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Old 02-02-2008, 01:10 PM
Michelle Konzack
 
Default low-MHz server

It seems you have the need for EMP-Secured equipment...
I have 19" racks which support NEMA68 and EMP...

But I believe, a "normal" working human can not buy it!

Thanks, Greetings and nice Day
Michelle Konzack
Systemadministrator
Tamay Dogan Network
Debian GNU/Linux Consultant


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Old 02-02-2008, 01:13 PM
Michelle Konzack
 
Default low-MHz server

Am 2008-01-31 14:31:34, schrieb Julian De Marchi:
> <snip>
>
> >Any suggestions for good old boxes like this that will run modern Debian
> >or OpenBSD and be reasonably reliable?
>
> An Old HP Proliant 800 or something would suit. They are readily available
> on ebay. I ran one with multiple 200mhz cpus for a year or so, and it never
> had a hiccup.
>
> Best thing is because of the age, you would be able to pick up several for
> a cheap price!

You can get even some IBM Netfini (Dual P2/233 with 512MB)
for cheap on eBay.

Thanks, Greetings and nice Day
Michelle Konzack
Systemadministrator
Tamay Dogan Network
Debian GNU/Linux Consultant


--
Linux-User #280138 with the Linux Counter, http://counter.li.org/
##################### Debian GNU/Linux Consultant #####################
Michelle Konzack Apt. 917 ICQ #328449886
50, rue de Soultz MSN LinuxMichi
0033/6/61925193 67100 Strasbourg/France IRC #Debian (irc.icq.com)
 
Old 02-02-2008, 01:16 PM
Michelle Konzack
 
Default low-MHz server

Am 2008-01-31 08:51:08, schrieb NN_il_Confusionario:
> The IBM I have (90MHz cpu, "carolina" motherboard) still runs woody (and
> linux 1.4.19); I do not think it would run smoothly with etch.

I suspect, Woody will run with a 1.4.19 :-)

Since it was shiped with 2.2.20 and 2.4.8 (AFAIK)

> I think IBM also had multiprocessor models.

You can use the IBM Netfini (Dual P2/233 with 512 MB of memory)
as nice mini workstations which are cheap on eBay.

Thanks, Greetings and nice Day
Michelle Konzack
Systemadministrator
Tamay Dogan Network
Debian GNU/Linux Consultant


--
Linux-User #280138 with the Linux Counter, http://counter.li.org/
##################### Debian GNU/Linux Consultant #####################
Michelle Konzack Apt. 917 ICQ #328449886
50, rue de Soultz MSN LinuxMichi
0033/6/61925193 67100 Strasbourg/France IRC #Debian (irc.icq.com)
 
Old 02-04-2008, 02:18 AM
Bob
 
Default low-MHz server

Douglas A. Tutty wrote:

Hello,

I have an unusual situation and problem at which I've been chipping
away. The base technology predates my IT experience.

My wife is sensitive to what she describes as electromagnetic fields.
She gets headaches and other pains when exposed to equipment: the higher
the frequency, the worse her symptoms. For example, a VT is better than
a regular CRT connected to even a P-II-233 MHZ while a 486DX4-100 is
better than the P-II. Both are far better than my Athlon64 @3.5 GHz.
And any CRT is better than any LCD/plasma screen. Even my Palm Zire (I
think 233 MHz) with its ~2"x~3" screen is unsuitable within about 30
feet of her. She can't wear a digital watch.




I'd get a modern ish server and underclock it, that way you'll be able
to get more RAM and bigger hard drives, the Athlon XP was fairly easy to
get down to 300 MHz with the FSB still @ 133, I never tried lower but I
don't see why not, for comedy value see if you can get the CPU clocking
lower than the RAM.



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Old 02-04-2008, 03:53 AM
"Douglas A. Tutty"
 
Default low-MHz server

On Mon, Feb 04, 2008 at 11:18:50AM +0800, Bob wrote:

> I'd get a modern ish server and underclock it, that way you'll be able
> to get more RAM and bigger hard drives, the Athlon XP was fairly easy to
> get down to 300 MHz with the FSB still @ 133, I never tried lower but I
> don't see why not, for comedy value see if you can get the CPU clocking
> lower than the RAM.

Thanks Bob,

I've been looking at all this. There are many "desktop" or
"workstation" boxes around but they don't have lots of room. This will
be important in the future. 100 MHz boxes aren't going to have a
magical come-back so whatever box I get will have to last well itself,
but also be able to be extended. Consider that 8 years ago, having 9 GB
was huge, which a workstation would have while a server would have 12 of
those 9 GB drives. Now, you need a 9 GB drive just to have room for
stuff and still be able to compile patches.

