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Is there any website which reviews servers?

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 09-18-2008
husky86
 

Posts: n/a
Is there any website which reviews servers?
Is there any website which reviews servers, particularly entry-level servers?

Our small business is considering getting into an entry-level server. We all
know about PC World and PC Magazine, for example, when it comes to reviewing
personal computer products. But is there a similar site for business-level
products (in this case servers)?
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 09-18-2008
Ben M. Schorr - MVP (OneNote)
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Is there any website which reviews servers?
The hardware has become relatively commoditized these days. The first
question you need to ask is: What do you need the server to do? How
many users do you have? How many users do you expect to have in the
next, 18-36 months?

Do you just want a basic file server or would you like to host your own
small Exchange server too? Do you need it to run SQL? Going to host a
website?

On a very general level a nice Dell PowerEdge with Microsoft Small
Business Server is a pretty solid choice, but it may be too much machine
(or too much money) for you.

Depends upon your needs.

--
-Ben-
Ben M. Schorr, MVP
Roland Schorr & Tower
http://www.rolandschorr.com
http://www.officeforlawyers.com
Author - The Lawyer's Guide to Microsoft Outlook 2007:
http://tinyurl.com/5m3f5q



"husky86" <husky86@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:23B2D10A-5BD6-4BBA-B788-EFB16DCBFFF5@microsoft.com:

> Is there any website which reviews servers, particularly entry-level servers?
>
> Our small business is considering getting into an entry-level server. We all
> know about PC World and PC Magazine, for example, when it comes to reviewing
> personal computer products. But is there a similar site for business-level
> products (in this case servers)?


Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 09-18-2008
husky86
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Is there any website which reviews servers?
Thanks for this info.

We have a small office at present. This is a financial services business. We
have just been networking the 4 computers in the office through a pretty
ancient local area network. But we now know that we need to have a server in
place, primarily because this LAN is becoming quite a drain on the computers
themselves. We are hoping that the server will free up each individual PC's
speed and computing power, especially a couple of the computers which serve
as hubs for most of the files.

What kind of setup -- specifically -- would you recommend with the Dell
PowerEdge server? I'm thinking the maximum amount of memory, processing
power, and hard drive space, of course, that our budget will allow (which is
around $2500)....?


"Ben M. Schorr - MVP (OneNote)" wrote:

> The hardware has become relatively commoditized these days. The first
> question you need to ask is: What do you need the server to do? How
> many users do you have? How many users do you expect to have in the
> next, 18-36 months?
>
> Do you just want a basic file server or would you like to host your own
> small Exchange server too? Do you need it to run SQL? Going to host a
> website?
>
> On a very general level a nice Dell PowerEdge with Microsoft Small
> Business Server is a pretty solid choice, but it may be too much machine
> (or too much money) for you.
>
> Depends upon your needs.
>
> --
> -Ben-
> Ben M. Schorr, MVP
> Roland Schorr & Tower
> http://www.rolandschorr.com
> http://www.officeforlawyers.com
> Author - The Lawyer's Guide to Microsoft Outlook 2007:
> http://tinyurl.com/5m3f5q
>
>
>
> "husky86" <husky86@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
> news:23B2D10A-5BD6-4BBA-B788-EFB16DCBFFF5@microsoft.com:
>
> > Is there any website which reviews servers, particularly entry-level servers?
> >
> > Our small business is considering getting into an entry-level server. We all
> > know about PC World and PC Magazine, for example, when it comes to reviewing
> > personal computer products. But is there a similar site for business-level
> > products (in this case servers)?

>
>

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  #4 (permalink)  
Old 09-18-2008
Mick Murphy
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Is there any website which reviews servers?
Why don't you just invest in a good quality Router?
If you have no need to set up a Domain, a router is all you need.
--
Mick Murphy - Qld (Sunshine State) - Australia


"husky86" wrote:

