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Old 06-22-2010, 10:27 PM
Bill Longman
 
Default core i5

On 06/22/2010 02:56 PM, Stefan G. Weichinger wrote:
>
> again ... I consider buying a new box for work.
>
> currently I am still quite happy with my core2duo E6600 with 8 gigs of
> ram, running ~amd64 ... running fine.
>
> but I remember the huge step back then from the pentium 4 ...
>
> Will it be the same when I go for a core i5?
>
> I use that box for virtualization as well (vmware and kvm), so maybe it
> would also help to not only change cpu but also add 2 cores (going
> quadcore).
>
> I just want to hit the sweet spot if that's possible.
>
> And I'd like to hear any pros and cons if you would like to share.

- core i7 @ 1.6GHz gives me eight threads. The RAM is really fast, too,
so the overall system is very responsive. Great power savings stuff.

- Haven't tried kvm but would probably work fine.

- From /proc/cpuinfo:
address sizes : 36 bits physical, 48 bits virtual

That's only 8GB physical, but that's probably a reasonable limit at
the moment.
 
Old 06-23-2010, 01:43 AM
Mark Knecht
 
Default core i5

On Tue, Jun 22, 2010 at 2:56 PM, Stefan G. Weichinger <lists@xunil.at> wrote:
>
> again ... I consider buying a new box for work.
>
> currently I am still quite happy with my core2duo E6600 with 8 gigs of
> ram, running ~amd64 ... running fine.
>
> but I remember the huge step back then from the pentium 4 ...
>
> Will it be the same when I go for a core i5?
>
> I use that box for virtualization as well (vmware and kvm), so maybe it
> would also help to not only change cpu but also add 2 cores (going
> quadcore).
>
> I just want to hit the sweet spot if that's possible.
>
> And I'd like to hear any pros and cons if you would like to share.
>
> Thanks, Stefan
>

I'm writing you from an Intel Core i5-661 Clarksdale machine using the
built in graphics. I've been fairly impressed with the processor
itself, not very impressed with the stock cooling they supplied, and
in general find the graphics at least acceptable for my needs as a
desktop machine.

The i5-661 cores are actually the fastest cores I have, and I've also
got an i7-920 and an i7-980x. The i5-661 is only 2 cores/4 threads,
but the cores are clocked at a higher rate than the other machine and
on simple non-multi-threaded apps outperform the other machines.
However when I'm running something compute intensive I've had the
machine over heat using stock cooling so get a good CPU fan. (Yeah,
the i7-980x is pretty nice also as it has 12 threads to play with and
builds KDE from source in a little over an hour.)

This machine has 3 old hard drives in it as well as 2 sound cards and
a 1394 card and along with the two LCD monitors it still draws only
about 150W so I'm pretty happy with the cost of running it day to day.

I've not used it at all for Myth since I moved mostly to DirecTV but I
suspect it wouldn't do badly assuming there's no issues with the Intel
Graphics driver. I cannot help you there.

Cheers,
Mark
 
Old 06-23-2010, 02:27 AM
kashani
 
Default core i5

On 6/22/2010 2:56 PM, Stefan G. Weichinger wrote:


again ... I consider buying a new box for work.

currently I am still quite happy with my core2duo E6600 with 8 gigs of
ram, running ~amd64 ... running fine.

but I remember the huge step back then from the pentium 4 ...

Will it be the same when I go for a core i5?

I use that box for virtualization as well (vmware and kvm), so maybe it
would also help to not only change cpu but also add 2 cores (going
quadcore).

I just want to hit the sweet spot if that's possible.

And I'd like to hear any pros and cons if you would like to share.


I updated from a Q6600 to an i7 860 recently. Not amazing speed wise,
but I can run 8 threads and use more than 8GB of RAM. The RAM was the
big thing for me. If you're planning to do a lot with VMs I'd suggest at
least an extra drive if not more if you can swing it. Overall I'd say
you're not going to notice much speed unless you're very CPU bound.


kashani
 
Old 06-23-2010, 08:54 PM
"Stefan G. Weichinger"
 
Default core i5

Am 23.06.2010 03:43, schrieb Mark Knecht:
> I'm writing you from an Intel Core i5-661 Clarksdale machine using the
> built in graphics. I've been fairly impressed with the processor
> itself, not very impressed with the stock cooling they supplied, and
> in general find the graphics at least acceptable for my needs as a
> desktop machine.

That's one of my questions: I currently use a passive Nvidia GeForce
9600 GT here so to be able to play some games now and then (quite good
performance compared to my former card but chosen for being quiet and
cool while I work).

