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    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

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    Talking KVMs, Raid, Servers, WAP, its all here =)


    Hi,

    I have a few different computer hardware related questions to ask, I thought it better to ask them in one thread. I might write a lot, so here we go:

    1) How can I set up two 250Gb HDDs in a Raid Mirror (Raid 1??). I want to add them to a computer I will build soon (Win XP Pro), and we are having a full height ATX case or soemthing like that. What kind of raid controller will I need? Will I need anything else? How do I set them up in array? I will have to partition them I believe as Windows stops at 137Gb, correct? There will be a 30Gb for the main C:/ drive.

    2) I'm looking for a complex KVM kinda thing to. I will list what it needs to do below. To help you, this will all be setup using VGA, not DVI because it is cheaper and my computers all support it already. Plus, as I am using most of these for work, I do not need brilliant gaming style quality. Anyway, this is what I need to do:
    View any of my 3 computers with single monitor on Flatpanel #1 with K/B and Mouse #1 or at the same time, view any computer on Flatpanel #2, with K/B and Mouse #2 independantly.
    View my computer with dual monitor support on Flatpanel #1 and Flatpanel #2, using K/B and Mouse #1.
    View my server, which is down in a cupboard on LCD #2, using K/B and mouse #2. (I have found it may be possible to get an adapter to send it to Cat5 or Coax cable for the long runs (its over 15m))
    Each computer, if it has speakers, has its own set, so I do not need audio switching.
    The mouse and keyboard are PS2 types.

    I need to do this in the UK, so any websites/products must be available here. I do not know if I will need to daisychain, or have multiple KVM switches or what, but the simpler the better.

    3) Are there any good Wireless Access Points suitable for in a cold/possibly damp environment. I want to put one in my attic, just the temperature is pretty weird up there.

    Laters,
    computer
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    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

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    4) What 17" Flatscreens do you reccomend (LCD? TFT?), I am preferably looking for one with a glass front rather than quidgy front (ease of cleaning, etc). I will hopefully buy two, for Dual monitors. They need to be available in the UK.
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    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

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    Hi,

    I see noone has answered yet, it was probably better idea to ask individually, anyway, another question (or two ):

    5) Can anyone tell me what current and seconary voltage (the output) a Sound Blaster Extigy thing needs (is it Audigy, or are they different? anyway, the external sound card thing)?

    6) Reccomedations on a few things:
    > 16 Port 10/100Mbps Switch (rackmount optional). Autosensing, uplink, etc. Netgear? Linksys? Sitecom? Other?
    > USB Webcam. Linux support, etc. Not too expensive, just standard thing really, not for perfect quality or anything...
    > 22Mbps USB Wireless Adaptor. Windows XP support, easy to install.

    Thanks again,
    computer
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  7. Perl Monkey
    Devshed Intermediate (1500 - 1999 posts)

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    I'll offer a little something for #1. I have a RAID 0 array (striping) in my current system. The RAID controller came on the motherboard I bought a year ago (highpoint chip, methinks). Like SCSI hardware, it's in the boot cycle. After bios posts and scans IDE devices, but before hitting the bootloader, it scans the RAID controller and it autodetects its drives. It gives the option to hit ctrl-H or some key combination to get into array setup. Nice little interface where you can (in my case) create/destroy arrays in RAID 0 or 1. Never done 1, but I don't imagine it's any different in setup. Create, format, go. I needed a driver for windows to see the drive, but other than that, it's completely transparent. My pair of 80G drives are seen as a single 160G partition, which is kind of nifty.

    Onto the partition size comment, if you're planning on making it a FAT32 formatted drive, then you might have a 127G limitation. I'm not sure on that number, but it sounds in the ballpark (2^37 ?). If you can use NTFS instead (or any modern filesystem, but mentioning windows means one of its two :unsure: ), your limit is something absurdly high, like 90 Exobytes or so.

    I have never used any kind of KVM setup, so I can't really offer much there.

    I have a D-link WAP, but it stays in my climate-controlled basement (good place, huh?) so I couldn't comment on its resistivity to the elements (though I imagine temperature is less of an issue than moisture).

    Never had an LCD but hope to be wealthy enough to own one someday.

    I don't follow your question on the SB, you want to know the voltage where? Is it an external, powered breakout box or something? I know a guy with one of the internal ones (mounts in a 5.25 "external" bay), so if it's related to that, I could have him check.
    Last edited by icrf; September 3rd, 2003 at 11:52 PM.
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    The Dude Abides
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    Computer,
    Your choices are basically something on the motherboard or a RAID card, Promise would be my suggestion. Not very expensive, easy to configure.

