Should I buy a Xserve?

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by nazir, Dec 13, 2010.

  1. nazir, Dec 13, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2010

    macrumors newbie

    Dec 13, 2010
    hi,I have the opportunity to buy a used Intel Xserve.

    specs: xserve 3.1 2.26 8 core6gb ramnvidia geforce gt120160gb and 1tb hd

    my situation: i have a mbp 2010 2.66ghz(ipad, iphone) and a 27 acd..

    First of all: is 1000 dollars okay for it? in the apple store it costs around 6000 dollars! secondly I'm a big gadget, technique and apple fan and i know i dont really need this xserve! i know its loud (extremly?) and all that, but my thought was that I need it because of its good performance..
    I will buy a macpro in probably two years, and the macbookpro hasn't got enough power for some apps (especially after effects premiere pro, 3d rendering) I need.
    apps that should run on it:
    adobe premiere pro , after effects, cinema 4d and photoshop
    and I wont get a macpro with same performance for that money now..When I buy my macpro in 2 years, I will use the xserve as a flipserver and try to install a webserver and stuff like that, just for fun ;) i dont run it 24/7 and like to use it as desktop...

    and now the questions:D

    q1: work all the apps on it?

    q2: can i use the owc extreme pro ssd as boot drive? i read something about firmware for the hds? (only for server 24/7 use important?)

    q3: work the macpro graphics with it? apple cinema display?

    q4: really to loud for desktop use? i can live with loud:p

    q5: waste of money? go with the macbook pro and wait 2 years?

    and last off all sorry for my english im working on it:cool:

  2. macrumors 68030

    Nov 30, 2008
    $1000? Are you sure? That really sounds like scam. Even more suspicious is that that machine is on the used market already.

    Anyway, it you can get that thing for that price, you'd be an idiot (sorry :D) not to buy it. Even if you don't want to use it, put it on ebay or sell it to me! :p

    To come to your questions;

    1. All apps will work on it. If you don't want to use OS X server, you can install the regular OS X version on it. The hardware is pretty much the same as in the Mac Pro, so there won't be any driver problems.

    2. You can use any SATA SSD as a boot drive.

    3. No, the graphics cards offered for the Mac Pro won't work, but since the XServe has a miniDP port, the Cinema displays will work.

    4. Those machines are really, and I mean REALLY loud!

    5. Waste of money is subjective. In fact, 1000 bucks for that machine is a steal. However, it still is a server, hence not really supposed to be used as a desktop. It's just not convenient. You're very limited with internal storage, the machine itself is huge and extremely loud, and you can't upgrade the graphics of that machine.
    Simply put, the machine is not right for your usage.
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 13, 2010
    yeah i know it's very cheap.... ok do you really sure about install regular osx? (its 10.5 server on it and i have a uprgrade dvd fot snow leopard) how much is the upgrade for 10.6 server? :confused:
  4. macrumors 68030

    Nov 30, 2008
    Yes I am pretty sure about OS X client, haven't tried it myself, though. However, there are several threads in the Apple forums about this topic and the results are pretty positive. The hardware is as I said almost identical to the Mac Pro.

    The update to 10.6 server is $499.
  5. macrumors 6502

    Dec 22, 2006
    I haven't tried but it seems that if you pay to be in the Mac development program - which is $99 a year - you get access to Mac server software for free.
  6. macrumors regular

    Aug 13, 2007
    IF this is a legit sale, buy and resell. You will get more money than what you spent, and you can buy your mac pro tower.
  7. macrumors 68000


    Jul 18, 2002
    $1,000 is a very good price for that Xserve, but not wholly unheard of.

    However, the Xserve makes a very poor desktop machine. Do you have an equipment rack? Or a rolling rack deep enough to accommodate the Xserve?
  8. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 13, 2010
    Thanks for alls reply!

    I try to resell it!
  9. macrumors 68040

    Dr McKay

    Aug 11, 2010
    From what I hear, there is no benefit to running an OS X server over Windows Server, even if its all Macs on the Network.

    I myself work with Windows Server 2003, and can say it is very versatile, robust and very easy to work. Never used 2007 yet though.
  10. macrumors 68020

    Jul 4, 2002
    Muncie, Indiana
    The Xserve is beautiful hardware, but to me, the main problem with using it as a desktop is the noise. Real servers are very noisy - they move a lot of air to keep components inside cool. If you're going to be working in the same room as the machine, you're going to lose your hearing in a couple of months.
  11. macrumors member

    Sep 28, 2010
    definitely go for it, then resell
  12. macrumors 68030

    Nov 30, 2008
    The biggest benefit of OS X server over Windows Server 2008 (there is no 2007) is the capability of afp support. Microsoft decided to dump this feature for the 2008 version, which is why extremely expensive ($1500 IIRC) plugins are required to support afp shares for Server 2008.

    2003 supports it, which is why it is better suited for a Mac environment.
  13. macrumors regular

    Aug 13, 2007
    That is true about OSX Server vs Windows

    The whole idea behind having an OSX Server to manage a Apple network is the proper management of the workstations. You can control and limit app, define folders that should not be cached over the network.

    The whole structure of running Windows Server on a OSX network = NO GPO's. Mac's do not work with Windows GPO's so other than file services, no need for a 2k3 server. Let alone a 2k8.

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