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 New system using GA-790GP-UD4H + Phenom II 940 
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Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2009 3:34 pm
Posts: 39
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Post New system using GA-790GP-UD4H + Phenom II 940
Built a new system using a Gigabyte GA-790GP-UD4H incombination with a AMD Phenom II 940 using 8GB of RAM.

Full Specs:

- server / MB / NIC / controller make and model : Self Built, GA-790GP-UD4H, 2xIntel PRO/1000 PT+1xIntel PRO/1000 GT
- chipset : AMD 790GX+SB750
- CPU socket and type used : AM2+ with AMD Phenom II 940 (overclocked to 3.6 Ghz)
- Memory : 8GB DDR-2 800
- BIOS / firmware versions : Mobo=F2H, Adaptec + LSI =Newest version available.
- are the onboard NIC / storage controller working : 1xAdaptec 3805, 1xDell Perc 5/i (LSI bios) did not test onboard controllers.
- any changes required to enable ESX/ESXi to recognize hardware components : None used. All onboard devices disabled, used USB DVD-Rom drive, unable to make it run from USB-stick.
- does the storage controller support RAID / battery backup for write cache : Using multiple RAID's and single disks, all with write-back cache, no battery backup unit. It is a home server.
- does the MB support Intel VT (vt-x) / AMD-V : Yes, AMD-V
- does it support vt-d (directed I/O) / AMD IOMMU : No clue, how do I check?

Further then that. I am using this system in a Antec Ninehunderd case, with that is a corsair 450HX power supply. The cpu is cooled by a Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme AM2 cooler with the default fan.

There are 4xSamsumg Spinpoint 1TB disks and 4xSeagate 1.5TB disks in a combination of raids over the two cards. Just to mention, the Dell/LSI controller does not support mixed raids on a single disk where the adaptec does. Thus the LSI is used with 4 single disks and the adaptec uses several raid-5's for protection and speed. Most VM' s are run from these disks.

Currently, from the things I have done on the machine (48Hr stable so far) it is performing quite well and mostly memory and disk will be my bottleneck. :twisted:


Tue Apr 28, 2009 2:00 am
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Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 10:13 pm
Posts: 3880
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Post Re: New system using GA-790GP-UD4H + Phenom II 940
Thanks for posting your system specs. I would expect that AMD IOMMU would be a BIOS option and with ESXi 4.0 it will also you to directly access PCI cards (the supported list will be quite short but on the Intel side I have tested it with a Video capture card).

With the RAID controllers you'll see better performance with a battery backed write cache.


Thu Apr 30, 2009 9:44 pm
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Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2009 3:34 pm
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Post Re: New system using GA-790GP-UD4H + Phenom II 940
No such option in the bios sadly enough. It does have an option for "virtualization" and I have turned that on. Is there a place where you can check which options ESX is or is not using?

Very nice that you can dedicate PCI cards. Also, as I wrote I have forced both raid cards to use write back instead of write through even without a battery pack. So no diminished performance here. :)

Further then that, it is performing pretty well. Only thing is that for a heavy duty file server (Gbit+) ESX is definately less suited. Using a win2k8 VM getting about 80MB/sec is about max, after that the system starts acting up. Also scaling across the quad-core seems not possible for this kind of usage.

Very interested in ESX V4.0 Vsphere for this! From what I have read there could be considerable enhancements in this field! :D

Being able to map PCI cards directly is also a nice feature. But since all my adapters (storage) have shared storage, I do not believe I can use it. I'm hoping that the new storage architecture can also be used while running with VMFS on your disks.

I am able to report that the box is 100% stable. Been running for more then a week now. Creating VM's, running a few 24H, stopping and starting others, cloning, snapshotting, etc. All working as exptected.


Fri May 01, 2009 4:54 pm
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Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 10:13 pm
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Post Re: New system using GA-790GP-UD4H + Phenom II 940
> Being able to map PCI cards directly is also a nice feature. But since all my adapters (storage) have shared storage, I do not believe I can use it.

The card would have to be dedicated to just the VM so you couldn't have a datastore on such a storage controller.


Sun May 03, 2009 9:48 pm
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Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2009 3:34 pm
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Post Re: New system using GA-790GP-UD4H + Phenom II 940
I would like to tell everyone that I have upgraded my server from 3.5u4 to 4.0 today and that it is still working without a hitch.

Since my last post the server has not crashed once or disapointed in performance other then HDD and Network.

Currently testing using the paravirtualized SCSI adapter and the VMXnet3 paravirtualized adapter. From what I can see right now they provide a tremendous performance boost. In testing, 100MB/sec or more should be no problem now and the bottlenecks I encountered before seem to have gone away using the Para options. Very nice.

Also with ESX 4i the server seems perfectly stable, under any load. Hardware configuration is still the same as before.


Fri May 22, 2009 5:36 pm
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Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2009 1:44 pm
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Post Re: New system using GA-790GP-UD4H + Phenom II 940
Quindor wrote:
I would like to tell everyone that I have upgraded my server from 3.5u4 to 4.0 today and that it is still working without a hitch.

Since my last post the server has not crashed once or disapointed in performance other then HDD and Network.

Currently testing using the paravirtualized SCSI adapter and the VMXnet3 paravirtualized adapter. From what I can see right now they provide a tremendous performance boost. In testing, 100MB/sec or more should be no problem now and the bottlenecks I encountered before seem to have gone away using the Para options. Very nice.

Also with ESX 4i the server seems perfectly stable, under any load. Hardware configuration is still the same as before.


HI Quindor are you talking about this motherboard?

http://www.gigabyte.com.tw/Products/Motherboard/Products_Spec.aspx?ProductID=3003

GA-MA790GP-UD4H (rev. 1.0)

:)


Fri Jun 26, 2009 3:47 pm
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Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2009 3:34 pm
Posts: 39
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Post Re: New system using GA-790GP-UD4H + Phenom II 940
Yes, that is the one, the same as my topic title also says. Still working perfectly, never had a crash or anything else go wrong. :D


Sun Jun 28, 2009 12:21 pm
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