New School Server

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Daveway, Jan 17, 2005.

  1. Daveway macrumors 68040

    Daveway

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2004
    Location:
    New Orleans / Lafayette, La
    #1
    I help with my last school's computers and its time for a new server (8 years old).
    We need to be able to host about 50 computers with some room to grow. We want to have storage available for all to access over the network.

    The current network is on Novell, has a T1 connection, and is all Windows (sadly).
    So we don't really know what to get. Any suggestions are needed and keep in mind we don't want to spend over $5,000.

    Thanks.
     
  2. NeoMayhem macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2003
  3. Daveway thread starter macrumors 68040

    Daveway

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2004
    Location:
    New Orleans / Lafayette, La
    #3
    I know this, but its an all Windows network and I don't know how well it would fly over.
     
  4. 173080 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2003
    #4
    It will do fine.

    I have an Xserve as a file server for Windows and Mac clients each with their own privileges, FTP, Mail and Web Services. The Windows clients can connect fine, in fact, better than on a Windows 2003 Server I had in place before the Xserve.

    If you *need* a lot of storage room to grow you might want to consider the Xserve RAID, otherwise the Xserve will do.

    Just be sure to get a video card with it if you plan on having people without Macs managing it.
     
  5. Daveway thread starter macrumors 68040

    Daveway

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2004
    Location:
    New Orleans / Lafayette, La
    #5
    I don't know much about mainstream networking so I really don't know how everything works. :eek:
     
  6. jimsowden macrumors 68000

    jimsowden

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2003
    Location:
    NY
    #6
    The xserve is industry leading. It has compatibility like none other, and also its much more stable and easily operable than windows. Explain to them it will last longer due to its more advanced software, with pretty much support for any type of client on the planet and any commonly used technology to date. Maybe it will work as a gateway to them going for macs, since they don't seem to be PC nazis like my school it are.
     
  7. belf8st macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #7
    Windows environment? Do you plan on using active directory or implementing some sort of group policy to manage the windows machines? If you've got an all windows environment, you'll find it easier to manage network resources, shares, and policy with a windows type server. Stick with the mainstream vendors. You'll get better a better service level agreement with them. Check out the HP proliant series. They've got entry level servers, rack mountable, and servers that have room to grow into.

    I'm all for Apple and there effort for entering the IT market with their xserves. Great for web applications, web site hosting, and network management devices. Coming from an all Sun environment, I would love to get my hands on one. :)
     
  8. anubis macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2003
    #8
    Agreed. If you're going to be doing anything related to active directory or policy managment, better go with a PC server. At my work we use Dell PowerEdge servers and they're pretty good. If your school doesn't want any advanced networking features like policies on their PCs or active directory, then xserve wouldn't be a bad bet.
     
  9. DVW86 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2004
    Location:
    Washington State
    #9
    I use a Dell U1 rack mount running Windows 2003 server and am sorry that I let them talk me into it. The hardware is nice but the best thing about 2003 is that I can RDC into it from my iMac :p I have had issues with 2003 letting MySQL run as a service and even with Apache. Microsoft just doesn't like you to run anything but their software on Windows.
     
  10. angelneo macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2004
    Location:
    afk
    #10
    I use a Dell server with Red Hat to network the macs and windows in our small office and it is not that bad. Unfortunately, I wrote the back-up software/system by myself so my set up might not really suit your needs.
     
  11. brandon6684 Guest

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2002
    #11
    If don't like the idea of Macs, at lest try to talk your way into a Linux server. Windows has no place on a server(or the desktop for that matter, bt less on a server).
     
  12. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #12
    Windows has every place on a server in a Windows network. Don't talk s*** :rolleyes:
     
  13. brandon6684 Guest

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2002
    #13
    Linux or OS X work well with Windows. Windows doesn't have the reliability, stability or security ro be on a server, no matter the kind of network. Beside he said the current networks is Novell with Windows clients.
     
  14. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #14
    Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiight. That is pure, ignorant, mindless bashing. We have hundreds of HP servers running everything from NT 4 Server to Server 2003 in an environment (finance) where systems availability is everything. If they were any where near as bad as you'd like to make out there is no way we, along with most other investment/trading/whatever banks and so on would be using them.
     
  15. brandon6684 Guest

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2002
    #15
    Nope, wrong again. I've witnessed them first hand, and they aren't a match for a good Unix server. But then again Microsoft has convinced their flock that viruses, routine reboots, registry corruption and all that other fund Windows stuff is normal.
     
  16. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #16
    OK, whatever...I really can't be bothered to argue with you any further, what's the point. I don't really give a **** anyway, it's not my office :rolleyes:

    In a Windows network there is no substitute for a Windows server. Manageability.
     
  17. 3Memos macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2005
    #17
    Go with an Xserve, Xraids and Xsan to manage the network. Apple's scalable enterprise solutions would work in e-services of the the educational organization.
     
  18. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #18
    daveway00

    You have 50 Windows clients, it makes no sense to go with anything but a Windows server, course most here at MacRumors will make out otherwise, hell, everyone's got their opionion, which is fair enough.

    Buy an HP (or Dell if you don't have the budget for an HP) server, load Server 2003 and set it up with Active Directory. This makes it VERY easy to manage your clients, users, and permissions. Not to mention a whole host of other things.
     
  19. Daveway thread starter macrumors 68040

    Daveway

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2004
    Location:
    New Orleans / Lafayette, La
    #19
    eDesign has spoken, let his word be true. Haha.
    In terms of reliability which company is best for servers?
     
  20. angelneo macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2004
    Location:
    afk
    #20
    If you have the budget, go for HP servers (like edesignuk said). If not, Dell servers would do fine for you (keeping finger crossed).

    For the OS, I think it depends on how deep do you want to get yourself involve in the setup. Unix, Linux would require you to spend a great deal of time plus a lot of technical knowledge configuring the system whereas windows would provide easy configuration. The plus side of Unix / Linux is that you can customize to the tiny details on how you want it to be. In terms of stability or vulnerability, as long as you do constant maintenance and updating, both would be fine.
     
  21. DVW86 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2004
    Location:
    Washington State
    #21
    I agree with you about Windows being easier to set up and maintain than unix/linux, but it is not as secure. In the past four years I have seen three major system crashes in multi-million dollar companies where I worked due to Windows viruses. They all had the latest software updates and anti virus software. We had to drive IT guys home after they worked non-stop for 30 hours trying to recover the systems. Windows is (relatively) easy to use and if you stay up to date it is (relatively) secure, but one new virus can and will bring it to it's knees. Been there, Done that, No fun.
     
  22. Daveway thread starter macrumors 68040

    Daveway

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2004
    Location:
    New Orleans / Lafayette, La
    #22
    Our system is always affected by viruses because the whole school district is connected together, our network feeds off of another. However we don't have to worry about viruses affecting the server because it doesn't run any OS at all. Just a Novell command line that is so hard to use we just turn the server on and off.
    What about racks or towers?
     
  23. DVW86 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2004
    Location:
    Washington State
    #23
    Personally I like racks better than towers if you can afford them, but there is nothing wrong with a good tower.
     

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