first Windows for streaming and such things (Because, I think it'll be very hard for you to do this things on Linux... anyway), be aware that you can't see any difference between standard shared hosting or local server if you'll start using FTP and such things, FTP has so big delay for every file you are uploading it is stupidest way, because today there are lot of alternatives doing development.


1. vagrant, you can use digitalocean or your local VM software like virtualbox to run development machines and it is billion times better than having headache using FTP, because every time you want to edit something on website or development env using FTP is just a headache, what if you have 1000 files, you have to download/upload each time you do change something, else you have to use PhpStorm or something like that to automate this process, but it'll be bad anyway, because than you have to sync files every time you start, or if you'll change something using another editor, you have to sync again. so vagrant is better and I don't think normal developer will work using wamp this days.

 

2. docker, it is like vagrant... but much modern thing, it uses less resources, so you can run this small containers on your own computer and you'll not see any performance issues, because they are not VMs they are containers, you can run it on all operating systems.

 

3. and last one, you can use language's builtin webserver on your own computer and you don't have to upload or download something, or install any VM or container. just type php -S localhost:3000 and that's all you have development webserver running on Windows, Mac, Linux... everywhere. 

 

I'm software developer 12 years already and believe me )) everything I wrote are used in all big companies and they are not using FTP and wamp stupid things to develop something, none of them. 

 

so, just read documentations about vagrant, install Vmware ESXi and Windows on top of vmware and than just connect vagrant on vmware and you'll build better dev environment, than WAMP or such things.

*** vagrant is linux but it makes folder sharing and it installs everything automatically, so everything that you do on local directory, it just instantly syncs to vagrant box and you don't have to wait something to sync or download/upload it, files are mirrored. 

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Posted · Original PosterOP
7 hours ago, nikadotme said:

 

If you are IT student and you are learning development, you'll need Vagrant or docker VMS and such things, not WAMP... who uses wamp now days? OS selection? depends on your hardware, if your server has normal CPU and RAM, I advice you to install VMware vSphere (ESXi) and you'll be able to install two or more servers, first Windows for streaming and such things (Because, I think it'll be very hard for you to do this things on Linux... anyway), be aware that you can't see any difference between standard shared hosting or local server if you'll start using FTP and such things, FTP has so big delay for every file you are uploading it is stupidest way, because today there are lot of alternatives doing development.


1. vagrant, you can use digitalocean or your local VM software like virtualbox to run development machines and it is billion times better than having headache using FTP, because every time you want to edit something on website or development env using FTP is just a headache, what if you have 1000 files, you have to download/upload each time you do change something, else you have to use PhpStorm or something like that to automate this process, but it'll be bad anyway, because than you have to sync files every time you start, or if you'll change something using another editor, you have to sync again. so vagrant is better and I don't think normal developer will work using wamp this days.

 

2. docker, it is like vagrant... but much modern thing, it uses less resources, so you can run this small containers on your own computer and you'll not see any performance issues, because they are not VMs they are containers, you can run it on all operating systems.

 

3. and last one, you can use language's builtin webserver on your own computer and you don't have to upload or download something, or install any VM or container. just type php -S localhost:3000 and that's all you have development webserver running on Windows, Mac, Linux... everywhere. 

 

I'm software developer 12 years already and believe me )) everything I wrote are used in all big companies and they are not using FTP and wamp stupid things to develop something, none of them. 

 

so, just read documentations about vagrant, install Vmware ESXi and Windows on top of vmware and than just connect vagrant on vmware and you'll build better dev environment, than WAMP or such things.

*** vagrant is linux but it makes folder sharing and it installs everything automatically, so everything that you do on local directory, it just instantly syncs to vagrant box and you don't have to wait something to sync or download/upload it, files are mirrored. 

Thanks for the nice detailed reply mate :) 

A few questions i have : 

1 - Is Vagrant or docker more prevalent in workplace environments? Im doing an internship and the devs use docker.... I havent been set up with it however. I would prefer to get to know the most common one. 

2 - In your point 3 you say "Languages built in web server"..... Can you please clarify im a bit lost here haha. 

 

Thanks again for the help :)  

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Really depends on what you want to learn. If you don't care about virtualization technology etc.. then I'd skip ESXi and Hyper-V. Though granted I think it would make the best use of your resources, but if you're not interested then meh.

 

I don't really see what's wrong with WAMP/LAMP for light web development or learning. Using Apache + virtual hosts you get separation and you just straight up work out of the directory (why even bother uploading/downloading?). You create 1 virtual host as a "dev" and work out of the directory and when done either copy the files to the other web directory or run a script you wrote beforehand. 

