I was recently given an old HP MediaSmart EX470 server along with some other junk hardware. Although it has no graphics, a slow single-core AMD Sempron CPU, and just 512 MB of RAM, I was able to revive it quite satisfactorily. Here's how I upgraded the hardware and software. Remembering the MediaSmart HP released the first MediaSmart server in 2008, and there was much … [Read more...] about Recalling An HP MediaSmart Server To Active Duty
I've been thinking a lot lately about microprocessors, from the many-core CPUs that AMD and Intel introduced recently to the massively scalable GPGPU processing that's taking machine learning by storm. After years of consolidation on commodity x86 CPUs, it seems that the computing paradigm is turning again to specialized offload processors. This trend towards heterogeneous … [Read more...] about Co-Processors, GPGPU, and Heterogeneous Computing
I'm a storage connectivity nerd, but I often learn new things I missed. Reading about the new Tyan servers with AMD's Epyc server processor, I was surprised by an off-hand mention of "OCuLink" as a storage expansion port. Naturally, I did some digging and discovered what it is: OCuLink is a competitor for Thunderbolt for cabled PCI Express connectivity, offering similar … [Read more...] about What is OCuLink?
Over the last month, high-performance graphics cards have disappeared from retailer stock, selling out immediately as they appear. Although AMD's new RX 580 offers decent graphics performance for the money, gamers aren't driving this demand. Instead, it's all about cryptocurrency mining, with Ethereum leading the way. It's time for AMD to get in on this game, with special … [Read more...] about Where Have All The GPU’s Gone? Cryptocurrency Mining!
The VMware ESX hardware compatibility list is awesome but it's kind of hard to wade through. It's super-detailed, but difficult to navigate if one is browsing for compatible hardware. Although SATA and especially PATA aren't exactly mainstream in enterprise datacenters, they're the most-likely storage attachment for labs and tinkerers like me. So I decided to put together a … [Read more...] about VMware ESX SATA and PATA Compatibility Cheat Sheet