> Thanks for this info.
>
> We have a small office at present. This is a financial services business. We
> have just been networking the 4 computers in the office through a pretty
> ancient local area network. But we now know that we need to have a server in
> place, primarily because this LAN is becoming quite a drain on the computers
> themselves. We are hoping that the server will free up each individual PC's
> speed and computing power, especially a couple of the computers which serve
> as hubs for most of the files.
>
> What kind of setup -- specifically -- would you recommend with the Dell
> PowerEdge server? I'm thinking the maximum amount of memory, processing
> power, and hard drive space, of course, that our budget will allow (which is
> around $2500)....?
>
>
> "Ben M. Schorr - MVP (OneNote)" wrote:
>
> > The hardware has become relatively commoditized these days. The first
> > question you need to ask is: What do you need the server to do? How
> > many users do you have? How many users do you expect to have in the
> > next, 18-36 months?
> >
> > Do you just want a basic file server or would you like to host your own
> > small Exchange server too? Do you need it to run SQL? Going to host a
> > website?
> >
> > On a very general level a nice Dell PowerEdge with Microsoft Small
> > Business Server is a pretty solid choice, but it may be too much machine
> > (or too much money) for you.
> >
> > Depends upon your needs.
> >
> > --
> > -Ben-
> > Ben M. Schorr, MVP
> > Roland Schorr & Tower
> > http://www.rolandschorr.com
> > http://www.officeforlawyers.com
> > Author - The Lawyer's Guide to Microsoft Outlook 2007:
> > http://tinyurl.com/5m3f5q
> >
> >
> >
> > "husky86" <husky86@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
> > news:23B2D10A-5BD6-4BBA-B788-EFB16DCBFFF5@microsoft.com:
> >
> > > Is there any website which reviews servers, particularly entry-level servers?
> > >
> > > Our small business is considering getting into an entry-level server. We all
> > > know about PC World and PC Magazine, for example, when it comes to reviewing
> > > personal computer products. But is there a similar site for business-level
> > > products (in this case servers)?

> >
> >

Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 09-18-2008
husky86
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Is there any website which reviews servers?
Sorry to not include adequate information the first time. We are going
through a router at present (Linksys).

What I'm figuring we might need is simply a file/print server. Something
like one of the entry levels described here:

http://www.dell.com/content/products...=04&l=en&s=bsd

We also want the ability to access files online from outside the office.

Thanks.

"Mick Murphy" wrote:

> Why don't you just invest in a good quality Router?
> If you have no need to set up a Domain, a router is all you need.
> --
> Mick Murphy - Qld (Sunshine State) - Australia
>
>
> "husky86" wrote:
>
> > Thanks for this info.
> >
> > We have a small office at present. This is a financial services business. We
> > have just been networking the 4 computers in the office through a pretty
> > ancient local area network. But we now know that we need to have a server in
> > place, primarily because this LAN is becoming quite a drain on the computers
> > themselves. We are hoping that the server will free up each individual PC's
> > speed and computing power, especially a couple of the computers which serve
> > as hubs for most of the files.
> >
> > What kind of setup -- specifically -- would you recommend with the Dell
> > PowerEdge server? I'm thinking the maximum amount of memory, processing
> > power, and hard drive space, of course, that our budget will allow (which is
> > around $2500)....?
> >
> >
> > "Ben M. Schorr - MVP (OneNote)" wrote:
> >
> > > The hardware has become relatively commoditized these days. The first
> > > question you need to ask is: What do you need the server to do? How
> > > many users do you have? How many users do you expect to have in the
> > > next, 18-36 months?
> > >
> > > Do you just want a basic file server or would you like to host your own
> > > small Exchange server too? Do you need it to run SQL? Going to host a
> > > website?
> > >
> > > On a very general level a nice Dell PowerEdge with Microsoft Small
> > > Business Server is a pretty solid choice, but it may be too much machine
> > > (or too much money) for you.
> > >
> > > Depends upon your needs.
> > >
> > > --
> > > -Ben-
> > > Ben M. Schorr, MVP
> > > Roland Schorr & Tower
> > > http://www.rolandschorr.com
> > > http://www.officeforlawyers.com
> > > Author - The Lawyer's Guide to Microsoft Outlook 2007:
> > > http://tinyurl.com/5m3f5q
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > "husky86" <husky86@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
> > > news:23B2D10A-5BD6-4BBA-B788-EFB16DCBFFF5@microsoft.com:
> > >
> > > > Is there any website which reviews servers, particularly entry-level servers?
> > > >
> > > > Our small business is considering getting into an entry-level server. We all
> > > > know about PC World and PC Magazine, for example, when it comes to reviewing
> > > > personal computer products. But is there a similar site for business-level
> > > > products (in this case servers)?
> > >
> > >

Reply With Quote
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 09-18-2008
Kerry Brown
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Is there any website which reviews servers?
Most Linksys routers may not be up to the task of providing adequate
protection to your network if you are running a server, particularly if the
server is accessed from outside of your network. You should be looking at a
firewall/gateway device. They start around $250.00. Sonicwall is one
example.