    I don't have any answer for your kvm problem. I've setup lots of kvms, but nothing quite like yours. It gave me a headache reading the question.

    As for LCD's, the top of the mark are ViewSonic and Sony, there are others such as Daewoo, KDS. You might consider Toms Hardware for reviews on the different ones.

    I'm not sure what to tell you about the wireless stuff, most electronics are pretty sensitive to high heat and moisture. Cold generally isn't a problem for electronics, in fact they kind of like it. I've had good luck with Linksys and SMC in both wireless and wired setups. I've never been a big fan of Netgear.

    HTH
    The Dude
    I'm the Dude. So that's what you call me.
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    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

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    Originally posted by icrf
    I don't follow your question on the SB, you want to know the voltage where? Is it an external, powered breakout box or something? I know a guy with one of the internal ones (mounts in a 5.25 "external" bay), so if it's related to that, I could have him check.
    Its on of those external USB things. The actual thing is here:
    http://soundblaster.com/products/extigy/
    AFAIK, its powered by an external transformer, so I would like to know the secondary (output) voltage and current. Probably 12v 1A or something. Not quite sure what you mean by breakout box.

    And about the raid, I'm wanting the auto backup one, mirroring, I can only use one drive, but hey, its securer. And XP runs NTFS I believe.
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  13. Perl Monkey
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    Maybe you can squint better than me, all I can make out is the 12V: http://www.newegg.com/app/Showimage....102-153-09.jpg (second and fourth pics)
    I know, not very scientific. I couldn't imagine that thing taking more than an amp or two. If you have a power supply that makes 12V and more current than it needs, you'd be okay. Anyway, the thing should come with one (or are you ebaying a cheap one sans psu or something?).

    Unless you're also running a *nix on the box and don't trust their NTFS support, there's no reason to use FAT32.
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    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

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    ya 12v. I was looking to see if I can run it out the cig lighter in a car btw.
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  17. Perl Monkey
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    lol, that'd be great. Since you're not converting, you'll probably be okay with the amperage. Cig lighters are generally fused to something like 10-15A I think, way more than that thing could possibly draw.

    The only thing I can think of that might be bad is how "clean" the power out of the socket is. I don't imagine there's any high-quality voltage regulator in the car, and I'm not sure how much it fluctuates (worst at startup). Probably will be okay, but uhh...make sure you're under warranty for your first few attempts.
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    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

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    Ya...

    I have voltage regulater and invertor to power a Shuttle in the boot (trunk). Unfortunately the sound card in it isn't too good, and I think this may be one way of doing it.

    Got a number pad keyboard (just the right bit) hooked up on the dash, so I can track select, control volume, etc. Unfortuantely no LCD, so I have to remember what I am doing. Can also select tuner frequency and/or presets too. Nice

    Laters,
    comp
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    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

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    Okay, heres what I got so far


    Hi,

    Karsh44 help me work the KVM out so far...

    What I will hopefully do it save up for this (model: UNIMUX-2X8U) and this (model: ST-C5USBV) if I can afford it for the remote server (I may shop around a bit for prices ).

    Then, the only thing else I will need is a KVM switch that would have 2 monitor, 2 mice and 2 keyboard inputs(or outputs) for the monitor, mouse and keyboard, mouse and keyboard MUST be USB, monitor is VGA. it would then need to switch those 6 devices to a selection of two sets of inputs. So i can either set it to like Position 1 for dual PC or Position 2 for the other switch's output.

    That should be great for that, just need to find a bob or two

    Can I have some input on if this will work/better ideas/changes please?

    computer
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    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

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    Hi. Just wondering if Im allowed to bump this? Oh what the heck, *bump*

    Any takers on number 6 yet?

    Here we go again
    7) Reccomendations for a good 'clean desk' (IR, not RF) style wirless keyboard and optical mouse.

    8) How would I set up or get a CD stack for network attachement? I want 4 CD drives (52x or so) in a box on my desk set up so all computers on my network can access the drives via My Computer. Is this network attached, or does it need to hook into my server?

    Laters,
    comp
  24. #13
  25. Just another guy
    Devshed Frequenter (2500 - 2999 posts)

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    Why not RF?
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  27. echo $usertitle['computer'];
    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

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    Well I prefer IR as RF has more chances of interference etc. Just a preference really though
  28. #15
  29. Just another guy
    Devshed Frequenter (2500 - 2999 posts)

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    Ah. Well, I actually don't have any experience with IR, but my current mouse/kb is the Logitech cordless MX duo. No interference, good range, and the mouse is about the best I've ever seen. Bit pricey, but the best there is.
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