I don't know if the builtin graphics will allow gaming on the same
level, I should go for some benchmark results. But this is definitely
not important ... just a nice to have feature maybe.

> The i5-661 cores are actually the fastest cores I have, and I've also
> got an i7-920 and an i7-980x. The i5-661 is only 2 cores/4 threads,
> but the cores are clocked at a higher rate than the other machine and
> on simple non-multi-threaded apps outperform the other machines.
> However when I'm running something compute intensive I've had the
> machine over heat using stock cooling so get a good CPU fan. (Yeah,
> the i7-980x is pretty nice also as it has 12 threads to play with and
> builds KDE from source in a little over an hour.)

So you run "make -j13" or something?

> This machine has 3 old hard drives in it as well as 2 sound cards and
> a 1394 card and along with the two LCD monitors it still draws only
> about 150W so I'm pretty happy with the cost of running it day to day.
>
> I've not used it at all for Myth since I moved mostly to DirecTV but I
> suspect it wouldn't do badly assuming there's no issues with the Intel
> Graphics driver. I cannot help you there.

I only run mythfrontend here sometimes, mostly in a window on one of the
two monitors. I got used to compiz, even for daily work, but that
shouldn't be much load for the intel graphics.

What I would like to speed up is updating various VMs, I have quite some
linuxes in VMs, some of them gentoo-based, and running "emerge -avuDN
world" on them could always need some speedup ;-)

Thanks, Stefan
 
Old 06-23-2010, 08:56 PM
"Stefan G. Weichinger"
 
Default core i5

Am 23.06.2010 04:27, schrieb kashani:

> I updated from a Q6600 to an i7 860 recently. Not amazing speed
> wise, but I can run 8 threads and use more than 8GB of RAM. The RAM was
> the big thing for me. If you're planning to do a lot with VMs I'd
> suggest at least an extra drive if not more if you can swing it.

You mean for storing the VMs?
I have two drives locally now, RAID1 mostly. And I also test storing VMs
on an nfsV4-storage via gigabit ethernet. Quite OK. And NFS-storage is
more quiet ;-)

> Overall
> I'd say you're not going to notice much speed unless you're very CPU bound.

OK, thanks for that info!

Stefan
 
Old 06-23-2010, 08:59 PM
"Stefan G. Weichinger"
 
Default core i5

Am 23.06.2010 00:27, schrieb Bill Longman:

> - core i7 @ 1.6GHz gives me eight threads. The RAM is really fast, too,
> so the overall system is very responsive. Great power savings stuff.

quite a plus with the box running for >10 hrs a day at least ...

> - Haven't tried kvm but would probably work fine.

I think so. Also the cpu-pinning ... I assume I could then assign one or
more of the 8 (virtual) CPUs to a specific VM ... nice ...

> - From /proc/cpuinfo:
> address sizes : 36 bits physical, 48 bits virtual
>
> That's only 8GB physical, but that's probably a reasonable limit at
> the moment.

I think I could live with this. 8 GB now are more than I currently ever
need.

thx, Stefan
 
Old 06-23-2010, 10:13 PM
Mark Knecht
 
Default core i5

On Wed, Jun 23, 2010 at 1:54 PM, Stefan G. Weichinger <lists@xunil.at> wrote:
> Am 23.06.2010 03:43, schrieb Mark Knecht:
>> I'm writing you from an Intel Core i5-661 Clarksdale machine using the
>> built in graphics. I've been fairly impressed with the processor
>> itself, not very impressed with the stock cooling they supplied, and
>> in general find the graphics at least acceptable for my needs as a
>> desktop machine.
>
> That's one of my questions: I currently use a passive Nvidia GeForce
> 9600 GT here so to be able to play some games now and then (quite good
> performance compared to my former card but chosen for being quiet and
> cool while I work).
>
> I don't know if the builtin graphics will allow gaming on the same
> level, I should go for some benchmark results. But this is definitely
> not important ... just a nice to have feature maybe.

Depending on the MB you choose - I'm using an Intel DH55HC - you might
not even get access to the built-in graphics chip. It requires certain
chipsets and then certain connection on the MB and not all Core i5
MB's that accept the i5-661 have it. I'm sure you know that already
but maybe the info is helpful for others later.

The DH55HC has been a pretty good MB over the last 4-5 months that
I've been running the machine and the graphics are OK. They were not
so good 5 months ago but the driver has gotten noticeably better.

