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Add external drives to Dell Dimension 8200? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Just started looking at WHS and contemplating whether to splash out on a new HP MediaServer or reuse my old Dell Dimension 8200 (purchased 11/2002).  I understand the risks associated with using older hardware, but just trying to work out the technical possibilities at this stage.

    My Dell has a 120GB ATA primary drive and 500GB Hitachi ATA secondary drive.  Some questions:

    - What is the best way to expand the storage on the Dell?  Currently it only has USB 1.0 sockets and Firewire (via a Canopus DV Raptor capture card).  I'd like to be able to add a few external 1TB+ drives.

    - Is it possible for WHS to store data on a network drive (eg a LinkSys NAS100) or does it have to be directly connected to the PC?
    Sunday, January 4, 2009 10:57 AM

Answers

  • You could try to use an E-SATA PCI adapter connected to an SATA enclosure holding your disks, which is really the only halfway reliable option I see with that hardware. The PCI bus will be a bottleneck in this case, but be it.
    WHS cannot store data on a network drive on its own, since it needs physical access to any controlled drive. (Besides that you can create and run scripts, which copy data from shares or certain folders to the network drives in a scheduled fashion).
    Best greetings from Germany
    Olaf
    • Marked as answer by seesharpist Tuesday, January 6, 2009 10:53 AM
    Sunday, January 4, 2009 4:45 PM
    Moderator
  • My WHS box started as a Dimension 8200 too. I removed the 8200 mobo so I wouldn't be constrained by expensive RDRAM, USB 1.0 and PATA drives. I scored a Dimension 8300 board which swaps into the 8200 case without a hitch. I upgraded my power supply (OCZ/PC Power and Cooling makes one for Dell, direct swap). I now have 4 drives INSIDE the box (two in the regular places, one below the floppy and one in the extra optical drive bay). They're hooked up to a Promise 4 port SATA card in a PCI slot. Two Seagate 500 GB drives and Two WD 1TB drives for 3TB in total storage. I also put in an Intel PCI NIC to give me gigabit speeds on the network. The 8300 mobo also gave me additional CPU options. I've got a 3.4 Ghz P4 in there, Extreme Edition and 4GB of SDRAM (according to system prooperties, I'm seeing 3.75 GB). I'm running it headless (i.e. without keyboard, mouse or monitor). I'm also running two 150 GB drives (JBOD, for 300 GB total) in an external USB 2.0 enclosure to do server backups. Also hooked up to a APC UPS.

    This machine is smoking and handling the work of WHS without a hitch.
    • Marked as answer by seesharpist Tuesday, January 6, 2009 10:53 AM
    Monday, January 5, 2009 7:20 PM

All replies

  • You could try to use an E-SATA PCI adapter connected to an SATA enclosure holding your disks, which is really the only halfway reliable option I see with that hardware. The PCI bus will be a bottleneck in this case, but be it.
    WHS cannot store data on a network drive on its own, since it needs physical access to any controlled drive. (Besides that you can create and run scripts, which copy data from shares or certain folders to the network drives in a scheduled fashion).
    Best greetings from Germany
    Olaf
    • Marked as answer by seesharpist Tuesday, January 6, 2009 10:53 AM
    Sunday, January 4, 2009 4:45 PM
    Moderator
  • My WHS box started as a Dimension 8200 too. I removed the 8200 mobo so I wouldn't be constrained by expensive RDRAM, USB 1.0 and PATA drives. I scored a Dimension 8300 board which swaps into the 8200 case without a hitch. I upgraded my power supply (OCZ/PC Power and Cooling makes one for Dell, direct swap). I now have 4 drives INSIDE the box (two in the regular places, one below the floppy and one in the extra optical drive bay). They're hooked up to a Promise 4 port SATA card in a PCI slot. Two Seagate 500 GB drives and Two WD 1TB drives for 3TB in total storage. I also put in an Intel PCI NIC to give me gigabit speeds on the network. The 8300 mobo also gave me additional CPU options. I've got a 3.4 Ghz P4 in there, Extreme Edition and 4GB of SDRAM (according to system prooperties, I'm seeing 3.75 GB). I'm running it headless (i.e. without keyboard, mouse or monitor). I'm also running two 150 GB drives (JBOD, for 300 GB total) in an external USB 2.0 enclosure to do server backups. Also hooked up to a APC UPS.

    This machine is smoking and handling the work of WHS without a hitch.
    • Marked as answer by seesharpist Tuesday, January 6, 2009 10:53 AM
    Monday, January 5, 2009 7:20 PM
  • Thanks Olaf and cellyman.

    cellyman - sounds like you've got that 8200 flying! 

    The RDRAM is certainly a killer - can't understand why they persist in keeping the price so high.  I'm sure RAMBUS would make a lot more money if they caved in on the royalties.  Their loss!

    That's given me a few more options to think about, especially as HP are not yet selling that cute little MediaServer in Australia.
    Tuesday, January 6, 2009 11:00 AM