[mythtv-users] AM2+ motherboard with support for ECC RAM for media player / server

Bob spam at homeurl.co.uk
Thu May 8 02:34:22 UTC 2008

Roger Heflin wrote:
> Bob wrote:
>> Bill Williamson wrote:
>>> On Wed, May 7, 2008 at 4:23 PM, Bob <spam at homeurl.co.uk 
>>> <mailto:spam at homeurl.co.uk>> wrote:
>>>     Bob wrote:
>>>     > Unbuffered / Registered obviously.
>>>     >
>>>     Bad form Bla Bla Bla but just to update the list, the abit A-S78H also
>>>     supports Un-buffered ECC RAM, it doesn't have FireWire though
>>>     http://www.abit.com.tw/page/en/motherboard/motherboard_detail.php?pMODEL_NAME=A-S78H&fMTYPE=Socket%20AM2
>>>     <http://www.abit.com.tw/page/en/motherboard/motherboard_detail.php?pMODEL_NAME=A-S78H&fMTYPE=Socket%20AM2>
>>> Why do you think that ECC vs non ECC ram will have any bearing on 
>>> stability of a media computer ?  If you're going ECC, why would you 
>>> not also go SCSI?
>>> I don't disagree with wanting stability, but the reality is that ECC 
>>> likely will not give you any.
>> ECC RAM corrects bit errors in memory which could cause a crash or other 
>> problems, these errors while rare are estimated to occur once a month 
>> per GB of RAM, I'm planing have 2 or 4 GBs and I'll leave the system up 
>> all the time, which is why reliability and low power consumption are a must.
> Actually the errors don't happen that often anymore, not sure exactly why, but I 
> have monitored huge amounts of ram (10000+ GB for months) and the errors happen 
> pretty rarely except on machines getting huge numbers of errors, in a given 
> month with a machine with 32GB on it very few of the machines get any errors at 
> all, the few that get errors don't usually get only 1 error.

That's interesting to have some real world figures, thank you. 

> But, if you are monitoring ECC then this will give you a chance to know about 
> the memory *BEFORE* it causes you machine to be unstable and crash randomly 
> without you knowing why it is crashing.   It would also speed up correcting the 
> issue as you don't have to guess what the actual issue is.

What do you use to monitor the errors?

> It is really one of the advantages of the AMD cpus, as you can easily get ECC in 
> them without buying a single socket server grade MB for a lot more money that 
> you have to get with the Intel cpus.

This is exactly the reason I'm after an AM2+ MotherBoard that supports 
it, I like these 2 boards [4] but I've had bad experiences with both 
abit [0] and asus [1] in the past in both cases not actually their fault 
but once bitten.. the only downside is the lack of FireWire which as Ron 
on debian-users points out that can be fixed with a PCI card, the only 
problem with that is these mATX are quite short on space and I'll 
probably put a DVB-C card in.

>> I don't want to build a "proper" server with ECC Registered RAM and SCSI 
>> because it'll cost a fair bit more for a fairly marginal improvement in 
>> stability and longevity.
> SCSI does not matter anymore, in the last 3 years the SATA/IDE disk have got a 
> lot better, I think the issue is that the disk manufacturers figured out better 
> platter quality control.   I have experience with large samples of SCSI 
> (2003-800 scsi disks) and SATA disks (2000+ IDE/SATA  disks), and they both have 
> similar failures rates, if you go back to large numbers of IDE/SCSI disks in the 
> 2000-2004 range this was not the case and the SATA disks were utter crap were 
> you could expect 10-20% failures in the first 6 months, and the SCSI/FC disks 
> had very low failure rates.

[0] abit BP6 motherboard dual skt 370 celeron board, that took ECC RAM, 
great home SMP board with a clear upgrade path, only intel moved some 
stuff around on the P!!! and shafted them / us

[1] some ASUS Slot A board with a crappy VIA chipset, [2] I won't touch 
VIA again [3] and shouldn't really hold it against ASUS but I sort of have

[2] and then ALI came along to show us all that VIA wasn't that bad 
after all

[3] although if they genuinely open up their graphics drivers and the 
new 64bit CPU is as OK as it's touted to be, I may well use them for low 
power desktops or media players, and embedded servers if they put ECC 
support in their RAM controllers

[4] the abit A-S78H & ASUS M3A78-EMH HDMI for those that missed the OPs

More information about the mythtv-users mailing list