[Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

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[Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

James Hixon
Greetings Micronet,

My department is upgrading our FileMaker 11 Server to FileMaker 14 and considering whether to replace our hardware with a 2014 Mac Mini or a Dell/Lenovo Windows 2012 Server. 

Although the most recent Mac Minis are not server-grade and do not technically meet FM 14 Server's recommended specs, I tend to think it would be ok for our volume of users/transactions (about 25 databases, about 15 users, no WebDirect). However, I'm compelled by the robustness, flexibility, and upgradeability that the less expensive Windows options offer.

I'm wondering if anyone can speak to their experience hosting FileMaker 14 databases on a 2014 i5 or i7 dual-core Mac Mini. 

I'm also curious about the additional setup and maintenance required to keep a Windows server in compliance with campus security requirements. 

If you have any thoughts, warnings, or suggestions, please send them my way!

Thanks,

James Hixon
Database Administrator
Graduate School of Education
510-642-5031


 
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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Greg Merritt
Hi James,

To toss out another option:

Through a combination of particular (and peculiar) circumstances, our group has developed a severe allergy to hardware. It's so bad that we fear it's contagious. ;)  Basically, we can focus loads more on what we do best, and never spend effort, time, & money on the care & feeding of hardware.

There's a bit of a learning curve, but I don't think we're ever going back. Some quick Googling...


...suggests that you could fire up a Windows instance in AWS and go full speed ahead with a FM installation. I suspect it's quite doable in Azure & Google, too.

Well, something to consider...once you make the jump, you'll never have to negotiate a hardware purchase / server replacement again! 🙆

-Greg



On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 3:49 PM, James Hixon <[hidden email]> wrote:
Greetings Micronet,

My department is upgrading our FileMaker 11 Server to FileMaker 14 and considering whether to replace our hardware with a 2014 Mac Mini or a Dell/Lenovo Windows 2012 Server. 

Although the most recent Mac Minis are not server-grade and do not technically meet FM 14 Server's recommended specs, I tend to think it would be ok for our volume of users/transactions (about 25 databases, about 15 users, no WebDirect). However, I'm compelled by the robustness, flexibility, and upgradeability that the less expensive Windows options offer.

I'm wondering if anyone can speak to their experience hosting FileMaker 14 databases on a 2014 i5 or i7 dual-core Mac Mini. 

I'm also curious about the additional setup and maintenance required to keep a Windows server in compliance with campus security requirements. 

If you have any thoughts, warnings, or suggestions, please send them my way!

Thanks,

James Hixon
Database Administrator
Graduate School of Education
<a href="tel:510-642-5031" value="+15106425031" target="_blank">510-642-5031



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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Jack Shnell
Thanks, Greg.  I'd also suggest taking a look at the IST Virtual Private Server service ([hidden email]).  The campus service may be a less expensive alternative, and easier to set up.

Jack Shnell
Senior Storage System Administrator
IST Platform Services, Storage and Backup Group
642-1188

On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:16 PM, Greg MERRITT <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hi James,

To toss out another option:

Through a combination of particular (and peculiar) circumstances, our group has developed a severe allergy to hardware. It's so bad that we fear it's contagious. ;)  Basically, we can focus loads more on what we do best, and never spend effort, time, & money on the care & feeding of hardware.

There's a bit of a learning curve, but I don't think we're ever going back. Some quick Googling...


...suggests that you could fire up a Windows instance in AWS and go full speed ahead with a FM installation. I suspect it's quite doable in Azure & Google, too.

Well, something to consider...once you make the jump, you'll never have to negotiate a hardware purchase / server replacement again! 🙆

-Greg



On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 3:49 PM, James Hixon <[hidden email]> wrote:
Greetings Micronet,

My department is upgrading our FileMaker 11 Server to FileMaker 14 and considering whether to replace our hardware with a 2014 Mac Mini or a Dell/Lenovo Windows 2012 Server. 

Although the most recent Mac Minis are not server-grade and do not technically meet FM 14 Server's recommended specs, I tend to think it would be ok for our volume of users/transactions (about 25 databases, about 15 users, no WebDirect). However, I'm compelled by the robustness, flexibility, and upgradeability that the less expensive Windows options offer.

I'm wondering if anyone can speak to their experience hosting FileMaker 14 databases on a 2014 i5 or i7 dual-core Mac Mini. 

I'm also curious about the additional setup and maintenance required to keep a Windows server in compliance with campus security requirements. 

If you have any thoughts, warnings, or suggestions, please send them my way!

Thanks,

James Hixon
Database Administrator
Graduate School of Education
<a href="tel:510-642-5031" value="+15106425031" target="_blank">510-642-5031



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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Graham Patterson
In reply to this post by James Hixon

If Windows Server is an option, I'd get a VPS instance from IST. You can
then scale it up if you need more 'hardware'. A proper Windows server is
a different financial (and serviceability) league from a Mac Mini.

What are your backup and recovery needs? Can you wait to get a new Mini
and restore onto it, or just put a hosed database back on a running system?

This is assuming you want an isolated FM server, and there are no shared
options available to you.