I want a box into which I can plunk new hard drives without the BIOS
complaining. I think this means SCSI which is more likely to mean a
server; as long as one can change the interface on the back-plane to
hook up to a faster scsi card to match the new drives. Oye.

Right now there's nothing on eBay like this. There are Proliant 2500
and 5000 workstations and IBM PC 300s, but nothing with lots of upgrade
space.

I would _like_ (but not _need) the box to have PCI so that I could add,
e.g. a USB card if it didn't have it built-in. Ditto faster SCSI (or
maybe SATA if it could connect, ditto multi-serial ports).

I was also wondering, re RF/EMF shielding, if a rack-mount server in a
half-height rack with front and back doors may be a good way to go.
With the doors closed, there's a lot fewer openings large enough for the
EMF to get out.

I'm not sure, at the hardware level, how underclocking works. Does it
slow down all electrical activity or does it just divide the clock down.
I know that this would reduce the bulk of the EMF frequency, but the
clock could still be going full-tilt. 300 MHz is still too fast. I
want to stay under 200 and closer to 100 MHz.

Looking on the OpenBSD platforms page, the hppa lists lots of
workstations but not servers under the PA-7100 and PA-7150 processors
(the rest run too fast). HP's documentation on old servers is
incomplete.

I know that the problem is that there was a narrow time-slot when
servers were in the 100-200 MHz range which had the capabilities I need
today and into the future, which are still available and supported on
current OpenBSD.

I'll keep my eye on eBay, my ear on misc@, and wait to hear from J.C.
Roberts to see what he has in his lab.

Thanks Bob.

Doug.


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Old 02-04-2008, 07:44 AM
Bob
 
Default low-MHz server

Douglas A. Tutty wrote:

On Mon, Feb 04, 2008 at 11:18:50AM +0800, Bob wrote:


I'd get a modern ish server and underclock it, that way you'll be able
to get more RAM and bigger hard drives, the Athlon XP was fairly easy to
get down to 300 MHz with the FSB still @ 133, I never tried lower but I
don't see why not, for comedy value see if you can get the CPU clocking
lower than the RAM.



Thanks Bob,

I've been looking at all this. There are many "desktop" or
"workstation" boxes around but they don't have lots of room. This will
be important in the future. 100 MHz boxes aren't going to have a
magical come-back so whatever box I get will have to last well itself,
but also be able to be extended. Consider that 8 years ago, having 9 GB
was huge, which a workstation would have while a server would have 12 of
those 9 GB drives. Now, you need a 9 GB drive just to have room for
stuff and still be able to compile patches.


I want a box into which I can plunk new hard drives without the BIOS
complaining. I think this means SCSI which is more likely to mean a
server; as long as one can change the interface on the back-plane to
hook up to a faster scsi card to match the new drives. Oye.

Right now there's nothing on eBay like this. There are Proliant 2500
and 5000 workstations and IBM PC 300s, but nothing with lots of upgrade
space.



I wouldn't worry too much about the actual case, you can always change
it, my current server is in a super cheap

http://www.aerocool.com.tw/case/masstige/masstige.html
which has no hard drive bays at all but it has 8 5.25" bays that I can
put drive bays in.



I would _like_ (but not _need) the box to have PCI so that I could add,
e.g. a USB card if it didn't have it built-in. Ditto faster SCSI (or
maybe SATA if it could connect, ditto multi-serial ports).



Go PCI (33 MHz) and PATA (100 MHz ??) while they're cheap (SATA has a
link frequency of 1.5GHz)



I was also wondering, re RF/EMF shielding, if a rack-mount server in a
half-height rack with front and back doors may be a good way to go.
With the doors closed, there's a lot fewer openings large enough for the
EMF to get out.



If your wife is genuinely sensitive (and I don't discount it, who'd've
thunk we had a compass in our nose) I'd try to work out what frequencies
effect her and use an oscilloscope to work out what emits RF at the
undesirable frequencies, if she's not really sensitive but it's
psychosomatic the placebo effect of you stalking the house with an
oscilloscope and ebaying the microwave, hair drier, all your florescent
lights & a couple of items she's suspected in the past will probably
cure her, as long as you take it seriously and "scan" all new purchases
etc...



I'm not sure, at the hardware level, how underclocking works. Does it
slow down all electrical activity or does it just divide the clock down.
I know that this would reduce the bulk of the EMF frequency, but the
clock could still be going full-tilt. 300 MHz is still too fast. I
want to stay under 200 and closer to 100 MHz.