When setting up a server it is important to take into account the cost of it
being down. If it is down for a day how will it affect the business? If it
is down for a week what will happen? Depending on your answer you will
probably want a lot of redundancy in the server. You will probably want
multiple hard drives in a RAID 1 or RAID 5 array. You will probably want two
PSUs. You will need a server class UPS. Don't skimp on RAM. You may need a
service contact that guarantees a certain response time. I recommend you
look at Small Business Server 2003 R2 (note that SBS 2008 is about to be
released in November) or a Linux server. Unless you have considerable
experience with either I would shop around for a local consultant to spec
the server and set it up. It needs to be set up correctly at the start or
you will end up doing it again later at considerable expense. Make sure the
consultant has experience with whatever OS you pick. SBS in particular needs
to be set up by someone who is familiar with it. Once either is set up and
running they are not too hard to administer for day to day tasks. It will
surprise you how quickly a server will become a crucial part of your
business that will cause you loss of income when it's not working. You want
to do it right the first time. In the long run this will save you money.

The Dell servers are well made. Don't order them online. Phone the 800
number and make sure you are talking to a server spe******t. They will help
you configure the server appropriately. They often have specials that are
not advertised on the web site. HP also has some nice entry level servers.

--
Kerry Brown
MS-MVP - Windows Desktop Experience: Systems Administration
http://www.vistahelp.ca/phpBB2/
http://vistahelpca.blogspot.com/


"husky86" <husky86@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:3DEE50AC-07B9-4DC8-89CD-D33F40717ADE@microsoft.com...
> Sorry to not include adequate information the first time. We are going
> through a router at present (Linksys).
>
> What I'm figuring we might need is simply a file/print server. Something
> like one of the entry levels described here:
>
> http://www.dell.com/content/products...=04&l=en&s=bsd
>
> We also want the ability to access files online from outside the office.
>
> Thanks.
>
> "Mick Murphy" wrote:
>
>> Why don't you just invest in a good quality Router?
>> If you have no need to set up a Domain, a router is all you need.
>> --
>> Mick Murphy - Qld (Sunshine State) - Australia
>>
>>
>> "husky86" wrote:
>>
>> > Thanks for this info.
>> >
>> > We have a small office at present. This is a financial services
>> > business. We
>> > have just been networking the 4 computers in the office through a
>> > pretty
>> > ancient local area network. But we now know that we need to have a
>> > server in
>> > place, primarily because this LAN is becoming quite a drain on the
>> > computers
>> > themselves. We are hoping that the server will free up each individual
>> > PC's
>> > speed and computing power, especially a couple of the computers which
>> > serve
>> > as hubs for most of the files.
>> >
>> > What kind of setup -- specifically -- would you recommend with the Dell
>> > PowerEdge server? I'm thinking the maximum amount of memory, processing
>> > power, and hard drive space, of course, that our budget will allow
>> > (which is
>> > around $2500)....?
>> >
>> >
>> > "Ben M. Schorr - MVP (OneNote)" wrote:
>> >
>> > > The hardware has become relatively commoditized these days. The
>> > > first
>> > > question you need to ask is: What do you need the server to do? How
>> > > many users do you have? How many users do you expect to have in the
>> > > next, 18-36 months?
>> > >
>> > > Do you just want a basic file server or would you like to host your
>> > > own
>> > > small Exchange server too? Do you need it to run SQL? Going to host
>> > > a
>> > > website?
>> > >
>> > > On a very general level a nice Dell PowerEdge with Microsoft Small
>> > > Business Server is a pretty solid choice, but it may be too much
>> > > machine
>> > > (or too much money) for you.
>> > >
>> > > Depends upon your needs.
>> > >
>> > > --
>> > > -Ben-
>> > > Ben M. Schorr, MVP
>> > > Roland Schorr & Tower
>> > > http://www.rolandschorr.com
>> > > http://www.officeforlawyers.com
>> > > Author - The Lawyer's Guide to Microsoft Outlook 2007:
>> > > http://tinyurl.com/5m3f5q
>> > >
>> > >
>> > >
>> > > "husky86" <husky86@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
>> > > news:23B2D10A-5BD6-4BBA-B788-EFB16DCBFFF5@microsoft.com:
>> > >
>> > > > Is there any website which reviews servers, particularly
>> > > > entry-level servers?
>> > > >
>> > > > Our small business is considering getting into an entry-level
>> > > > server. We all
>> > > > know about PC World and PC Magazine, for example, when it comes to
>> > > > reviewing
>> > > > personal computer products. But is there a similar site for
>> > > > business-level
>> > > > products (in this case servers)?
>> > >
>> > >


