server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?



  • hello,

    always wondered what to think about the topic and if/when does it worth to use them.
    Also, I'm still uncapable to find resellers for EU/Italy...

    few links:
    asrock
    gigabyte
    tyan
    intel
    chenbro

    I know you have xbyte and supermicro, but here in Italy we haven't. At least we have supermicro, but configuring a supermicro leads to same price of dell/hpe and no support.

    thank you!


  • Service Provider

    I don't trust into boards at all. Intel makes acceptable CPUs, although even those have not held up recently as we've seen, but their other stuff tends to be absolute garbage. They don't under business as a concept, all Intel customers are gamers and hobbyists in their eyes.

    ASRock I know some vendors that use for servers. Well worth considering I think. Tyan is traditionally good.



  • For production, absolutely not. I would never build a white box for production.

    For a lab, I have built quite a few higher end PCs for that. Where I can just do nested virtualization to install and test hosts (some platforms do not support nested), and then everything is virtualized just as it should be. But again, this is strictly for lab purposes and would never be put into production.

    It is good to get as close to production when testing. That is why lots of people will fork out a fortune to buy the exact same gear (systems, networking, storage, etc). But I just refuse to spend that kind of money and I know work isn't going to for a test lab (past employers did, if it was for a customer and they were getting some kind of return... They were mimic environments). Since I won't buy servers, I'll just virtualize them. The hardware I'd be missing, and pretty important to understand, is working with different RAID controllers and iDRAC/iLO. But once you understand how those work, I'm not spending thousands just to have them in my lab.

    For my networking stuff, I'll just use GNS3/etc.



  • ASRock and Gigabyte are good choices. Avoid Intel boards. I haven't seen the others on this side of the Atlantic.



  • @bbigford said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    For production, absolutely not. I would never build a white box for production.

    For a lab, I have built quite a few higher end PCs for that. Where I can just do nested virtualization to install and test hosts (some platforms do not support nested), and then everything is virtualized just as it should be. But again, this is strictly for lab purposes and would never be put into production.

    It is good to get as close to production when testing. That is why lots of people will fork out a fortune to buy the exact same gear (systems, networking, storage, etc). But I just refuse to spend that kind of money and I know work isn't going to for a test lab (past employers did, if it was for a customer and they were getting some kind of return... They were mimic environments). Since I won't buy servers, I'll just virtualize them. The hardware I'd be missing, and pretty important to understand, is working with different RAID controllers and iDRAC/iLO. But once you understand how those work, I'm not spending thousands just to have them in my lab.

    For my networking stuff, I'll just use GNS3/etc.

    I am the absolute opposite, I always prefer doing my own builds for production, and I find out that I produce better quality if the there is strong budget.

    You just have to read the manual of every part, and be knowledgeable and be able to predict how it will all fit together.

    The only down side, or missing element for me is usually ECC memory support. but that said if you have good redundancy and backups and choose stable (very low clocked) parts you wont have any issues.

    Why pay fortune when there are motherboards right now that have support for 8 SATA ports and costs 130$ from AMD AM4 socket, and good processors that some say are cut of their server CPU (threadripper), if this is NAS you can install the OS on very high quality USB drive (and on another one) and fill those 8 ports with drives and do RAID 10, bam you are ready for whatever. The best part of this you can re purpose this build to be whatever, unlike NAS commerical unit, and it will actually be cheaper (i wont use threadripper for NAS of course. ).


  • Service Provider

    @matteo-nunziati said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    Also, I'm still uncapable to find resellers for EU/Italy...

    Of which products?


  • Service Provider

    The reason that Americans are abhorent to whiteboxing is because we get Dell refurb via xByte and SuperMicro at crazy low prices. We can't justify the time of specing out parts, let alone buying them, for a whitebox. Outside of the US, though, where those super low prices don't exist, whiteboxing makes perfect sense.


  • Service Provider

    This is for servers, for desktops, whiteboxing is, I think, back in style. The desktop market has really tanked and what is out there isn't very good. Basically no one wants to manufacture cheap desktops for business, there isn't any money in it. So to get what you want, you whitebox.

    This will change, I think, when SoC based desktops become the range. Give me a fast Snapdragon, 8GB of RAM, and a solid Linux desktop in a tiny sealed box and I'll stop whiteboxing my desktops.



  • @scottalanmiller said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    This is for servers, for desktops, whiteboxing is, I think, back in style. The desktop market has really tanked and what is out there isn't very good. Basically no one wants to manufacture cheap desktops for business, there isn't any money in it. So to get what you want, you whitebox.