Graham

On 12/4/15 3:49 PM, James Hixon wrote:

> Greetings Micronet,
>
> My department is upgrading our FileMaker 11 Server to FileMaker 14 and
> considering whether to replace our hardware with a 2014 Mac Mini or a
> Dell/Lenovo Windows 2012 Server.
>
> Although the most recent Mac Minis are not server-grade and do not
> technically meet FM 14 Server's recommended specs, I tend to think it
> would be ok for our volume of users/transactions (about 25 databases,
> about 15 users, no WebDirect). However, I'm compelled by the robustness,
> flexibility, and upgradeability that the less expensive Windows options
> offer.
>
> I'm wondering if anyone can speak to their experience hosting FileMaker
> 14 databases on a 2014 i5 or i7 dual-core Mac Mini.
>
> I'm also curious about the additional setup and maintenance required to
> keep a Windows server in compliance with campus security requirements.
>
> If you have any thoughts, warnings, or suggestions, please send them my way!
>
> Thanks,
>
> James Hixon
> Database Administrator
> Graduate School of Education
> [hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
> 510-642-5031
>
>
>
>  
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> The following was automatically added to this message by the list server:
>
> To learn more about Micronet, including how to subscribe to or unsubscribe from its mailing list and how to find out about upcoming meetings, please visit the Micronet Web site:
>
> http://micronet.berkeley.edu
>
> Messages you send to this mailing list are public and world-viewable, and the list's archives can be browsed and searched on the Internet.  This means these messages can be viewed by (among others) your bosses, prospective employers, and people who have known you in the past.
>
> ANNOUNCEMENTS: To send announcements to the Micronet list, please use the [hidden email] list.
>


--
Graham Patterson, Systems Administrator
Rm 111, Lawrence Hall of Science, UC Berkeley   510-643-1984
"...past the iguana, the tyrannosaurus, the mastodon, the mathematical
puzzles, and the meteorite..." - used to be the directions to my office.

 
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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Richard DeShong-2
In reply to this post by Jack Shnell
I strongly suggest going the ucb virtual server route.  I support two of them.  The larger has typically about 30 people connected and the specs for each are:  1 cpu and 2 gb ram.  That's it.  They are both Ver 11 right now, but I'd suspect that without WebDirect, you could get away with essentially the same specs, especially since your usage load is very light.

The cost is reasonable ( <$35/mo ), considering that your server is now in the ucb data center, which means you get security and all of your data stays on campus (think gb network).

On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:31 PM, Jack M. SHNELL <[hidden email]> wrote:
Thanks, Greg.  I'd also suggest taking a look at the IST Virtual Private Server service ([hidden email]).  The campus service may be a less expensive alternative, and easier to set up.

Jack Shnell
Senior Storage System Administrator
IST Platform Services, Storage and Backup Group
642-1188

On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:16 PM, Greg MERRITT <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hi James,

To toss out another option:

Through a combination of particular (and peculiar) circumstances, our group has developed a severe allergy to hardware. It's so bad that we fear it's contagious. ;)  Basically, we can focus loads more on what we do best, and never spend effort, time, & money on the care & feeding of hardware.

There's a bit of a learning curve, but I don't think we're ever going back. Some quick Googling...


...suggests that you could fire up a Windows instance in AWS and go full speed ahead with a FM installation. I suspect it's quite doable in Azure & Google, too.

Well, something to consider...once you make the jump, you'll never have to negotiate a hardware purchase / server replacement again! 🙆

-Greg



On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 3:49 PM, James Hixon <[hidden email]> wrote:
Greetings Micronet,

My department is upgrading our FileMaker 11 Server to FileMaker 14 and considering whether to replace our hardware with a 2014 Mac Mini or a Dell/Lenovo Windows 2012 Server. 

Although the most recent Mac Minis are not server-grade and do not technically meet FM 14 Server's recommended specs, I tend to think it would be ok for our volume of users/transactions (about 25 databases, about 15 users, no WebDirect). However, I'm compelled by the robustness, flexibility, and upgradeability that the less expensive Windows options offer.

I'm wondering if anyone can speak to their experience hosting FileMaker 14 databases on a 2014 i5 or i7 dual-core Mac Mini. 

I'm also curious about the additional setup and maintenance required to keep a Windows server in compliance with campus security requirements. 

If you have any thoughts, warnings, or suggestions, please send them my way!

Thanks,

James Hixon
Database Administrator
Graduate School of Education
<a href="tel:510-642-5031" value="+15106425031" target="_blank">510-642-5031



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--
Richard DeShong, Systems Analyst, Athletic Study Center, U.C.Berkeley
164 Chavez Student Center, Berkeley, CA, 94720-4220
510-642-5123     asc.berkeley.edu


 
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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Greg Merritt
...and if you can farm out the Windows patches/admin, you've really got it made!! :)

-Greg

 
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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

James Hixon
In reply to this post by Richard DeShong-2
Thanks to all for your suggestions thus far. I had not considered VPS and was unaware of IST offerings, so I'll need to give this more thought.

Graham, can you elaborate on this statement: "A proper Windows server is a different financial (and serviceability) league from a Mac Mini." What would you identify as the serviceability requirements that distinguish it from the Mac Mini, particularly in the campus context?

Thanks again, and happy Friday!



James Hixon
Database Administrator
Graduate School of Education
510-642-5031


On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:51 PM, Richard DESHONG <[hidden email]> wrote:
I strongly suggest going the ucb virtual server route.  I support two of them.  The larger has typically about 30 people connected and the specs for each are:  1 cpu and 2 gb ram.  That's it.  They are both Ver 11 right now, but I'd suspect that without WebDirect, you could get away with essentially the same specs, especially since your usage load is very light.

The cost is reasonable ( <$35/mo ), considering that your server is now in the ucb data center, which means you get security and all of your data stays on campus (think gb network).

On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:31 PM, Jack M. SHNELL <[hidden email]> wrote:
Thanks, Greg.  I'd also suggest taking a look at the IST Virtual Private Server service ([hidden email]).  The campus service may be a less expensive alternative, and easier to set up.

Jack Shnell
Senior Storage System Administrator
IST Platform Services, Storage and Backup Group
642-1188

On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:16 PM, Greg MERRITT <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hi James,

To toss out another option:

Through a combination of particular (and peculiar) circumstances, our group has developed a severe allergy to hardware. It's so bad that we fear it's contagious. ;)  Basically, we can focus loads more on what we do best, and never spend effort, time, & money on the care & feeding of hardware.

There's a bit of a learning curve, but I don't think we're ever going back. Some quick Googling...


...suggests that you could fire up a Windows instance in AWS and go full speed ahead with a FM installation. I suspect it's quite doable in Azure & Google, too.