Reply With Quote
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 09-19-2008
+Bob+
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Is there any website which reviews servers?
On Thu, 18 Sep 2008 03:16:15 -0700, husky86
<husky86@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote:

>Sorry to not include adequate information the first time. We are going
>through a router at present (Linksys).
>
>What I'm figuring we might need is simply a file/print server. Something
>like one of the entry levels described here:
>
>http://www.dell.com/content/products...=04&l=en&s=bsd


In general, one of the entry servers should have plenty of HP for your
needs. SATA drives are needed (or SCSI... less popular these days).

As Kerry suggested, you might want to pay a local consultant to set it
up for you with user accounts, basic file security, backup strategy,
etc.

I highly recommend having two drives, one for the system/OS, one for
the data. You can do this physically (two hard drives) or logically
(two partitions). It greatly simplifies security and backup.

RAID is nice if you can afford to have someone set it up (via a second
physical drive). RAID creates data storage redundancy on the fly. So,
the odds of losing anything, even with a drive crash, are low.

All of this storage talk ties into one important business concept that
most any of the "system consultants" you bring in are going to miss
since 99.9$ of them are hardware/software consultants, not business
consultants. They fail to consider are two key questions. The first
one is backup - how often, what type (incremental or full), turnover
strategy, and off site storage strategy. The key aspect they almost
always miss: the emergency scenario (i.e. what are you going to do
with the backups if the server goes down). As an example, I used to
go into a lot of businesses that had tape backup of their data. Their
key problem was that they only had a tape drive on one machine, the
server that just went down. Doh.

A second issue that they all miss is whether or not you *need* RAID or
some other backup strategy based on your business systems. For
example, is you are like a bank and all your transactions are written
on paper in addition to being entered into a system, then if the
server went down you could start from last night's off site backup
and rebuild the transactions one by one. Laborious, but it is a worst
case situation. On the other hand, if you take in transactions or do
work during the day that is only on the computer and only on one place
in the computer, then some sort of RAID is probably called for.
Consider all that.

>We also want the ability to access files online from outside the office.



Talk to the consultant. If this is financial data, then you need some
sort of VPN solution. FYI- the system horsepower requirements may
increase if you are going to support multiple employees remotely
logged into the server.


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  #8 (permalink)  
Old 09-19-2008
Jack \(MVP-Networking\).
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Is there any website which reviews servers?
Hi
To plan this correctly there is a need for much more information.
If you are Not sure about the issues, and do not really know how to describe
the functional needs in technical terms take a consultant as a first step.
In general Dell Server hardware is considered very reliable. Loaded with
Windows Small business Server can be a good first step.
The Router issue is only a secondary issue and need to be decided according
to the Online communication needs.
Jack (MS, MVP-Networking)

"husky86" <husky86@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:23B2D10A-5BD6-4BBA-B788-EFB16DCBFFF5@microsoft.com...
> Is there any website which reviews servers, particularly entry-level
> servers?
>
> Our small business is considering getting into an entry-level server. We
> all
> know about PC World and PC Magazine, for example, when it comes to
> reviewing
> personal computer products. But is there a similar site for business-level
> products (in this case servers)?


Reply With Quote
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 09-19-2008
husky86
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Is there any website which reviews servers?
Many thanks for all replies!!
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