>
>> The i5-661 cores are actually the fastest cores I have, and I've also
>> got an i7-920 and an i7-980x. The i5-661 is only 2 cores/4 threads,
>> but the cores are clocked at a higher rate than the other machine and
>> on simple non-multi-threaded apps outperform the other machines.
>> However when I'm running something compute intensive I've had the
>> machine over heat using stock cooling so get a good CPU fan. (Yeah,
>> the i7-980x is pretty nice also as it has 12 threads to play with and
>> builds KDE from source in a little over an hour.)
>
> So you run "make -j13" or something?
>

Exactly. -j13. However there are things to learn about machine
configuration at this level. The disk systems start operating
differently when you have a lot of memory. I'm running 24GB of DRAM on
that machine and this effects the way the kernel looks at write back
to disk and what not. No problems, just new things to learn.

>> This machine has 3 old hard drives in it as well as 2 sound cards and
>> a 1394 card and along with the two LCD monitors it still draws only
>> about 150W so I'm pretty happy with the cost of running it day to day.
>>
>> I've not used it at all for Myth since I moved mostly to DirecTV but I
>> suspect it wouldn't do badly assuming there's no issues with the Intel
>> Graphics driver. I cannot help you there.
>
> I only run mythfrontend here sometimes, mostly in a window on one of the
> two monitors. I got used to compiz, even for daily work, but that
> shouldn't be much load for the intel graphics.
>

I've wanted to check out compiz but haven't had the time to learn. One
down side to running Gentoo is that you cannot do much of anything
like that without considerable study before hand...

> What I would like to speed up is updating various VMs, I have quite some
> linuxes in VMs, some of them gentoo-based, and running "emerge -avuDN
> world" on them could always need some speedup ;-)
>

For the price it's been a good purchase I think. I've run Windows XP
and Win 7 in vmware and the speed is pretty close to identical on the
apps I use. (Mostly TradeStation) I won't do live stock trading in Win
7 under Gentoo yet but maybe one of these days. It's been very stable
but for safety most of the time when I'm trading I just run Win 7
native.

> Thanks, Stefan

You are welcome!

Cheers,
Mark
 
Old 06-23-2010, 10:38 PM
"Stefan G. Weichinger"
 
Default core i5

Am 24.06.2010 00:13, schrieb Mark Knecht:

>> I don't know if the builtin graphics will allow gaming on the same
>> level, I should go for some benchmark results. But this is
>> definitely not important ... just a nice to have feature maybe.
>
> Depending on the MB you choose - I'm using an Intel DH55HC - you
> might not even get access to the built-in graphics chip. It requires
> certain chipsets and then certain connection on the MB and not all
> Core i5 MB's that accept the i5-661 have it. I'm sure you know that
> already but maybe the info is helpful for others later.

I knew part of it ;-)

I preferred Intel boards for years now and wasn't disappointed.

Maybe this time I chose a Lenovo machine with 3 yrs support ...?

M90p they call it, I don't know ....

> The DH55HC has been a pretty good MB over the last 4-5 months that
> I've been running the machine and the graphics are OK. They were not
> so good 5 months ago but the driver has gotten noticeably better.

Windows driver, I assume?

>> So you run "make -j13" or something?
>
> Exactly. -j13. However there are things to learn about machine
> configuration at this level. The disk systems start operating
> differently when you have a lot of memory. I'm running 24GB of DRAM
> on that machine and this effects the way the kernel looks at write
> back to disk and what not. No problems, just new things to learn.

interesting.

How do you use up 24 gigs of DRAM?
Just tell me, I would like to justify that for me as well ;-)

> I've wanted to check out compiz but haven't had the time to learn.
> One down side to running Gentoo is that you cannot do much of
> anything like that without considerable study before hand...

Sure ... compiz is part eyecandy, part useful little features. I got
used to the features (=would somehow miss them) and the eyecandy (= "ah,
yes, it rotates ... hmm, sure ...").

:-)

> For the price it's been a good purchase I think. I've run Windows XP
> and Win 7 in vmware and the speed is pretty close to identical on
> the apps I use. (Mostly TradeStation) I won't do live stock trading
> in Win 7 under Gentoo yet but maybe one of these days. It's been very
> stable but for safety most of the time when I'm trading I just run
> Win 7 native.

dualboot then. Haven't booted Windows for months here. Should maybe do
and do some gaming instead of hacking around ...