Well, something to consider...once you make the jump, you'll never have to negotiate a hardware purchase / server replacement again! 🙆

-Greg



On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 3:49 PM, James Hixon <[hidden email]> wrote:
Greetings Micronet,

My department is upgrading our FileMaker 11 Server to FileMaker 14 and considering whether to replace our hardware with a 2014 Mac Mini or a Dell/Lenovo Windows 2012 Server. 

Although the most recent Mac Minis are not server-grade and do not technically meet FM 14 Server's recommended specs, I tend to think it would be ok for our volume of users/transactions (about 25 databases, about 15 users, no WebDirect). However, I'm compelled by the robustness, flexibility, and upgradeability that the less expensive Windows options offer.

I'm wondering if anyone can speak to their experience hosting FileMaker 14 databases on a 2014 i5 or i7 dual-core Mac Mini. 

I'm also curious about the additional setup and maintenance required to keep a Windows server in compliance with campus security requirements. 

If you have any thoughts, warnings, or suggestions, please send them my way!

Thanks,

James Hixon
Database Administrator
Graduate School of Education
<a href="tel:510-642-5031" value="+15106425031" target="_blank">510-642-5031



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--
Richard DeShong, Systems Analyst, Athletic Study Center, U.C.Berkeley
164 Chavez Student Center, Berkeley, CA, 94720-4220
<a href="tel:510-642-5123" value="+15106425123" target="_blank">510-642-5123     asc.berkeley.edu



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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Richard DeShong-2
In reply to this post by Greg Merritt
Unfortunately, IST charges $100/mo for that.  Since I use RDP to connect to the FM admin console, it quite easy for me to take care of the updates and such.

On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:58 PM, Greg MERRITT <[hidden email]> wrote:
...and if you can farm out the Windows patches/admin, you've really got it made!! :)

-Greg


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--
Richard DeShong, Systems Analyst, Athletic Study Center, U.C.Berkeley
164 Chavez Student Center, Berkeley, CA, 94720-4220
510-642-5123     asc.berkeley.edu


 
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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Richard DeShong-2
In reply to this post by James Hixon
The biggest point, in the campus context, is that your building is not a data center.

This means a bunch of things, here are two:

1) Campus IT resource allocation after "something" happens is going to heavily favor the data center.

2) Maintenance decisions related to power are managed differently - meaning plans aspire towards hours or minutes, rather than days.

On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 5:02 PM, James Hixon <[hidden email]> wrote:
Thanks to all for your suggestions thus far. I had not considered VPS and was unaware of IST offerings, so I'll need to give this more thought.

Graham, can you elaborate on this statement: "A proper Windows server is a different financial (and serviceability) league from a Mac Mini." What would you identify as the serviceability requirements that distinguish it from the Mac Mini, particularly in the campus context?

Thanks again, and happy Friday!



James Hixon
Database Administrator
Graduate School of Education
510-642-5031


On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:51 PM, Richard DESHONG <[hidden email]> wrote:
I strongly suggest going the ucb virtual server route.  I support two of them.  The larger has typically about 30 people connected and the specs for each are:  1 cpu and 2 gb ram.  That's it.  They are both Ver 11 right now, but I'd suspect that without WebDirect, you could get away with essentially the same specs, especially since your usage load is very light.

The cost is reasonable ( <$35/mo ), considering that your server is now in the ucb data center, which means you get security and all of your data stays on campus (think gb network).

On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:31 PM, Jack M. SHNELL <[hidden email]> wrote:
Thanks, Greg.  I'd also suggest taking a look at the IST Virtual Private Server service ([hidden email]).  The campus service may be a less expensive alternative, and easier to set up.

Jack Shnell
Senior Storage System Administrator
IST Platform Services, Storage and Backup Group
642-1188

On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:16 PM, Greg MERRITT <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hi James,

To toss out another option:

Through a combination of particular (and peculiar) circumstances, our group has developed a severe allergy to hardware. It's so bad that we fear it's contagious. ;)  Basically, we can focus loads more on what we do best, and never spend effort, time, & money on the care & feeding of hardware.

There's a bit of a learning curve, but I don't think we're ever going back. Some quick Googling...


...suggests that you could fire up a Windows instance in AWS and go full speed ahead with a FM installation. I suspect it's quite doable in Azure & Google, too.

Well, something to consider...once you make the jump, you'll never have to negotiate a hardware purchase / server replacement again! 🙆

-Greg



On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 3:49 PM, James Hixon <[hidden email]> wrote:
Greetings Micronet,

My department is upgrading our FileMaker 11 Server to FileMaker 14 and considering whether to replace our hardware with a 2014 Mac Mini or a Dell/Lenovo Windows 2012 Server. 

Although the most recent Mac Minis are not server-grade and do not technically meet FM 14 Server's recommended specs, I tend to think it would be ok for our volume of users/transactions (about 25 databases, about 15 users, no WebDirect). However, I'm compelled by the robustness, flexibility, and upgradeability that the less expensive Windows options offer.

I'm wondering if anyone can speak to their experience hosting FileMaker 14 databases on a 2014 i5 or i7 dual-core Mac Mini. 

I'm also curious about the additional setup and maintenance required to keep a Windows server in compliance with campus security requirements. 

If you have any thoughts, warnings, or suggestions, please send them my way!

Thanks,

James Hixon
Database Administrator
Graduate School of Education
<a href="tel:510-642-5031" value="+15106425031" target="_blank">510-642-5031



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--
Richard DeShong, Systems Analyst, Athletic Study Center, U.C.Berkeley
164 Chavez Student Center, Berkeley, CA, 94720-4220
<a href="tel:510-642-5123" value="+15106425123" target="_blank">510-642-5123     asc.berkeley.edu



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Richard DeShong, Systems Analyst, Athletic Study Center, U.C.Berkeley
164 Chavez Student Center, Berkeley, CA, 94720-4220
510-642-5123     asc.berkeley.edu


 
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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Graham Patterson
In reply to this post by James Hixon

This all depends on what level of service you aim to provide. I usually
aim for 99.9% (roughly 8 hours downtime a year) for services where I
have control. We are a 7 days a week operation. If your leeway for
having a system off-line is larger then you have more scope for
different equipment.

