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LX195, Refurb EX475 or franklin build


kj_whs
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I am looking at purchasing a WHS box and wanted some advice. I want to spend less than $300 for a complete system. Please look at my requirements below and make any suggestions. I also want advice on what has worked and what to stay away from. I have heard that Franklin builds are not for novice and the next version of WHS will be 64-bit only. Thanks in advance!

I was looking at the HP MediaSmart servers. I have no real preference except on price, but I have read/heard from podcast that the HP provide the most SW apps.

1. Quiet small cool box. Located next to my router and in a closet
2. Back three PC's. I don't have a high need to archive shows from my WMC7 box. Others PC's are standard desktops. The most important backup items are pics, home videos and music.
3. Share pics, music and video
4. Centralized Podcast catcher. I guess will not work with zune (yet).
5. Health functions. The box will be connected to my router. I would like to bounce (reboot, power cycle) the cable modem if the internet connection is lost. I would also like to do this manually when connected on my internal network so I wouldn't ahve to physically go to the modem. Power monitor and email. When the UPS signals a power outage, I want to check health of WMC and force a reboot.
6. Remote from external source. Only do this to update my WMC7 recording schedule.

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For 300 I don't think you would do a FrankenBuild that cheap, unless you found a used or refurb dualcore Dell or something. But your power requirements are very low so you would not need a lot of horsepower. Get the most you can from HP, ASUS or any other Inc. for the 300 and you should be golden.

Check your back up requirements you may need to add a HDD if you have any large collections on the clients.

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With those requirements, I might consider the LX195. I've seen them for as low as $199 this last week. With the extra $100 you could get some additional storage.

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I took advantage of the sales last week and picked up an LX195 for $200 at newegg and a pair of 1TB USB drives on Black Friday for $120. I did the math before hand and couldn't find a way to build my own or even repair/re-use an existing PC I had for that price. This is my first experience with WHS and I'm still re-configuring my network and getting my PC's ready (lots of general cleanup) but I'm excited to plug it in and get started, hopefully this weekend!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hey kj_whs,

You are correct about the frankinbuilds as they are not for the faint of heart. I have a built my own WHS for my sister and brother in-law to backup their Windows and Mac computers and store their pictures (they were in England for two years and did alot of traveling). During the install of WHS and the upgrade to PP3, I had issues with one driver which the people on the We Got Served forum pointed me in the right direction. If you want a turn key system with little fuss and a big support base community then a HP refurb MediaSmart EX470, HP MediaSmart EX 475, or HP MediaSmart LX195.

PCEddie

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