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New to the club - Advice appreciated


johnnyspice
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Hi everyone,

 

I've just ordered an MS gen8 (G1610T), 16gb ram and x2 WD Red 3TB drives.

 

As I'm new to this and have spend a few hours now googling and researching this site, I wanted to ask a few of questions so that I'm ready to rock and roll when my server arrives. I'd appreciate any help you guys can give me:

 

 

  • I've noticed that people like to mount a SSD inside the server in order to host the OS. This seems like a good idea, but wanted to know if there was any operational difference between mounting the drive in the optical bay vs to the side of the PSU? There seems to be a lot of debate about fan speeds and temperatures.

 

  • In terms of SSD (I'd like to run Linux), what size would be adequate?

 

  • Is there a particular model I should purchase?

 

 

  • Before I even start installing the OS, I'm pretty sure I'll need to update the BIOS, firmware etc. Will intelligent Provisioning handle all this for me or will I need to do something specific? Will i need to watch out for something in particular if I'm using Linux?

 

  • I'd like to run Ubuntu server on this setup. Is this wise? Is there anything I need to be aware of?

 

 

Thanks Everyone.

 

kind regards,

 

John

 

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Before I even start installing the OS, I'm pretty sure I'll need to update the BIOS, firmware etc. Will intelligent Provisioning handle all this for me or will I need to do something specific?

 

In my experience the intelligent provisioning isn't so intelligent, it kept trying to install 'newer' updates for firmware which, according to the intelligent provisioning tool itself, I already had a new version of, so keep an eye on the versions when doing firmware updates and check it isn't downgrading you.

 

What I did was download the latest service pack from here; http://h17007.www1.hp.com/us/en/enterprise/servers/products/service_pack/spp/index.aspx

 

Burnt it to a disc (could use USB for it too probably) and installed the firmware updates using that, but again like I said even using that it was trying to give me outdated updates, but you have the option of doing an automated update or manually choosing each one, so you can go with that and make sure you get the right ones - I bought my Gen8 recently and most of the firmware if I recall correctly was actually up to date anyway, there was only one or two that were a version behind, the BIOS was up to date (J6 I think?) too.

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Thanks for the help paradox.

 

I'll download the service pack, although I'll have to wait for the server to arrive first before I can activate the warranty and get access to it.

 

 

I've noticed that Ubunu is not listed under in the OS list for the service pack. Will it still work?

 

Kind regards,

 

John

Edited by johnnyspice
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I've noticed that people like to mount a SSD inside the server in order to host the OS. This seems like a good idea, but wanted to know if there was any operational difference between mounting the drive in the optical bay vs to the side of the PSU? There seems to be a lot of debate about fan speeds and temperatures.

Not a big difference. You can put a 2-3 drives on a side, and screw then, if you want.

If you have one drive - you can put it on top. Personally I just used a double-sided tape and attached it to PSU like this:

attachicon.gifIMG_20150708_134501.jpg

 

 

In terms of SSD (I'd like to run Linux), what size would be adequate?

You can even run it from USB-stick or Micro-SD card(there's USB inside and microSD port next to it) 4gigs is fine, but with memory prices you can grab bigger card for $5 more and don't care.

SSD is better though: faster and reliable. (USB stick or micro SD can die with tons of data written).

 

I'd like to have both WD drives treated as one logical drive (so RAID?), with the SSD hosting the OS. I have found the following guide and will use these steps (http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/8426-installing-ubuntu-to-ssd-in-odd-bay-with-b120i-raid-1/?p=104204). Is there anything else I need to know?

Never tried it, but looks good.

 

Before I even start installing the OS, I'm pretty sure I'll need to update the BIOS, firmware etc. Will intelligent Provisioning handle all this for me or will I need to do something specific? Will i need to watch out for something in particular if I'm using Linux?

You can use ilo. I haven't updated my BIOS and it runs great. I remember someone told not to upgrade to the latest BIOS (2.20?) because of fan issues.

I might upgrade it later, it shouldn't affect any installed system.

 

I'd like to run Ubuntu server on this setup. Is this wise? Is there anything I need to be aware of?

You might want to run a NAS-oriented system. Typically they're based on Linux/Freebsd. You will get a useful web interface for management and still can log into console and use it as your linux. IF you install Ubuntu - you gotta configure all the services by yourself.

 

PS. Take a look at ESXi and virtualization. That's very cool thing, and microserver is pretty capable box.

Shortly: you install ESXi onto microsd card or USB stick. I think microsd slot purpose to install a hypervisor there.

Then you install several OS onto your SSD. And give access to your hard drive for the system responsible of your storage.

You can run 2-3 OS same time. There's synology OS(DSM) ported, so you can run it next to your linux/windows. If you decide to change OS for storage: install another one, configure as you want. Then connect HDD to newer OS and you're good to go.

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Thanks for the help paradox.

 

I'll download the service pack, although I'll have to wait for the server to arrive first before I can activate the warranty and get access to it.

 

 

I've noticed that Ubunu is not listed under in the OS list for the service pack. Will it still work?

 

Kind regards,

 

John

 

The service pack is entirely for the "HP iLO" part of the motherboard that runs underneath everything else, no matter what OS you run on top of it, so as far as I know it should be fine, I use FreeNAS on mine which is FreeBSD

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Hi

I have been running debian8 on gen8 with ssd in the top odd bay.

Works like a charm.

You just have to buy some cables and install it.

The reason for sdd is that then you can use all for bays for data . And boot time improves by a factor of 7 or 8 , so pretty snappy

Ubuntu itself doesn't take much space . So 120 Gb is enough . I have a 256 because it was a good deal on Amazon

I have crucial but Samsung are good too . You can see any ssd review on Amazon to get a feel of ppls experience with it.

Ubuntu server is best because graphic card on gen8 is weak so it's better to run server

You can see my steps for installing ssd and Debian here http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/9368-boot-ssd-from-optical-drive-bay/#entry101942

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Excellent information guys, really appreciate it!

 

I think I've ordered everything I need to order now. Also went with a 256gb Samsung SSD.

 

As I'm going to be using RAID with B120i, I'm assuming I need to download the driver from the HP website as it's still not included with any of the Linux distros right?

 

In terms of Ubuntu vs Debian vs Centos, whats the way to go? I know I want a pure Linux box to play around with in addition to my current needs (SabNZB, Sonarr, Couchpotato, with DVB-S sattelite card in the PCI slot to stream live TV to my XBMC streamers).

 

I've read somewhere to beware with Ubuntu as kernel updates will stop things working as the driver disappears. Are the people who recommend CentOS doing so because of the infrequency of these kinds of updates?

 

Also, the B120i driver on the HP website does not list any of the open source distros on their site. What should I be downloading/using?

 

 

Kind regards,

 

John

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In terms of Ubuntu vs Debian vs Centos, whats the way to go? I know I want a pure Linux box to play around with in addition to my current needs (SabNZB, Sonarr, Couchpotato, with DVB-S sattelite card in the PCI slot to stream live TV to my XBMC streamers).

ESXi and play with all three of them. :)

It probably will "help" with drivers too.

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I've been running CentOS myself and I am happy with it (in a home server role).

 

I tried Ubuntu on the Gen 8 and it worked fine also, until the kernel driver/kernel problem "broke" my OS.

 

I would recommend CentOS for servers, since it feels more stable, and Ubuntu if you want to play with Linux.


For CentOS you can use the hpvsa driver for RHEL. You can find this on the HP website.

 

Ubuntu does not have a driver on the official HP website, but it is available somewhere on the Internet (actually provided by HP employees). There is a topic somewhere on this forum.

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