A Mac Mini, even with Apple care, is not a quick unit to repair. They
are better than the earlier white versions, but you are likely looking
at using an alternate unit to avoid outage. The same applies to using a
Windows small desktop chassis as a 'server'. You do not have
hot-swappable parts, little or no redundancy in drives or network or
power. You really need a near-line spare for minimal service interruption.

If you move up to true server hardware, you start to get faster drive
options, especially if you need high capacity/redundancy at a reasonable
cost, more network ports, more hot-swappable parts, and often very good
same-day or over-night parts support. If you are running a single
application, then the i5/i7/Xeon preference is probably moot.

Traditional servers can easily come in at $3,000+ with a lifetime of 4
years. You will not get more than 4 years of warranty on desktop devices
either. So your (re-)purchase cycle follows your warranty.

We started moving our physical servers to IST's VPS service as they
reached front-line end of life. The primary web server moved to Pantheon
this past week, I have a couple of 'appliance' services on Windows
servers in the VPS system, and we have one Linux system.

Windows admin is pretty minor, especially if you run a lean system with
one 'appliance' application/database per system. OS patches usually go
in on Thursday nights automatically. That gives me a couple of days to
test using a local VM under VMWare or VirtualBox. The applications get
updated as and when the vendor makes releases. Linux systems do auto
updates too.  Updates are not the nightmare they used to be.

The nice thing about the VPS service is that you can scale CPU, memory,
and disk performance according to need. You do have to look at your
backup/recovery options, but then you have to do that with any system.
The downside to any cloud system is that you have to pay the rent. Every
month.

There is a cut-off point. If you have big CPU intensive jobs that
benefit from more CPU cores, then a physical server may do a better job.
Especially if you have the funding model to replace hardware in big
chunks every few years. Smaller 'appliance' type needs which can run on
moderate CPU, memory, and storage actually compete well with physical
devices. If you need to be able to ramp up service for part of the year
- maybe the Feb-June admissions period - then the virtual server can do
that. Remember, the environment they run on is being invisibly
maintained and updated for you.

A bit rambling, but I think I have expanded on what you asked.


Graham


On 12/4/2015 5:02 PM, James Hixon wrote:

> Thanks to all for your suggestions thus far. I had not considered VPS
> and was unaware of IST offerings, so I'll need to give this more thought.
>
> Graham, can you elaborate on this statement: "A proper Windows server is
> a different financial (and serviceability) league from a Mac Mini." What
> would you identify as the serviceability requirements that distinguish
> it from the Mac Mini, particularly in the campus context?
>
> Thanks again, and happy Friday!
>
>
>
> James Hixon
> Database Administrator
> Graduate School of Education
> [hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
> 510-642-5031
>
>
> On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:51 PM, Richard DESHONG <[hidden email]
> <mailto:[hidden email]>> wrote:
>
>     I strongly suggest going the ucb virtual server route.  I support
>     two of them.  The larger has typically about 30 people connected and
>     the specs for each are:  1 cpu and 2 gb ram.  That's it.  They are
>     both Ver 11 right now, but I'd suspect that without WebDirect, you
>     could get away with essentially the same specs, especially since
>     your usage load is very light.
>
>     The cost is reasonable ( <$35/mo ), considering that your server is
>     now in the ucb data center, which means you get security and all of
>     your data stays on campus (think gb network).
>
>     On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:31 PM, Jack M. SHNELL <[hidden email]
>     <mailto:[hidden email]>> wrote:
>
>         Thanks, Greg.  I'd also suggest taking a look at the IST Virtual
>         Private Server service ([hidden email]
>         <mailto:[hidden email]>).  The campus service may be a
>         less expensive alternative, and easier to set up.
>
>         Jack Shnell
>         Senior Storage System Administrator
>         IST Platform Services, Storage and Backup Group
>         642-1188
>
>         On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:16 PM, Greg MERRITT
>         <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>> wrote:
>
>             Hi James,
>
>             To toss out another option:
>
>             Through a combination of particular (and peculiar)
>             circumstances, our group has developed a severe allergy to
>             hardware. It's so bad that we fear it's contagious. ;)
>               Basically, we can focus loads more on what we do best, and
>             never spend effort, time, & money on the care & feeding of
>             hardware.
>
>             There's a bit of a learning curve, but I don't think we're
>             ever going back. Some quick Googling...
>
>                 http://google.com/search?q=filemaker+aws
>
>
>             ...suggests that you could fire up a Windows instance in AWS
>             and go full speed ahead with a FM installation. I suspect
>             it's quite doable in Azure & Google, too.
>
>             Well, something to consider...once you make the jump, you'll
>             never have to negotiate a hardware purchase / server
>             replacement again! 🙆
>
>             -Greg
>
>
>
>             On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 3:49 PM, James Hixon
>             <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>> wrote:
>
>                 Greetings Micronet,
>
>                 My department is upgrading our FileMaker 11 Server to
>                 FileMaker 14 and considering whether to replace our
>                 hardware with a 2014 Mac Mini or a Dell/Lenovo Windows
>                 2012 Server.
>
>                 Although the most recent Mac Minis are not server-grade
>                 and do not technically meet FM 14 Server's recommended
>                 specs, I tend to think it would be ok for our volume of
>                 users/transactions (about 25 databases, about 15 users,
>                 no WebDirect). However, I'm compelled by the robustness,
>                 flexibility, and upgradeability that the less expensive
>                 Windows options offer.
>
>                 I'm wondering if anyone can speak to their experience
>                 hosting FileMaker 14 databases on a 2014 i5 or i7
>                 dual-core Mac Mini.
>
>                 I'm also curious about the additional setup and
>                 maintenance required to keep a Windows server in
>                 compliance with campus security requirements.
>
>                 If you have any thoughts, warnings, or suggestions,
>                 please send them my way!
>
>                 Thanks,
>
>                 James Hixon
>                 Database Administrator
>                 Graduate School of Education
>                 [hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>                 510-642-5031 <tel:510-642-5031>
>
>
>
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>         Messages you send to this mailing list are public and
>         world-viewable, and the list's archives can be browsed and
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>     --
>     Richard DeShong, Systems Analyst, Athletic Study Center, U.C.Berkeley
>     164 Chavez Student Center, Berkeley, CA, 94720-4220
>     510-642-5123 <tel:510-642-5123> asc.berkeley.edu
>     <http://asc.berkeley.edu>
>
>
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--
Graham Patterson, Systems Administrator
Lawrence Hall of Science, UC Berkeley   510-643-1984
"...past the iguana, the tyrannosaurus, the mastodon,
the mathematical puzzles, and the meteorite..." - used to be the
directions to my office.