    This will change, I think, when SoC based desktops become the range. Give me a fast Snapdragon, 8GB of RAM, and a solid Linux desktop in a tiny sealed box and I'll stop whiteboxing my desktops.

    What are you whiteboxing for business desktops these days? NUCs? They don't seem to be that much if any cheaper than HP micro PCs when you fill them with the parts and OS license.


  • Service Provider

    @dashrender said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    @scottalanmiller said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    This is for servers, for desktops, whiteboxing is, I think, back in style. The desktop market has really tanked and what is out there isn't very good. Basically no one wants to manufacture cheap desktops for business, there isn't any money in it. So to get what you want, you whitebox.

    This will change, I think, when SoC based desktops become the range. Give me a fast Snapdragon, 8GB of RAM, and a solid Linux desktop in a tiny sealed box and I'll stop whiteboxing my desktops.

    What are you whiteboxing for business desktops these days? NUCs? They don't seem to be that much if any cheaper than HP micro PCs when you fill them with the parts and OS license.

    NUCs aren't really a whitebox, that's an Intel commercial box.


  • Service Provider

    @QuixoticJeremy just whiteboxed a desktop this week.



  • @scottalanmiller said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    @matteo-nunziati said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    Also, I'm still uncapable to find resellers for EU/Italy...

    Of which products?

    Basically all of them. Seems more stuff for oem. Even if I click on proposed resellers they actually have nothing.
    Well not that I have phone called them. Just surfed the web catalog.



  • I mean Barebones. I do not mind of choose the right mobo, power supply and the so...



  • @emad-r said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    @bbigford said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    For production, absolutely not. I would never build a white box for production.

    For a lab, I have built quite a few higher end PCs for that. Where I can just do nested virtualization to install and test hosts (some platforms do not support nested), and then everything is virtualized just as it should be. But again, this is strictly for lab purposes and would never be put into production.

    It is good to get as close to production when testing. That is why lots of people will fork out a fortune to buy the exact same gear (systems, networking, storage, etc). But I just refuse to spend that kind of money and I know work isn't going to for a test lab (past employers did, if it was for a customer and they were getting some kind of return... They were mimic environments). Since I won't buy servers, I'll just virtualize them. The hardware I'd be missing, and pretty important to understand, is working with different RAID controllers and iDRAC/iLO. But once you understand how those work, I'm not spending thousands just to have them in my lab.

    For my networking stuff, I'll just use GNS3/etc.

    You just have to read the manual of every part, and be knowledgeable and be able to predict how it will all fit together.

    Lol, reading manuals and knowing how things fit together has absolutely zero to do with my decision of not using a whitebox build for a production system. It makes sense that you might build, if you're outside of the USA. I get black boxes at a low price, so some regions overseas might have to build because of some increased costs. There's no reality where building a whitebox in the USA makes any financial sense, from both an initial cost and operating cost should anything go wrong. There's just too many solid vendors that offer affordable black box systems.

    Also, our servers don't use SATA drives, they are all SAS. Also not dropping in A4 CPUs, they are all x2 8-12 core CPUs for hosts. I just can't build that out for the same price, and it honestly isn't worth my time or the client's money to have so much hands on with one system (let alone multiple if they are in a cluster or multi-cluster environment). For operating costs if something goes wrong, it's more cost effective to have "one throat to choke" instead of me spending lots of time troubleshooting and replacing parts. I can just open a service request with the vendor, and move on to the next client.



  • @bbigford my curiosity comes from the following fact:
    A dual proc with 128gb ram, raid controller and 4 big 3.5 sata disks, no redundant p. supply comes in at 5000€ involving nbd for 5 years.

    Nbd and no redundant supply along w/ sata is basically shit. If you want proper support redundancy and perf you go in the 10000€ ballpark.

    If a vendor was available with 24h spare delivery an 36/60 months warranty, it would be interesting to evaluate its costs.

    I'm almost sure if you go higher in specs it doesn't worth, but under a certain spec you really feel robbed.



  • I'm basically try to understand if something exists like in the nas space with buffalo and netgear which provide business grade stuff and support.
    Here we have only a bunch of enterprises an a load of micro-companies.



  • @dashrender said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    @scottalanmiller said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    This is for servers, for desktops, whiteboxing is, I think, back in style. The desktop market has really tanked and what is out there isn't very good. Basically no one wants to manufacture cheap desktops for business, there isn't any money in it. So to get what you want, you whitebox.

    This will change, I think, when SoC based desktops become the range. Give me a fast Snapdragon, 8GB of RAM, and a solid Linux desktop in a tiny sealed box and I'll stop whiteboxing my desktops.

