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Thinking about building a dual

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Beavis

Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2002
Location
Austin, Texas
Thinking about building a dual, need advise

I've been wanting to host a game server for Medal of Honor but to build a server I want to change out my current mobo with a dual. I want to get eithier the MSI K7D or Gigabyte GA-7DPXDW and get a pair of Athlon MP 1ghz. I'm concerned that I will take a performance hit from a single XP 1700 system. Also, will I be able to host more than one game at a time?
 

cmcquistion

IT Director Senior
Joined
Oct 15, 2001
Location
Tennessee
Get a MSI K7D and just use dual XP's. If you're replacing your current system, then all you'll have to buy is one more XP, and you can just get a XP1600, if you want. As long as you unlock both CPU's, they don't have to be the same speed. You set them both from the BIOS. Of course, you can only do this with the MSI board, since the Gigabyte doesn't have multiplier control.

You can use your current RAM, too. I'm using Samsung PC2700, non-Registered, non-ECC in one of my K7D's and it runs flawlessly @ 150 FSB.

You will take a small performance hit (Video) due to your memory running slower (max of 150 FSB) and some slowdown due to the chipset, but overall, your computing will be faster, because you won't have to wait on any single process to finish, before starting another.

As far as hosting more than one game, I don't know for certain, but I don't think that you can, unless you use dual Network controllers. You might not even be able to do it then. I don't know.

I use my Dual XP system to host games of Ghost Recon and this is, by far, the fastest and best system I have ever used. My single P4 @2.4 GHz couldn't hold a candle to the overall performance of my dual XP1600's @1800 MHz each. Sure, my framerates may have been higher in some benchmarks and stuff, when I was only doing one thing at a time, but this system is fast ALL of the time. I can have a dozen programs running and not feel any slowdown, even when hosting and playing a game. I don't have to wait on CPU-hungry programs to relinquish control of the CPU. The power is always there.

I use dual GC68's on several of my duals, BTW. First is dual XP1600's at 1533 MHz and 1.55 Vcore, using Panaflo L1A fans on the heatsinks (MSI K7D.) The second is dual XP1800's @1.525 Vcore (MSI K7D, same fans as previous.) Third is a Tyan 2460 with dual XP1600's @ stock speed and voltage with stock fans on the heatsinks. Good heatsinks for the money and pretty quiet, although I usually replace the 28 dBA (32 CFM) stock fan with a nice, quiet 21 dBA Panaflo L1A (24 CFM.)
 
Last edited:

64026402

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2002
Location
KC,MO USA
Re: Thinking about building a dual, need advise

Beavis said:
I've been wanting to host a game server for Medal of Honor but to build a server I want to change out my current mobo with a dual. I want to get eithier the MSI K7D or Gigabyte GA-7DPXDW and get a pair of Athlon MP 1ghz. I'm concerned that I will take a performance hit from a single XP 1700 system. Also, will I be able to host more than one game at a time?

I would go with the Lan version of the MSI board. Use the memory and the proc then grab a XP1700 for $52. You would need to mod the XPs to do dual but they were easy on my boards.
The memory speed on the MPX boards are actually quite good. You might loose about 1-2% against a top of the line single board.
But you would gain by loosing any overhead from other running threads. There is always some overhead.
 

cmcquistion

IT Director Senior
Joined
Oct 15, 2001
Location
Tennessee
You might loose about 1-2% against a top of the line single board.

No offense, but you're going to lose more than that on memory performance, compared to a KT333 or higher chipset.

That said, though, you will gain so much overall performance by having dual processors, that you will never notice the lower memory performance in anything but benchmarks.
 

David

Forums Super Moderator
Joined
Feb 20, 2001
My RAM benches from my duallie, of someone wants to compare boards.

Dual XP1600+s @ stock, 512MB Crucial PC2100 DDR RAM @ Cas2.5

mem.jpg
 

64026402

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2002
Location
KC,MO USA
cmcquistion said:


No offense, but you're going to lose more than that on memory performance, compared to a KT333 or higher chipset.

That said, though, you will gain so much overall performance by having dual processors, that you will never notice the lower memory performance in anything but benchmarks.