 
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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Richard DeShong-2
Thanks, Graham, for the details - they match with the way I think about the issue.

Also, in a previous post of this conversation, I posted "Campus Context" issues related to using the data center, instead local dept space:
1) Campus IT resource allocation after "something" happens.
2) Maintenance decisions related to power are managed differently.

Another Campus Context point:  You can also use the data center to host your physical server.  This would be a good option is you found after testing that performance was negatively affected by switching to a virtual environment.

A point about "you have to pay the rent. Every month":  If you decide you need a dept server, then you should have a purchase and replacement amount in your budget going forward.  Using Graham's numbers of "at least $3000+", and a 4-yr replacement cycle, that's $62.50 per month.  Using the 2.8GHz Mac Mini:  $980 (no kb/monitor) / 48 = $20/month.

I mentioned in the earlier post that James could probably get away with 1cpu / 2GB mem, which is $35/month.  This is no brainer.

To James:  just go to estimator.berkeley.edu, order up a system with 1cpu 2GB mem, 40GB system drive, and enough data drive to store at least triple your db size.  At this point, do not order the maintenance. Set it up and test the speed.

If you need any help in the setup, just contact me off-list.  I've done it a number of times.


On Sat, Dec 5, 2015 at 9:24 AM, Graham Patterson <[hidden email]> wrote:

This all depends on what level of service you aim to provide. I usually
aim for 99.9% (roughly 8 hours downtime a year) for services where I
have control. We are a 7 days a week operation. If your leeway for
having a system off-line is larger then you have more scope for
different equipment.

A Mac Mini, even with Apple care, is not a quick unit to repair. They
are better than the earlier white versions, but you are likely looking
at using an alternate unit to avoid outage. The same applies to using a
Windows small desktop chassis as a 'server'. You do not have
hot-swappable parts, little or no redundancy in drives or network or
power. You really need a near-line spare for minimal service interruption.

If you move up to true server hardware, you start to get faster drive
options, especially if you need high capacity/redundancy at a reasonable
cost, more network ports, more hot-swappable parts, and often very good
same-day or over-night parts support. If you are running a single
application, then the i5/i7/Xeon preference is probably moot.

Traditional servers can easily come in at $3,000+ with a lifetime of 4
years. You will not get more than 4 years of warranty on desktop devices
either. So your (re-)purchase cycle follows your warranty.

We started moving our physical servers to IST's VPS service as they
reached front-line end of life. The primary web server moved to Pantheon
this past week, I have a couple of 'appliance' services on Windows
servers in the VPS system, and we have one Linux system.

Windows admin is pretty minor, especially if you run a lean system with
one 'appliance' application/database per system. OS patches usually go
in on Thursday nights automatically. That gives me a couple of days to
test using a local VM under VMWare or VirtualBox. The applications get
updated as and when the vendor makes releases. Linux systems do auto
updates too.  Updates are not the nightmare they used to be.

The nice thing about the VPS service is that you can scale CPU, memory,
and disk performance according to need. You do have to look at your
backup/recovery options, but then you have to do that with any system.
The downside to any cloud system is that you have to pay the rent. Every
month.

There is a cut-off point. If you have big CPU intensive jobs that
benefit from more CPU cores, then a physical server may do a better job.
Especially if you have the funding model to replace hardware in big
chunks every few years. Smaller 'appliance' type needs which can run on
moderate CPU, memory, and storage actually compete well with physical
devices. If you need to be able to ramp up service for part of the year
- maybe the Feb-June admissions period - then the virtual server can do
that. Remember, the environment they run on is being invisibly
maintained and updated for you.

A bit rambling, but I think I have expanded on what you asked.


