[sf-lug] Another motherboard was _not_ burned out today

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Thu Feb 19 16:30:21 PST 2015

'Course, there _was_ a typo in there, but the inline spelling checker
did actually work.  Those things work better if you pay attention to
what they're telling you.  ;->

Just continuing the thought I was expressing in the prior message:  
Part of the reason I'm still on 2001-era PIII-based servers from my
former employer VA Linux Systems is AC power (as in, doesn't use much).

Other factors:

1.  I know this hardware literally inside and out.
2.  Nothing the server does is even remotely demanding of CPUs,
    so a PIII is more than good enough.
3.  Only lately has the PIII's 2GB ceiling on RAM even theoretically 
    become of concern, and that only because ability to run VMs
    has become of great interest.  The 1.5GB GB of RAM I've used 
    for many years is more than sufficient for everything the 
    server needs to do.
4.  Everything my server does is bottlenecked by the aDSL, so anything
    fast and powerful would tend to be rather wasted.

Recent additional concerns that weigh the other way:

1.  Reliability becomes if-fy after 14 years of server use.
2.  The specialised PSUs needed for VA Linux Systems 2U rackmount
    servers were always an infamous weak point.  I thought I had that
    covered by stockpiling many spares, but didn't realise that their
    suckiness probably also increased the risk to attached motherboards
    from power fluctuations.  The latter has become apparent.
3.  IA32 is last millennium and needs to finally die.
4.  SCSI hard drives from the early 2000s draw too much AC power per
    gigabyte compared to modern drives.  (I could buy and install
    newer, faster, cooler, higher-capacity drives, but at that 
    point why not modern everything with SSDs?)

I'm looking forward to the new-generation equipment that finally gets me
onto x86-64, 16GB RAM, all-SSD storage, and zero moving parts, because
it will finally enable improvements in the entire means of server
operation and administration, i.e., a difference of kind and not just
one of degree.

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