Will Centos 6.3 64bit install OK on this Hardware?

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Will Centos 6.3 64bit install OK on this Hardware?

Postby flyguye » 2013/02/17 13:40:58

I am new to Centos & Linux & would like some guidance & help in my hardware setup. I will be getting a Dell power edge R420 1U server in a few days. The system will have initially only1 intel E5 1.8ghz processor & below are the main system specs.

8gb RAM 1600M T/s
4 x 1Tb SAS 15K Hot Plug (configured to RAID10)
PERC H310 RAID card
2 x Hot plug power supply

As Dell doesn't support Centos directly & my little understanding that i have, i am led to believe that Centos is almost identical to RHEL(which Dell supports). Will there be any issues like driver compatibility or hardware compatibility if i were to install Centos 6.3 64bit to run as a webserver (probably hosting about 10 domains) & mailserver(between 1000 - 10,000 accounts)?

Also, for backup, what would you recommend? it would be nice if the backup can auto rebuild the server of something like that.
Any guidance & help to point me in the right direction is most welcome. Thank you so much.


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Will Centos 6.3 64bit install OK on this Hardware?

Postby vonskippy » 2013/02/17 23:12:38

Shouldn't be a problem.

Depending on what type of web engine's those domains use, and how much filtering you do on the email accounts, you might need/want more RAM.

Install Monit & Munin to keep track of things and it will tell you if you're running short on resources.

For backup, the cheapest/easiest solution would be to use external hard drives.

Add a USB3 or eSATA card to your server, then get at least two 2TB external drives (with either USB3 or eSATA ports to match your card).

Then you can rsync your data to the external drives. Do a full one day, and a diff the other six days. Then rotate the external drives.

It would take two major hardware failures (the main server and the current external backup drive) to lose data, and then only a weeks worth.

Since you're running RAID10, it's unlikely (although not impossible).

If the data is really valuable, take the offline external backup drive off site for safety.

Need more then a weeks safety net - buy more external drives.

Keep in mind this is BACKUP, not ARCHIVE.

If you need both, then TAPE is pretty much the best bet (since you only have 2TB to backup), although with the price of 2TB external drives, it's not all that expensive to do archive backups to a external drive and store it away.

As to bare metal restores, if you backup the config files and the data, there isn't much speed difference between making a drive image and just doing a fresh install.

You can always script out the application installs (i.e. LAMP stack, monitoring utils, etc) to keep it simple (and semi-automatic).

If not, look into cloning/imaging software. We use True Image Enterprise, but we're a mixed shop (i.e. windows and linux).

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Re: Will Centos 6.3 64bit install OK on this Hardware?

Postby simon_matthews » 2013/02/18 04:33:15

If you are backing up via rsync, you don't need USB3, USB2 will work. I maintain a file server used in a small company. It has about 6TB of filesystem space and backups run overnight. Of course when using rsync, the time taken depends on the amount of new data, but, in my experiance, USB2 is sufficient.

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Re: Will Centos 6.3 64bit install OK on this Hardware?

Postby flyguye » 2013/02/19 14:45:54

Thank you for your very informative reply. I read it with earnest but still am a little confused. I did by the way go & check out "monit" & "munin", a bit overwhelming at first go but i shall endeavour to read more on it.

The Dell Rep came back to me with the quote for the system i described & i nearly fell of my chair!! It appears the supposed 40% she was going to give me had already been factored & it was still way too high. So my config would most probably lose the 15K SAS drives & end up with 10K SAS drives instead(still in RAID 10 setup). Any potential problems with this change?

I was wondering if you could clarify a little on some points you mentioned,

What do you mean by:

1. web engine's those sites use?
2. how much filtering you do on the email accounts
3. What i really need to protect is the database & user emails(they use a filesystem for storing). So if a failure happenned completely to the server, then i could some way automaticcally return them to a new system or the repaired system.
4. Would doing a cloning be similar to creating a drive image? So if you made a drive image 12noon & the server packed up at 8pm, then all emails & data added after 12noon would be lost correct?
5. Would this solution be a better option, have a storage backup that has the same identical hard drive setup, even the RAID 10 & maybe have something like rsync or other program to do differencial backups every 30 mins or so to minimise loss of data, so that if the server failed because of drives, i could power down the server & replace all the drive with identical drives & power up again? So for being an idiot if i'm talking nonsense.

thank you for you suggestion, will keep that in mind.

thank you all for your time :-)