Graham


On 12/4/2015 5:02 PM, James Hixon wrote:
> Thanks to all for your suggestions thus far. I had not considered VPS
> and was unaware of IST offerings, so I'll need to give this more thought.
>
> Graham, can you elaborate on this statement: "A proper Windows server is
> a different financial (and serviceability) league from a Mac Mini." What
> would you identify as the serviceability requirements that distinguish
> it from the Mac Mini, particularly in the campus context?
>
> Thanks again, and happy Friday!
>
>
>
> James Hixon
> Database Administrator
> Graduate School of Education
> [hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
> 510-642-5031
>
>
> On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:51 PM, Richard DESHONG <[hidden email]
> <mailto:[hidden email]>> wrote:
>
>     I strongly suggest going the ucb virtual server route.  I support
>     two of them.  The larger has typically about 30 people connected and
>     the specs for each are:  1 cpu and 2 gb ram.  That's it.  They are
>     both Ver 11 right now, but I'd suspect that without WebDirect, you
>     could get away with essentially the same specs, especially since
>     your usage load is very light.
>
>     The cost is reasonable ( <$35/mo ), considering that your server is
>     now in the ucb data center, which means you get security and all of
>     your data stays on campus (think gb network).
>
>     On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:31 PM, Jack M. SHNELL <[hidden email]
>     <mailto:[hidden email]>> wrote:
>
>         Thanks, Greg.  I'd also suggest taking a look at the IST Virtual
>         Private Server service ([hidden email]
>         <mailto:[hidden email]>).  The campus service may be a
>         less expensive alternative, and easier to set up.
>
>         Jack Shnell
>         Senior Storage System Administrator
>         IST Platform Services, Storage and Backup Group
>         642-1188
>
>         On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:16 PM, Greg MERRITT
>         <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>> wrote:
>
>             Hi James,
>
>             To toss out another option:
>
>             Through a combination of particular (and peculiar)
>             circumstances, our group has developed a severe allergy to
>             hardware. It's so bad that we fear it's contagious. ;)
>               Basically, we can focus loads more on what we do best, and
>             never spend effort, time, & money on the care & feeding of
>             hardware.
>
>             There's a bit of a learning curve, but I don't think we're
>             ever going back. Some quick Googling...
>
>                 http://google.com/search?q=filemaker+aws
>
>
>             ...suggests that you could fire up a Windows instance in AWS
>             and go full speed ahead with a FM installation. I suspect
>             it's quite doable in Azure & Google, too.
>
>             Well, something to consider...once you make the jump, you'll
>             never have to negotiate a hardware purchase / server
>             replacement again! 🙆
>
>             -Greg
>
>
>
>             On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 3:49 PM, James Hixon
>             <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>> wrote:
>
>                 Greetings Micronet,
>
>                 My department is upgrading our FileMaker 11 Server to
>                 FileMaker 14 and considering whether to replace our
>                 hardware with a 2014 Mac Mini or a Dell/Lenovo Windows
>                 2012 Server.
>
>                 Although the most recent Mac Minis are not server-grade
>                 and do not technically meet FM 14 Server's recommended
>                 specs, I tend to think it would be ok for our volume of
>                 users/transactions (about 25 databases, about 15 users,
>                 no WebDirect). However, I'm compelled by the robustness,
>                 flexibility, and upgradeability that the less expensive
>                 Windows options offer.
>
>                 I'm wondering if anyone can speak to their experience
>                 hosting FileMaker 14 databases on a 2014 i5 or i7
>                 dual-core Mac Mini.
>
>                 I'm also curious about the additional setup and
>                 maintenance required to keep a Windows server in
>                 compliance with campus security requirements.
>
>                 If you have any thoughts, warnings, or suggestions,
>                 please send them my way!
>
>                 Thanks,
>
>                 James Hixon
>                 Database Administrator
>                 Graduate School of Education
>                 [hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>                 510-642-5031 <tel:510-642-5031>
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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Graham Patterson

Richard - thanks for working through the numbers. I was too lazy 8-)

I still see some instances where grants will fund a physical server, but
not pay service fees (even co-lo costs). I interpret this to mean that
there is an audit requirement to be able to put a hand on the machine.
Fortunately the grant agencies are getting wise to the reality.

The initial cost of the equipment is not the whole story. I am lucky
enough to have a building generator, so I only have to supply UPS power
for under 60 seconds. But the batteries need to be replaced every few
years. Drives fail. Physical security issues have to be considered. The
'hidden' overhead adds up.

Six or eight years ago, the balance probably favored real hardware. In
the last three years or so, the balance has supported virtual machines.


Graham


On 12/7/15 2:18 PM, Richard DESHONG wrote:

> Thanks, Graham, for the details - they match with the way I think about
> the issue.
>
> Also, in a previous post of this conversation, I posted "Campus Context"
> issues related to using the data center, instead local dept space:
> 1) Campus IT resource allocation after "something" happens.
> 2) Maintenance decisions related to power are managed differently.
>
> Another Campus Context point:  You can also use the data center to host
> your physical server.  This would be a good option is you found after
> testing that performance was negatively affected by switching to a
> virtual environment.
>
> A point about "you have to pay the rent. Every month":  If you decide
> you need a dept server, then you should have a purchase and replacement
> amount in your budget going forward.  Using Graham's numbers of "at
> least $3000+", and a 4-yr replacement cycle, that's $62.50 per month.
> Using the 2.8GHz Mac Mini:  $980 (no kb/monitor) / 48 = $20/month.
>
> I mentioned in the earlier post that James could probably get away with
> 1cpu / 2GB mem, which is $35/month.  This is no brainer.
>
> To James:  just go to estimator.berkeley.edu
> <http://estimator.berkeley.edu>, order up a system with 1cpu 2GB mem,
> 40GB system drive, and enough data drive to store at least triple your
> db size.  At this point, do not order the maintenance. Set it up and
> test the speed.
>
> If you need any help in the setup, just contact me off-list.  I've done
> it a number of times.
>
>
> On Sat, Dec 5, 2015 at 9:24 AM, Graham Patterson <[hidden email]
> <mailto:[hidden email]>> wrote:
>
>
>     This all depends on what level of service you aim to provide. I usually
>     aim for 99.9% (roughly 8 hours downtime a year) for services where I
>     have control. We are a 7 days a week operation. If your leeway for
>     having a system off-line is larger then you have more scope for
>     different equipment.
>
>     A Mac Mini, even with Apple care, is not a quick unit to repair. They
>     are better than the earlier white versions, but you are likely looking
>     at using an alternate unit to avoid outage. The same applies to using a
>     Windows small desktop chassis as a 'server'. You do not have
>     hot-swappable parts, little or no redundancy in drives or network or
>     power. You really need a near-line spare for minimal service
>     interruption.
>
>     If you move up to true server hardware, you start to get faster drive
>     options, especially if you need high capacity/redundancy at a reasonable
>     cost, more network ports, more hot-swappable parts, and often very good
>     same-day or over-night parts support. If you are running a single
>     application, then the i5/i7/Xeon preference is probably moot.
>
>     Traditional servers can easily come in at $3,000+ with a lifetime of 4
>     years. You will not get more than 4 years of warranty on desktop devices
>     either. So your (re-)purchase cycle follows your warranty.
>
>     We started moving our physical servers to IST's VPS service as they
>     reached front-line end of life. The primary web server moved to Pantheon
>     this past week, I have a couple of 'appliance' services on Windows
>     servers in the VPS system, and we have one Linux system.
>
>     Windows admin is pretty minor, especially if you run a lean system with
>     one 'appliance' application/database per system. OS patches usually go
>     in on Thursday nights automatically. That gives me a couple of days to
>     test using a local VM under VMWare or VirtualBox. The applications get
>     updated as and when the vendor makes releases. Linux systems do auto
>     updates too.  Updates are not the nightmare they used to be.
>
>     The nice thing about the VPS service is that you can scale CPU, memory,
>     and disk performance according to need. You do have to look at your
>     backup/recovery options, but then you have to do that with any system.
>     The downside to any cloud system is that you have to pay the rent. Every
>     month.
>
>     There is a cut-off point. If you have big CPU intensive jobs that
>     benefit from more CPU cores, then a physical server may do a better job.
>     Especially if you have the funding model to replace hardware in big
>     chunks every few years. Smaller 'appliance' type needs which can run on
>     moderate CPU, memory, and storage actually compete well with physical
>     devices. If you need to be able to ramp up service for part of the year
>     - maybe the Feb-June admissions period - then the virtual server can do
>     that. Remember, the environment they run on is being invisibly
>     maintained and updated for you.
>
>     A bit rambling, but I think I have expanded on what you asked.
>
>
>     Graham
>
>
>     On 12/4/2015 5:02 PM, James Hixon wrote:
>     > Thanks to all for your suggestions thus far. I had not considered VPS
>     > and was unaware of IST offerings, so I'll need to give this more
>     thought.
>     >
>     > Graham, can you elaborate on this statement: "A proper Windows
>     server is
>     > a different financial (and serviceability) league from a Mac
>     Mini." What
>     > would you identify as the serviceability requirements that distinguish
>     > it from the Mac Mini, particularly in the campus context?
>     >
>     > Thanks again, and happy Friday!
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > James Hixon
>     > Database Administrator
>     > Graduate School of Education
>     > [hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>
>     > 510-642-5031
>     >
>     >
>     > On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:51 PM, Richard DESHONG
>     <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     > <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>> wrote:
>     >
>     >     I strongly suggest going the ucb virtual server route.  I support
>     >     two of them.  The larger has typically about 30 people
>     connected and
>     >     the specs for each are:  1 cpu and 2 gb ram.  That's it.  They are
>     >     both Ver 11 right now, but I'd suspect that without WebDirect, you
>     >     could get away with essentially the same specs, especially since
>     >     your usage load is very light.
>     >
>     >     The cost is reasonable ( <$35/mo ), considering that your
>     server is
>     >     now in the ucb data center, which means you get security and
>     all of
>     >     your data stays on campus (think gb network).
>     >
>     >     On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:31 PM, Jack M. SHNELL
>     <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     >     <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>>
>     wrote:
>     >
>     >         Thanks, Greg.  I'd also suggest taking a look at the IST
>     Virtual
>     >         Private Server service ([hidden email]
>     <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     >         <mailto:[hidden email]
>     <mailto:[hidden email]>>).  The campus service may be a
>     >         less expensive alternative, and easier to set up.
>     >
>     >         Jack Shnell
>     >         Senior Storage System Administrator
>     >         IST Platform Services, Storage and Backup Group
>     >         642-1188
>     >
>     >         On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:16 PM, Greg MERRITT
>     >         <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>> wrote:
>     >
>     >             Hi James,
>     >
>     >             To toss out another option:
>     >
>     >             Through a combination of particular (and peculiar)
>     >             circumstances, our group has developed a severe allergy to
>     >             hardware. It's so bad that we fear it's contagious. ;)
>     >               Basically, we can focus loads more on what we do
>     best, and
>     >             never spend effort, time, & money on the care & feeding of
>     >             hardware.
>     >
>     >             There's a bit of a learning curve, but I don't think we're
>     >             ever going back. Some quick Googling...
>     >
>     >                 http://google.com/search?q=filemaker+aws
>     >
>     >
>     >             ...suggests that you could fire up a Windows instance
>     in AWS
>     >             and go full speed ahead with a FM installation. I suspect
>     >             it's quite doable in Azure & Google, too.
>     >
>     >             Well, something to consider...once you make the jump,
>     you'll
>     >             never have to negotiate a hardware purchase / server
>     >             replacement again! 🙆
>     >
>     >             -Greg
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     >             On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 3:49 PM, James Hixon
>     >             <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>> wrote:
>     >
>     >                 Greetings Micronet,
>     >
>     >                 My department is upgrading our FileMaker 11 Server to
>     >                 FileMaker 14 and considering whether to replace our
>     >                 hardware with a 2014 Mac Mini or a Dell/Lenovo Windows
>     >                 2012 Server.
>     >
>     >                 Although the most recent Mac Minis are not
>     server-grade
>     >                 and do not technically meet FM 14 Server's recommended
>     >                 specs, I tend to think it would be ok for our
>     volume of
>     >                 users/transactions (about 25 databases, about 15
>     users,
>     >                 no WebDirect). However, I'm compelled by the
>     robustness,
>     >                 flexibility, and upgradeability that the less
>     expensive
>     >                 Windows options offer.
>     >
>     >                 I'm wondering if anyone can speak to their experience
>     >                 hosting FileMaker 14 databases on a 2014 i5 or i7
>     >                 dual-core Mac Mini.
>     >
>     >                 I'm also curious about the additional setup and
>     >                 maintenance required to keep a Windows server in
>     >                 compliance with campus security requirements.
>     >
>     >                 If you have any thoughts, warnings, or suggestions,
>     >                 please send them my way!
>     >
>     >                 Thanks,
>     >
>     >                 James Hixon
>     >                 Database Administrator
>     >                 Graduate School of Education
>     >                 [hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>
>     >                 510-642-5031 <tel:510-642-5031>
>     >
>     >
>     >
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>     >     --
>     >     Richard DeShong, Systems Analyst, Athletic Study Center,
>     U.C.Berkeley
>     >     164 Chavez Student Center, Berkeley, CA, 94720-4220
>     >     510-642-5123 <tel:510-642-5123> asc.berkeley.edu
>     <http://asc.berkeley.edu>
>     >     <http://asc.berkeley.edu>
>     >
>     >
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>     "...past the iguana, the tyrannosaurus, the mastodon,
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--
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Rm 111, Lawrence Hall of Science, UC Berkeley   510-643-1984
"...past the iguana, the tyrannosaurus, the mastodon, the mathematical
puzzles, and the meteorite..." - used to be the directions to my office.

