[mythtv-users] Backend hardware advice - Power usage - RESULTS

dave johnson DJ4904 at hotmail.com
Thu Aug 3 07:48:50 UTC 2006

Re: [mythtv-users] Backend hardware advice - Power usagejust in case anybody was curious, i measured the power usage of the following storage system with the Kill-A-Watt device:

Storage system:
-1GHz PIII System
-512MB Ram
-Intel Desktop Board with integrated video
-Intel Pro1000 Desktop Card ($15 craigslist)
-3Ware 7508-12 PATA RAID controller ($219 ebay)
-11x200GB Seagate 7200.8 PATA HD ($43/ea total after rebate)
-2x250W powersupplies (connect green leads from each ATX connector to have both support auto-on/off.
Mobo+4HDs on one, 5 HDs on the other)
-Openfiler NAS/SAN appliance software (http://openfiler.com)

And at IDLE it pulls a solid 173W.  At full-on disk random IO (turned on playback on two Myth front-ends, as well as ran a "tar cfz /tmp/test.tar.gz /storage" on the box, plus a session of Clone Spy on a mounted windows share, and a "find /" from an NFS client on the same exported share as the Windows share.

Total at this max load hovered between 218W and 228W

For fun I tested my D940 D945GNTLKR desktop and it used 180-210 at idle and 240 with two sessions of winrar trying to compress the C:\WINDOWS directory.  My DFI LAN Party board with X2 3800+ system by same contrast used 110W at idle and 140-150W at full load.  My PII 266 Dell Inspiron Windows domain controller and various other Win utils used an idle 18W and 32W at full load.

So to recap:

Storage system: approx 195W
D950 3.4x2 Intel system: approx 200W
X2 3800+2.2x2 AMD systrem: approx 120W
PII 266Mhz laptop system: approx 25W
Toshiba Tecra 8200 750MHz laptop: 34W

Now I need to grab a Goede system and see what it comes in at but from the looks of it :)

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Dave Johnson 
  To: Discussion about mythtv 
  Sent: Sunday, July 16, 2006 9:24 PM
  Subject: Re: [mythtv-users] Backend hardware advice - Power usage

  Out of curiosity, I'll get my Kill-a-Watt out and check the total power usage of my storage system.  For those interested in how much their equipment is costing them, this baby is well worth the 30 bucks:

  Kill-a-Watt: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0001EY6P0/104-0010433-4125511?v=glance&n"8013

  I bought it at work because we have a "wiring closet" doing double-duty as our server room and we are very constrained by both power and cooling capacity and needed to balance all the UPSs  (1500va is max for "wiring closet" use in San Francisco) across the circuits as well as consider ditching any inefficient equipment if it didn't give us the bang/kWh we needed and anything we could do to lower the 85-deg temp in the room couldn't be bad.  This sucker made it a breeze to measure everything.

  Interestingly, our three single-cpu 3.0 Xeon Dell PE1850 servers from a year ago with 2x10kRPM 36GB drives each consume about the same power as  while our three Opteron 275 dual-cpu BL35p blade servers (1x 60GB PATA 2.5" drive ea), while these three Opteron dualies do about 4 times the work each (!)

  Speaking of power savings, we recently purchased two of the Nexsan SATABeast's for our SAN storage and d2d backup and they support both full spin-down of drives as well as a unique feature that allows the drives to spin to approx 1/2-speed with less than 2 seconds recovery time.  Pretty sweet.  Yeah, like I said, bang/kWh is the new buzz for everyone.  It's about time.

  I'll post when I get those numbers.  It would be interesting to see what numbers others out there have for their systems.  If there's enough interest, I can put a wiki up for people to post their power consumption numbers... we'll see.



  From: John Drescher <drescherjm at gmail.com>
  Reply-To: Discussion about mythtv <mythtv-users at mythtv.org>
  Date: Sun, 16 Jul 2006 23:42:02 -0400
  To: Discussion about mythtv <mythtv-users at mythtv.org>
  Subject: Re: [mythtv-users] Backend hardware advice - RAID suggestions

  I see a big problem with these calculations. You are assuming that the system is not running any type of power saving mode. For current athlon64/opteron processors with cool and quiet running the processor will consume around 25W. 

  Also at work I have an opteron 248 server with 4GB of PC3200 ECC DDR, dual processor board, 2 power supplies and 18 X 250 GB  WD SATA drives and the entire system draws ~300W under full load as reported by the apc ups that it is connected. 


  On 7/16/06, Brad Templeton <brad+myth at templetons.com> wrote:

    On Fri, Jul 14, 2006 at 08:03:08PM -0700, dave johnson wrote:
    > -11x200GB Seagate 7200.8 PATA HD ($43/ea - massive tripple-rebate coupon-hell at Fry's and a lot of
    > trust-worthy friends.  It took almost 3 months to get the rebates and one was denied because I 
    > probably filled one out wrong, so add $70 for "my mistake." ;)

    How many watts are these drives?   Typically one sees 7 to 15w for such drives (slower
    drives, 4500 or 5400 rpm are usually better - quieter, cooler, lower power, longer life). 

    With your two PSs how much power are you drawing for the whole system?  200 to 300
    watts?  More?

    In California (you said you went to Fry's) incremental power has gotten up to 19 cents/kwh.

    That means 300 watts, running 24/7 costs $500 per year.   (In winter you save a bit 
    from the heat it gives you, but not a lot.  In summer you may be paying it back
    in AC costs if you need AC.)

    Even in places with cheaper 10 cent/kwh power, it's still almost $250 per year for
    the power.

    Forget about the damage to the environment, 11x200gb is just a bad way to do it
    from an economic standpoint.    They have 500gb drives in Fry's for $175 I think.

    So 5x500gb could do 2 TB RAID-5 if you really need RAID (you don't in my view, this is 
    not a system that needs 100% availability) for a bit more money ($875 for drives vs.
    $540 for the 11x200gb without doing rebates, and without 2 power supplies.

    But more to the point it would draw a lot less power, and make up the difference 
    in a year or so.   Quieter and smaller too.

    > Never under estimate the power of the K.I.S.S. method :)

    Never forget that power is becoming the most expensive component of any always-on PC,
    especially in California and other places with expensive power. 
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