    What are you whiteboxing for business desktops these days? NUCs? They don't seem to be that much if any cheaper than HP micro PCs when you fill them with the parts and OS license.

    I wish one day we will begin using Single Board Computers like Pi3 and its stronger alternatives for this.

    I am keeping an eye ok Rockchip 3399 boards



  • @scottalanmiller said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    The reason that Americans are abhorent to whiteboxing is because we get Dell refurb via xByte and SuperMicro at crazy low prices. We can't justify the time of specing out parts, let alone buying them, for a whitebox. Outside of the US, though, where those super low prices don't exist, whiteboxing makes perfect sense.

    Yup exactly, whenever I hear relative coming from US or Canada to Jordan, I always bother them to purchase

    Just to give you an idea RASPBERRY PI 3 = cost 35 $ us dollar (no sale or discount) = 24.84 Jordanian Dinar

    Here from 2 sales site not 1:
    https://mikroelectron.com/Product/Raspberry-Pi-3/
    http://www.elektrojo.com/home/1629-raspberry-pi-3-model-b-armv8-with-1g-ram.html

    Costs 50 JD = 70.45 US Dollar

    So we pay actually Double the cost, and in country where salaries are 1/5 of what you get in the US.



  • @matteo-nunziati said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    @bbigford my curiosity comes from the following fact:
    A dual proc with 128gb ram, raid controller and 4 big 3.5 sata disks, no redundant p. supply comes in at 5000€ involving nbd for 5 years.

    Nbd and no redundant supply along w/ sata is basically shit. If you want proper support redundancy and perf you go in the 10000€ ballpark.

    If a vendor was available with 24h spare delivery an 36/60 months warranty, it would be interesting to evaluate its costs.

    I'm almost sure if you go higher in specs it doesn't worth, but under a certain spec you really feel robbed.

    Go with Dell. You can get their machine for half the price they listed it, if you spend some time in the negotiations.
    I’ve took two r740 with 2x 14cores, 11 1tb sas 3 ssd, the best perc available, 578 Gb of ram, idrac enteprise, sd module, 4hr mission critical support and a lot of 10-25gbit ports (I’m sure I’m forgetting something like radyrails) for ~24k each. They were listed over 50k…



  • @francesco-provino yeah this is why I say that on bigger layouts it doesn't worth to whitbox. Even HPE does similar, but on small systems discounts are areally limited.
    also if you want to add new disks later and you do not reach the critical mass for a discount you pay the full price!
    Not a good deal for a small business with its early needs in virtualization and a bunch of services.



  • @scottalanmiller

    @scottalanmiller said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    The reason that Americans are abhorent to whiteboxing is because we get Dell refurb via xByte and SuperMicro at crazy low prices. We can't justify the time of specing out parts, let alone buying them, for a whitebox. Outside of the US, though, where those super low prices don't exist, whiteboxing makes perfect sense.

    You guys in the US get great deals with xByte!, just over the border and we get hit with the exchange rate, high shipping(because of weight), and duties.



  • @matteo-nunziati said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    A dual proc with 128gb ram, raid controller and 4 big 3.5 sata disks, no redundant p. supply comes in at 5000€ involving nbd for 5 years.

    to compare, configuring the same on xbyte on R430 and converting to euro this leads to 3200€ aka 64% of the same stuff here in Italy.



  • @matteo-nunziati said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    I'm basically try to understand if something exists like in the nas space with buffalo and netgear which provide business grade stuff and support.
    Here we have only a bunch of enterprises an a load of micro-companies.

    OK now I'm confused. Do you need a server or a NAS? I thought you needed a server but that post talks about a NAS instead. That changes things considerably if that is the case.



  • @bbigford sorry: bad english on my side.

    I meant that in Italy we some brands in the NAS space that provide business grade support, rather than enterprise support. This lower the price of products (as I was thinking about buying stuff with support).

    This kind of products is available via Buffalo and Netgear.

    I was searching for something similar in the server space. As I've found nothing I've started digging deeper -dropped the service requirement- and googling around I've hit the barebones of the topic.

    While this is not what I was searching in origin barebones are still an option. I was curious to know other people's experiences about reliability/quality of those brands (gigabyte and so...)



  • @matteo-nunziati said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    @bbigford sorry: bad english on my side.

    I meant that in Italy we some brands in the NAS space that provide business grade support, rather than enterprise support. This lower the price of products (as I was thinking about buying stuff with support).

    This kind of products is available via Buffalo and Netgear.