It works the other way round, my Front Side Bus runs at 133 MHz and my
Athlon XP has a multiplier of 18 so it has an operating infrequency of
2394 MHz, I think the lowest multiplier on Athlon CPUs is 5 so if you
can get the FSB down to 33 MHz you'd have an operating infrequency of
165 MHz, quite a lot of this extreme over or underclocking isn't
available from BIOS and would have to be changed by a utility after
booting, I only overclock under 'dows for gaming so I don't know what
utility you'd use but I know the linux nvclock tool can underclock my
old nVidia GPS and GRAM to under 100MHz. One advantage of this is you
can have a cron job run in the middle of the night, when you're asleep
on the other side of the house, set to bring the FSB back to 133 and the
multiplier back to 18, before performing any CPU heavy tasks and
returning to low RF mode before morning.


According to http://fab51.com modern 65nm AM2 CPUs also go down to 5X


Looking on the OpenBSD platforms page, the hppa lists lots of
workstations but not servers under the PA-7100 and PA-7150 processors
(the rest run too fast). HP's documentation on old servers is
incomplete.


I know that the problem is that there was a narrow time-slot when
servers were in the 100-200 MHz range which had the capabilities I need
today and into the future, which are still available and supported on
current OpenBSD.

I'll keep my eye on eBay, my ear on misc@, and wait to hear from J.C.
Roberts to see what he has in his lab.

Thanks Bob.



My pleasure, good luck.


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Old 02-04-2008, 06:03 PM
David Brodbeck
 
Default low-MHz server

On Feb 3, 2008, at 8:53 PM, Douglas A. Tutty wrote:

I was also wondering, re RF/EMF shielding, if a rack-mount server in a
half-height rack with front and back doors may be a good way to go.
With the doors closed, there's a lot fewer openings large enough for
the

EMF to get out.


I haven't been following this thread closely, so maybe this has
already been brought up, but have you considered putting the machine
in another room and placing only the monitor, keyboard, and mouse at
your wife's workstation? You can get one room over with typical KVM
extension cables, and if you need to put it farther away you can get
devices that can transmit KVM signals over CAT5 cable. EM field
strength drops off with the square of the distance, so you shouldn't
have to get it very far away to make a big difference. The lack of
audible noise will be a nice bonus, and might contribute a placebo
effect.


I once took this approach to dealing with a high-end CAD workstation
that was just plain too noisy for an office environment. The user was
located against a wall shared with a warehouse space, so we drilled a
1" hole in the wall and used extension cables. Sometimes the simple
solutions are the best.



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Old 02-04-2008, 06:30 PM
John Hasler
 
Default low-MHz server

David Brodbeck writes:
> ...have you considered putting the machine in another room and placing
> only the monitor, keyboard, and mouse at your wife's workstation?

Or put the computer in the basement and set her up with a diskless
X-terminal based on an old, slow pc.
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Old 02-04-2008, 06:55 PM
"Kelly Harding"
 
Default low-MHz server

meant to send this to the list but sent to bob by mistake oops!

Read this thread with a bit of interest.

In terms of non-x86 there are a lot of options.

For Sun/SPARC32, theres Sparcstation 10s and 20s (I recently gave 4
away on freecycle), they're old and slow really. But you can put upto
512mb ram in them, and they'll take two internal drives (50pin for
SS10, SCA for SS20).

As far as CPUs for these go, they can range from 50mhz cacheless cpus
models all the way up to quad hyper-sparc models. Though the best
really is dual SM75 modules (SuperSparcII 75Mb with 1mb cache) for
heat reasons.

I found Linux on SMP Sparc32 to be a bit problematical last time I
tried it. But Solaris 8 or 9 will run on SS10/20s, as well as NetBSD
or OpenBSD (single cpu).

PPC Macs are getting a fair bit cheap these days, and are quite easy
to upgrade, the G4s start around 400Mhz though. G3s you can get at
around 233Mhz, a Beige G3 with a G3/233mhz cpu should handle linux ok,
though they're a bit of a tempermental machine really ime. Blue &
White G3s are the better bet really for G3s. As the CPUs are ZIF
socketed, you can add faster or slower G3 cpus to them. They'll take a
few hard drives too without a problem. Never personally tried Linux on
PPC/Mac as I've always found OS X to meet my needs.

Kelly


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Old 02-04-2008, 06:56 PM
"Kelly Harding"
 
Default low-MHz server

If you have a garage or shed that might work, keep it outside, a
Sparstation or other UNIX type machine would probably handle the
extremes of possible conditions if it isn't heated better than a
generic pc would.

Also, consider that wall-warts are often the biggest producers of EM
radiation too, even stuff on standby will put out a fair amount.

Kelly


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