I was refering to actual useable speed increase not benchmarks.
If benchmarked memory speed was directly proportional to performance increase than P4s would be a lot faster. But sadly those numbers are memory capability not system capability.
 

lightbulb8817

Member
Joined
Sep 14, 2002
Location
My igloo
I don't think you need dually setup to run game servers. The thing you need is a huge amout of internet bandwidth (the uplink is more important).

I love the game Medal of Honor: Allied Assault. I can only squeeze 5 people on my computer (P4) because I only have 128kbs uplink, but I do have 1.5kbs downlink.
 

64026402

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2002
Location
KC,MO USA
lightbulb8817 said:
I don't think you need dually setup to run game servers. The thing you need is a huge amout of internet bandwidth (the uplink is more important).

I love the game Medal of Honor: Allied Assault. I can only squeeze 5 people on my computer (P4) because I only have 128kbs uplink, but I do have 1.5kbs downlink.

By nature a server does a lot at once. There is no better application for a dually. Bandwidth is important but one proc dealing with action and a lot of computers is asking for trouble. One can do it but two is more reliable.
 

lightbulb8817

Member
Joined
Sep 14, 2002
Location
My igloo
64026402 said:


By nature a server does a lot at once. There is no better application for a dually. Bandwidth is important but one proc dealing with action and a lot of computers is asking for trouble. One can do it but two is more reliable.

I'm running a game server (Medal of Honor: Allied Assault) right now as I type. I'm only using 2% of the cpu (server is empty) and 65% of my 512mb ram(i'm also running MSN).

I can't see how 2 cpu's would help the 2% cpu a game server requires, maybe more ram will help...

The most important thing in game servers IMO is the amout of bandwidth available for uplink.
 

cmcquistion

IT Director Senior
Joined
Oct 15, 2001
Location
Tennessee
As you said, the server is empty.

If you had several users on it playing, your CPU usage would go to 100% real quick.

I can host rooms of Ghost Recon with at least 12 users, never had any more than that try, and my uplink is only 128k.
 
OP
Beavis

Beavis

Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2002
Location
Austin, Texas
Mucho thanks to everyone for your responses. I like the idea of getting another XP 1700 to pair with the one I have. I guess I can't go wrong buying the MSI K7D which is what I'll look for. The Xp 1700 I have is multiplier unlocked so I'm not limited to just shopping for another 1700 which helps (thanks for pointing that out).

If the difference in video is not noticable to the naked eye and only in benchmarks then I'll be happy. I just don't want horrible skipping or poor video quality but that doesn't seem to be the case. I tested my speed at dslreports.com and it shows 1221 kbps (downlink) & 421 kbps (uplink). I hope this means I can have a large amount of people on at once. Would I be able to support 20-30 players with this speed? Is 512MB of ram enough for this many players?
 

cmcquistion

IT Director Senior
Joined
Oct 15, 2001
Location
Tennessee
How many players you can support probably depends on the game. 421 kbps is very good uplink, so I don't think you'll have any problems there. 512 MB is a good start, it may be enough, it may not. You'll have to try it out and see. I use a GB of memory, but I really see no difference from when I only had 512.

To give you an idea of the difference in video, I put my GF4 Ti4600 in my brother's machine, an Epox 8K3A+ board running at 1667 MHz with 166 FSB. Ran 3DMark2001 and got a score around 11,000. Then I put my video card in my machine, dual CPU's @ 1667 MHz each and FSB of 144. My 3DMark2001 score is now about 10,000. Not a big difference. The framerates are slightly lower, but the overall system speed is improved, load and startup times are faster, and if I have another program running, it doesn't affect my game speed.
 

Blueacid

Member
Joined
Sep 20, 2001
Location
UK
I have 256k up, and 512k down, and performance slumps at anything over 6 players when I'm running UT server.
 

kevmarks

Member
Joined
Mar 3, 2002
Location
Chicago
memory bandwidth is not everything. The first thing you will notice when you power up your dul is that your boot time has halved.

You don't have to close MSM, liwewire, norton AV etc before playing a game. Your duals will handle it. Compiling code is fast..very fast.

You may not have the sandra benchmarks for memory, but your computer will kill anything out there in the real world computing environment.

Not only that, duals don't go down in value like single processor systems. Check out ebay, people are still selling dual pentium pro machines for $100's.

Anybody that has duals, never goes back to single.