    I was searching for something similar in the server space. As I've found nothing I've started digging deeper -dropped the service requirement- and googling around I've hit the barebones of the topic.

    While this is not what I was searching in origin barebones are still an option. I was curious to know other people's experiences about reliability/quality of those brands (gigabyte and so...)

    I think I'm getting a clearer picture. But what is the need you're trying to fill? File storage, lab with VM storage, etc. I think an answer to that would paint a crystal clear picture of what a community could provide input in.



  • @bbigford said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    @matteo-nunziati said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    @bbigford sorry: bad english on my side.

    I meant that in Italy we some brands in the NAS space that provide business grade support, rather than enterprise support. This lower the price of products (as I was thinking about buying stuff with support).

    This kind of products is available via Buffalo and Netgear.

    I was searching for something similar in the server space. As I've found nothing I've started digging deeper -dropped the service requirement- and googling around I've hit the barebones of the topic.

    While this is not what I was searching in origin barebones are still an option. I was curious to know other people's experiences about reliability/quality of those brands (gigabyte and so...)

    I think I'm getting a clearer picture. But what is the need you're trying to fill? File storage, lab with VM storage, etc. I think an answer to that would paint a crystal clear picture of what a community could provide input in.

    OK this is the big picture.

    Main reason for this question is that I've switched work and now I'm more and more exposed to very small companies. Not so small that a synology is enough, but small in the sense they would be perfectly served by an hypervisor running on a 1U server with few services.

    Commonly you will find a small erp (do not think NAV or SAP, something really small!), the presence tracker server (the one connected to those small appliances where you slap the bagde on), maybe the voip server if they have voip internally. And yes, a small file storage and an AD.

    Now they struggle with a real mess: a mix of VMs and baremetal. Consolidate and virtualize everything would be great but the entry point is a bit expensive. So they tend to not move on.

    Example: we have the file server on synology and an AD on an ancient tower server, the voip is not there because a dedicated server will cost, also we backup the synology on a usb disk.

    Moving the fileserver on the hypervisor, let put all services under hypervisor and use the NAS as a backup target would be a better solution for them.

    Nontheless they have to make a big investment. Here it is: some use leasing and buy really priced stuff from Dell or HPE, others simply say "cool, but no thanks" <- this is what generated the search on google and the search pointed out these producers of "unknown" barebones.

    We have three levels of support in Italy (more or less): consumer (aka you are screwed), business (send replacement in 24h but no on site service sorry) and enterprise (NBD or 24/7 on site), I was searching for a compromise to let those small companies redesign the infrastructure in a more modern way.

    without breaking the bank.



  • Are there no hosting solutions there? or is internet so bad as to make them not an option?



  • @dashrender well some of them have adsl 7/0.5 mbit/s up/down. others have decent FTTC (say 30/10).
    also: hosting for VPS? in a few months they have paid the same as for a new server.

    While Vultr could be ok for VoIP I still need to manage a fileserver on NAS, an AD and other minor things which require a certain amount of disk space... my first idea was: why not virtualize everything in a small server in house...

    but the price tag seems too much to them and have asked for something cheaper... I've digged a bit on google and I've met these brands.

    BETTER: I was aware of some of them (Intel and Asrock), some others have been proposed by google.

    So here my curiosity.



  • @matteo-nunziati said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    @dashrender well some of them have adsl 7/0.5 mbit/s up/down. others have decent FTTC (say 30/10).
    also: hosting for VPS? in a few months they have paid the same as for a new server.

    Really? they are that expensive there?



  • @matteo-nunziati said in server barebones: asrock, gigabyte, tyan, intel, chenbro. Opinions?:

    @dashrender well some of them have adsl 7/0.5 mbit/s up/down. others have decent FTTC (say 30/10).
    also: hosting for VPS? in a few months they have paid the same as for a new server.

    While Vultr could be ok for VoIP I still need to manage a fileserver on NAS, an AD and other minor things which require a certain amount of disk space... my first idea was: why not virtualize everything in a small server in house...

    but the price tag seems too much to them and have asked for something cheaper... I've digged a bit on google and I've met these brands.

    BETTER: I was aware of some of them (Intel and Asrock), some others have been proposed by google.

    So here my curiosity.

    I'm not really sure what we can offer for you here. If the businesses aren't willing to spend what is needed for a solution, what more can you do?

    Sure, if all they want is a PC running those services, fine, just tell them the risks, do what they want and move on. I'm not sure how litigious things are in Italy, but if that's a risk to you, make sure you do it all via email or something?


Log in to reply
 

Looks like your connection to MangoLassi was lost, please wait while we try to reconnect.