;-)

Thanks, greets, Stefan
 
Old 06-24-2010, 12:25 AM
Mark Knecht
 
Default core i5

On Wed, Jun 23, 2010 at 3:38 PM, Stefan G. Weichinger <lists@xunil.at> wrote:
> Am 24.06.2010 00:13, schrieb Mark Knecht:
>
>>> I don't know if the builtin graphics will allow gaming on the same
>>> level, I should go for some benchmark results. But this is
>>> definitely not important ... just a nice to have feature maybe.
>>
>> Depending on the MB you choose - I'm using an Intel DH55HC - you
>> might not even get access to the built-in graphics chip. It requires
>> certain chipsets and then certain connection on the MB and not all
>> Core i5 MB's that accept the i5-661 have it. I'm sure you know that
>> already but maybe the info is helpful for others later.
>
> I knew part of it ;-)
>
> I preferred Intel boards for years now and wasn't disappointed.
>
> Maybe this time I chose a Lenovo machine with 3 yrs support ...?
>
> M90p they call it, I don't know ....
>
>> The DH55HC has been a pretty good MB over the last 4-5 months that
>> I've been running the machine and the graphics are OK. They were not
>> so good 5 months ago but the driver has gotten noticeably better.
>
> Windows driver, I assume?
>

No, I was speaking of the IntelGFX drivers. Sorry for any confusion.
Although I am somewhat forced to use this machine most of the time
running Windows I've tried to keep my comments mostly directed toward
running MythTV & Gentoo.

>>> So you run "make -j13" or something?
>>
>> Exactly. -j13. However there are things to learn about machine
>> configuration at this level. The disk systems start operating
>> differently when you have a lot of memory. I'm running 24GB of DRAM
>> on that machine and this effects the way the kernel looks at write
>> back to disk and what not. No problems, just new things to learn.
>
> interesting.
>
> How do you use up 24 gigs of DRAM?
> Just tell me, I would like to justify that for me as well ;-)
>

5 copies of Win7 running in vmware VMs. Each VM gets 20GB of RAID0, 2
processors and 4GB of RAM. That's 100GB, 20GB DRAM and 10 threads
total. I then have 2 i7-980X threads & 4GB DRAM for running Gentoo as
the host. Gentoo runs on RAID1 and I have an additional RAID1 which I
use to back up the RAID0 daily.


>> I've wanted to check out compiz but haven't had the time to learn.
>> One down side to running Gentoo is that you cannot do much of
>> anything like that without considerable study before hand...
>
> Sure ... compiz is part eyecandy, part useful little features. I got
> used to the features (=would somehow miss them) and the eyecandy (= "ah,
> yes, it rotates ... hmm, sure ...").
>
> :-)
>
>> For the price it's been a good purchase I think. I've run Windows XP
>> and Win 7 in vmware and the speed is pretty close to identical on
>> the apps I use. (Mostly TradeStation) I won't do live stock trading
>> in Win 7 under Gentoo yet but maybe one of these days. It's been very
>> stable but for safety most of the time when I'm trading I just run
>> Win 7 native.
>
> dualboot then. Haven't booted Windows for months here. Should maybe do
> and do some gaming instead of hacking around ...
>

Yeah, dual boot is what I'm doing with the i5-661. The i7-980X only
runs Gentoo and if I need Windows it's in the 5 VMs described above.

The 980X is expensive to run. It's got 5 hard drives in it (2 for
RAID0, 3 for RAID1) plus the processor and all that memory burns over
300W at idle.

Cheers,
Mark

> ;-)
>
> Thanks, greets, Stefan
>
>
 
Old 06-24-2010, 03:04 AM
kashani
 
Default core i5

On 6/23/2010 1:56 PM, Stefan G. Weichinger wrote:

Am 23.06.2010 04:27, schrieb kashani:


I updated from a Q6600 to an i7 860 recently. Not amazing speed
wise, but I can run 8 threads and use more than 8GB of RAM. The RAM was
the big thing for me. If you're planning to do a lot with VMs I'd
suggest at least an extra drive if not more if you can swing it.


You mean for storing the VMs?
I have two drives locally now, RAID1 mostly. And I also test storing VMs
on an nfsV4-storage via gigabit ethernet. Quite OK. And NFS-storage is
more quiet ;-)


That's works. :-) I was doing a fair amount of rpm building, svn to git
with large trees, kickstart, Mysql, and Puppet work at a job a few
months ago which was hitting the host fairly hard. Between the above and
Outlook getting an extra drive to isolate the host OS from the VMs was a
requirement. Much smoother after that.


kashani
 

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