Server Build

I wanted a server for a while to take care of streaming music, streaming films, backup documents, photo storage, print server and anything else I need. I avoided the cheaper generally low powered NAS’s (I have a raspberry Pi that could do that) and decided to essentially build another pc to perform these tasks. It would be more powerful and offer more functionality. It will however cost more to run and take up more space. But I was happy with that.

Kit List

  • AMD APU A6-6400K (second hand)
  • MSI motherboard A88XM-E35 – FM2 socket
  • 4GB Generic RAM – now upgraded to corsair 1600mhz 4GB
  • 500gb Hitachi HDD – now upgraded to 120GB PNY Optima SSD
  • Silverstone SST-PS08W (with USB 3.0) case
  • 1tb data hard drive (see post here)
  • OS – Ubuntu 14.04.1LTS
  • BeQuiet 350w 80+ power supply
  • Pioneer BDC-207DBK Bluray drive
  • Arctic Cooling Alpine 64 rev.2 CPU cooler
  • Arctic mx2 thermal paste
  • Isopropanol alcohol (for cpu cleaning)

So build followed – Silverstone case, paints a bit thin but it will do the trick.

psu fitted,

motherboard fitted in case,

CPU and stock cooler installed,

All was going well, PCs are not difficult to put together and I booted from a usb stick the current version of Ubuntu and went to install which appeared to go fine. Then on reboot it would be fine for a few minutes then reboot, this continued.  I assumed this was hardware related and changed the RAM, upgraded the CPU cooler(see post here)(as the CPU seemed to be getting hot) and swapped the PSU for a known good one. All of these did nothing, I reinstalled and still encountered the same issues and after some head scratching worked out it was a graphics issue, I swapped the open source graphics driver to the AMD ones and after waiting for the drivers to download and apply everything was fine. Afterwards I found out that there were reported issues with specifically MSI boards and AMD chips with one particular Linux Kernel. This is reported to be fixed in the new version that should ship with the new ubuntu version in October if not before.

New CPU cooler installed and running..

After a while I decided to add a bluray drive so the pc could rip discs and not occupy the other pc and I added a cheap SSD to improve boot times and general speed. It will also be a little more energy efficient. The 2.5″HDD was then put to good use upgrading my PS3 – see post here.

The SSD has improved the speed of the machine and was worthwhile, even though the SDD is not very high spec. The AMD chip is OK but seems slower than my other intel chip that is clocked much slower. As a server it’s kind of irreverent as it will just be left to chomp through jobs and is fast enough to happily server up films/music to multiple devices.

SSD and bluray drive installed.

Next up is getting the software sorted – print server, plex server, photo storage, schudled backups, media storage (no doubt more hard drives too).

Job Done