By working out of the directory I mean either create a share and mount it to your personal computer, or just remote in to the server directly and have at it. 

 

Docker is pretty cool, I've only got a tiny bit of experience with it, but seems very similar to jails in FreeBSD. Better performing than a virtual machine, easier to manage and update, and very easy to get an instance going. Only downfall is security as it's not entirely independent of the host - which shouldn't matter if you're just developing.

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Posted · Original PosterOP
6 hours ago, Mikensan said:

Really depends on what you want to learn. If you don't care about virtualization technology etc.. then I'd skip ESXi and Hyper-V. Though granted I think it would make the best use of your resources, but if you're not interested then meh.

 

I don't really see what's wrong with WAMP/LAMP for light web development or learning. Using Apache + virtual hosts you get separation and you just straight up work out of the directory (why even bother uploading/downloading?). You create 1 virtual host as a "dev" and work out of the directory and when done either copy the files to the other web directory or run a script you wrote beforehand. 

By working out of the directory I mean either create a share and mount it to your personal computer, or just remote in to the server directly and have at it. 

 

Docker is pretty cool, I've only got a tiny bit of experience with it, but seems very similar to jails in FreeBSD. Better performing than a virtual machine, easier to manage and update, and very easy to get an instance going. Only downfall is security as it's not entirely independent of the host - which shouldn't matter if you're just developing.

Ive played with virtualization before, mostly just higher level VMware and Virtualbox though. So getting into lower level virtualization should be an interesting learning task :) I did a bit of research and apparently using Docker and Vagrant together is quite feasible so i might look into doing that. I agree for my level of developing at home its overkill and probably not needed, but it would be nice to get it going and learn how it works anyways. 

5 hours ago, mineblaster said:

theres plex for your video needs

 

https://www.plex.tv/

 

Ahh good old Plex, forgot about that thanks mate :) 

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On 9/27/2016 at 11:01 AM, nikadotme said:

I'm software developer 12 years already and believe me )) everything I wrote are used in all big companies and they are not using FTP and wamp stupid things to develop something, none of them. 

 

so, just read documentations about vagrant, install Vmware ESXi and Windows on top of vmware and than just connect vagrant on vmware and you'll build better dev environment, than WAMP or such things.

I can tell your a software dev (ignoring the part where you say "i am a software dev"), Thinkig big companies don't use WAMP or FTP... your just silly or have far too much faith in humanity.

 

Next you going to say things like Salted SHA-1 is secure...

 

In all seriousness, get off the "docker/linux/[insert current buzzword here]" band wagon, You should know how to set up an FTP server, and use WAMP/LAMP and all of that, they are tools in your belt, and you need to know em all if you are going to to be able to provide solutions to clients. e.g. walk into a windows shop and tell em your going to build em a web platform on apache and docker, they'll tell you off, because when it crashes and burns (it will everything does), They, not you, will be responsible for maintaining the platform.

 

It's just like with VMWare ESX, sure it is currently the industry standard for VM Hosts, but you should be able to dive into Hyper-V and KVM. Well you shouldn't your a Dev, Ops should be able to.

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On 27/09/2016 at 8:45 AM, Sic0tiC said:

Awesome thanks :) Linux for the web environment? That sounds good 

windows has one as well

and it's easer to work with, not to set up tho, it's a pain


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On 28-9-2016 at 1:09 AM, mineblaster said:

and for the easiest remote software is teamveiwer just have good passwords

 

https://www.teamviewer.com/en/

 

Or.... for Windows, just use good old MSTSC. Open port 3389 and enable remote access and boom, infinitely better than crummy noobviewer :P


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I would not personally expose RDP/RDS over the internet. It's a LAN solution that is mostly secure, but constantly has 0 day exploits pop up that don't get patched all that fast. Maybe through a SSH tunnel or VPN it'd be a good solution.

 

But in terms of functionality or how smooth it is, RDP is pretty damn awesome. I've been using logmein lately and honestly it's almost as good as RDP with added features.

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On 27/09/2016 at 11:02 AM, JaredM54 said:

I would use ESXi and then Windows Server and Ubuntu.

This.

 

You can get ESXi 5.5 for free, and vSphere. Then you can remotely deploy VM's as you wish to it.

 

Personally I would get used to using linux for webservers. If you're interested in doing web development, you'll find unless you're doing ASP/.NET - then anything you could possibly want to do is much easier in linux. Learning linux is a huge advantage to working in businesses that maintain their own webservers.

 

The other advantage is that you can seperate environments if you have any issues.

Seperate your development/webserver environment, from your plex/streaming environment, from your general apps environment.

You mess up your webserver? Redeploy it without taking anything else down.

 


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1 hour ago, Jarsky said:

This.

