Re: Fedora SMP dual core, dual AMD 64 processor system
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in your article) just to make sure they are not cutting corners, etc. Can I assume that Figure 7 in the article is the Tyan S2895? The system component interconnect architecture shown in Figure 7 looks like just what I want. Thanks Richard Bryan J. Smith wrote:
Gene Czarcinski <gene@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:I purchased a Athlon64 X2 4400+ and an ABIT AN8 SLI motherboard from http://www.monarchcomputer.com/ 1. their prices are not unreasonable 2. they seem to have a good handle on what motherboards work with the X2 processorsMonarch Computer is AMD's #1 Tier-2/Whitebox OEM. They get stuff before other people, and they know how to build boxen well -- at least for what is available in retail mainboards. For servers, I/O is the key. You have to be careful with many mainboards because vendors cut I/O for cost in traces, etc... E.g.,http://www.samag.com/documents/sam0411b/0411b_f6.htm [ Full article with 7 diagrams of PC design, includingOpteron: http://www.samag.com/documents/sam0411b/ ] The nForce4 chipset, like in the new crop of Socket-939 solutions, are clearly desktop/workstation. The nForce Pro 2200 and, optional, 2050 (2200+2050) are more workstation/server designed, and found in even the single Socket-940 Foxconn mainboard I posted. But even then, all versions of the nForce series lacks PCI-X, which is a problem for servers right now.Because if you want server I/O, you want PCI-X right now. There are very few (if any?) mainboards with a singleSocket-940 that has a AMD8131/8132 IC for dual-channel PCI-X 1.0/2.0. And even some dual-Socket-940 mainboards lack one. I was hopeful the new Broadcom/ServerWorks HT1000 chipset would take off. It's a low-cost, single IC chipset with a single PCI-X channel -- ideal for delivering a single Socket-940 with decent server I/O for <$200. Unfortunately, I've only seen it implemented with the HT2000 (HT2000+HT1000), which is its optional bigger brother with PCIe channels on dual Socket-940 for $500+. I might as well go with a nForce Pro 2200+2050 + AMD8131 like the Tyan S2895 instead for the same price. Although PCIe is definitely good for storage and other I/O as well as video, the only "intelligent" RAID storage controller I know of for PCIe is the LSI Logic MegaRaid 320-2E (2-channel U320, PCIe x8 card). It's actually using the IOP332 which is a "hack" of the IOP331 with a PCI-X to PCIe bridge (not ideal). Now there are some PCIe cards "in the works." A new series of RAID cards should show up using the Broadcom BCM8603 soon. It's an 8-channel SAS (8m, 300MBps Serial Attached SCSI, also naturally capable of 1m, 300MBps SATA-IO**) hardware RAID controller that can arbitrate _directly_ to either PCI-X or PCIe x8 (and can even bridge between the two for more embedded solutions) and up to 768MB of DRAM. It's not like Broadcom's current "software" driver RAIDCore PCI-X cards, it's a true, intelligent IC for $60 in quantity (meaning boards should be ~$300+). And it's universal SAS/SATA and PCI-X/PCIe support makes it an "universal solution" for all to use. So the question is what I/O do you need now? The Foxconn can definitely handle a lot of I/O, but it's only PCIe. That's good for getting new PCIe x4 server NICs, but the PCIe x8 storage NICs are virtually non-existant right now. I'm hoping that changes soon with the BCM8603 IC being adopted, but I haven't heard a thing yet. Which means that PCI-X is probably your best bet for servers. The good news is that Monarch Computer _does_ have some older dual Socket-940 Tyan mainboards with the AMD8131 for as little as $300. But whether they support the new x2 processors, I don't know, and they probably don't. So you're going to spend a bit more for them -- at least until someone releases a good, low-cost, single Socket-940 with the Broadcom HT1000 (if ever).
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