 

You can get ESXi 5.5 for free, and vSphere. Then you can remotely deploy VM's as you wish to it.

 

Personally I would get used to using linux for webservers. If you're interested in doing web development, you'll find unless you're doing ASP/.NET - then anything you could possibly want to do is much easier in linux. Learning linux is a huge advantage to working in businesses that maintain their own webservers.

 

The other advantage is that you can seperate environments if you have any issues.

Seperate your development/webserver environment, from your plex/streaming environment, from your general apps environment.

You mess up your webserver? Redeploy it without taking anything else down.

 

I would suggest ESXi 6 instead. With update 2 installed, you get a management web client without the need for vCenter. vCenter cannot be used for free, not even older versions, so the web client is the saviour here.


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19 minutes ago, NelizMastr said:

I would suggest ESXi 6 instead. With update 2 installed, you get a management web client without the need for vCenter. vCenter cannot be used for free, not even older versions, so the web client is the saviour here.

It's no different to having being able to have used the vsphere client for desktop in all the previous versions, you've never needed vcenter to do that.


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1 hour ago, NelizMastr said:

I would suggest ESXi 6 instead. With update 2 installed, you get a management web client without the need for vCenter. vCenter cannot be used for free, not even older versions, so the web client is the saviour here.

Is ESXi 6 free now? I was merely suggesting it as it wasnt free when I deployed 5.5


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I actually prefer the desktop client to the web client in small environments >_< And @Jarsky yes it's free. It probably didn't have a free-download yet available when you were looking but it's free. I believe the licensing actually got a little more lax, think they changed either their physical CPU limitation or RAM limitation or assigned cpu limitation - but it got better if I recall correctly. One of the issues I had when I was on the free version was I could only assign... I think 8 CPUs per VM (wanted to assign 16 for my then-virtual plex server).

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10 minutes ago, Mikensan said:

I actually prefer the desktop client to the web client in small environments >_< And @Jarsky yes it's free. It probably didn't have a free-download yet available when you were looking but it's free. I believe the licensing actually got a little more lax, think they changed either their physical CPU limitation or RAM limitation or assigned cpu limitation - but it got better if I recall correctly. One of the issues I had when I was on the free version was I could only assign... I think 8 CPUs per VM (wanted to assign 16 for my then-virtual plex server).

Yeah, good old viclient is my goto as well. My goto OS however isn't Windows, which is all the classic viclient supports, so I am slowly adjusting to the web client. As soon as it drops flash in favor of HTML5 I'll be more than happy to do so.


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8 minutes ago, NelizMastr said:

Yeah, good old viclient is my goto as well. My goto OS however isn't Windows, which is all the classic viclient supports, so I am slowly adjusting to the web client. As soon as it drops flash in favor of HTML5 I'll be more than happy to do so.

Ah yes, not to mention their vcenter linux appliance is pretty janky too. Very catered to windows. I assume your main OS is linux? Is wine still a thing in linux, would that work?

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3 minutes ago, Mikensan said:

Ah yes, not to mention their vcenter linux appliance is pretty janky too. Very catered to windows. I assume your main OS is linux? Is wine still a thing in linux, would that work?

Let's say I dabble in the area of fruit, rather than penguins. But hey, to each their own right?

 

I haven't tried the likes of Wine and crossover lately. I have a linux box running that I could give it a shot on, but the main issue is that VMWare doesn't develop for the desktop client anymore, which means it's stuck on the vSphere 5.0 feature set which is somewhat annoying.

 

PlayOnLinux is usually pretty good by the way. MS Office 2010 runs great on Linux (ppt, word and excel, that is, not the rest)


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4 minutes ago, NelizMastr said:

Let's say I dabble in the area of fruit, rather than penguins. But hey, to each their own right?

 

I haven't tried the likes of Wine and crossover lately. I have a linux box running that I could give it a shot on, but the main issue is that VMWare doesn't develop for the desktop client anymore, which means it's stuck on the vSphere 5.0 feature set which is somewhat annoying.

 

PlayOnLinux is usually pretty good by the way. MS Office 2010 runs great on Linux (ppt, word and excel, that is, not the rest)

ohh ok haha, that actually took me a couple seconds ^_^ I was thinking if there was a distro of BSD that had fruit and it clicked. Yea, and if you have a vm upgraded to v11 it really sucks :-( I just want to mount an ISO!!! I too will be very happy once they move away from flash, good grief. Anywho sorry @OP didn't meant to derail your thread lol. At least you get some insight to vmware a little bit ^_^

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Hahahaha all good mate, i was away over the weekend anyway and its nice to see some insight into new things :) Got a few assignments due midweek so this will be a project next weekend i think. 

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