 
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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Richard DeShong-2
Re:  "...a building generator, so I only have to supply UPS power for under 60 seconds."

This reminds me of a local city that I support that also has a generator.  Unfortunately, when a person accidentally trips a circuit breaker, the generator doesn't "kick in".  And since the circuit only supported a few servers, nobody noticed until the UPS ran down.  Darn.  We hadn't setup the email service to notify someone when a low-power ups event happened.

Re: "...initial cost of the equipment is not the whole story."

We are definitely on the same page here.  There a bunch of other costs associated with hardware.  My example was meant to show that the monthly rental of a VPS is essentially the same as the cost of just the box.  This, of course, is for a basic, single function, not heavily used server - which is exactly what the O.P. was asking about.

And thanks for pointing out the other "campus context" - that is, grant money with strings attached.


On Mon, Dec 7, 2015 at 3:10 PM, Graham Patterson <[hidden email]> wrote:

Richard - thanks for working through the numbers. I was too lazy 8-)

I still see some instances where grants will fund a physical server, but
not pay service fees (even co-lo costs). I interpret this to mean that
there is an audit requirement to be able to put a hand on the machine.
Fortunately the grant agencies are getting wise to the reality.

The initial cost of the equipment is not the whole story. I am lucky
enough to have a building generator, so I only have to supply UPS power
for under 60 seconds. But the batteries need to be replaced every few
years. Drives fail. Physical security issues have to be considered. The
'hidden' overhead adds up.

Six or eight years ago, the balance probably favored real hardware. In
the last three years or so, the balance has supported virtual machines.


Graham


On 12/7/15 2:18 PM, Richard DESHONG wrote:
> Thanks, Graham, for the details - they match with the way I think about
> the issue.
>
> Also, in a previous post of this conversation, I posted "Campus Context"
> issues related to using the data center, instead local dept space:
> 1) Campus IT resource allocation after "something" happens.
> 2) Maintenance decisions related to power are managed differently.
>
> Another Campus Context point:  You can also use the data center to host
> your physical server.  This would be a good option is you found after
> testing that performance was negatively affected by switching to a
> virtual environment.
>
> A point about "you have to pay the rent. Every month":  If you decide
> you need a dept server, then you should have a purchase and replacement
> amount in your budget going forward.  Using Graham's numbers of "at
> least $3000+", and a 4-yr replacement cycle, that's $62.50 per month.
> Using the 2.8GHz Mac Mini:  $980 (no kb/monitor) / 48 = $20/month.
>
> I mentioned in the earlier post that James could probably get away with
> 1cpu / 2GB mem, which is $35/month.  This is no brainer.
>
> To James:  just go to estimator.berkeley.edu
> <http://estimator.berkeley.edu>, order up a system with 1cpu 2GB mem,
> 40GB system drive, and enough data drive to store at least triple your
> db size.  At this point, do not order the maintenance. Set it up and
> test the speed.
>
> If you need any help in the setup, just contact me off-list.  I've done
> it a number of times.
>
>
> On Sat, Dec 5, 2015 at 9:24 AM, Graham Patterson <[hidden email]
> <mailto:[hidden email]>> wrote:
>
>
>     This all depends on what level of service you aim to provide. I usually
>     aim for 99.9% (roughly 8 hours downtime a year) for services where I
>     have control. We are a 7 days a week operation. If your leeway for
>     having a system off-line is larger then you have more scope for
>     different equipment.
>
>     A Mac Mini, even with Apple care, is not a quick unit to repair. They
>     are better than the earlier white versions, but you are likely looking
>     at using an alternate unit to avoid outage. The same applies to using a
>     Windows small desktop chassis as a 'server'. You do not have
>     hot-swappable parts, little or no redundancy in drives or network or
>     power. You really need a near-line spare for minimal service
>     interruption.
>
>     If you move up to true server hardware, you start to get faster drive
>     options, especially if you need high capacity/redundancy at a reasonable
>     cost, more network ports, more hot-swappable parts, and often very good
>     same-day or over-night parts support. If you are running a single
>     application, then the i5/i7/Xeon preference is probably moot.
>
>     Traditional servers can easily come in at $3,000+ with a lifetime of 4
>     years. You will not get more than 4 years of warranty on desktop devices
>     either. So your (re-)purchase cycle follows your warranty.
>
>     We started moving our physical servers to IST's VPS service as they
>     reached front-line end of life. The primary web server moved to Pantheon
>     this past week, I have a couple of 'appliance' services on Windows
>     servers in the VPS system, and we have one Linux system.
>
>     Windows admin is pretty minor, especially if you run a lean system with
>     one 'appliance' application/database per system. OS patches usually go
>     in on Thursday nights automatically. That gives me a couple of days to
>     test using a local VM under VMWare or VirtualBox. The applications get
>     updated as and when the vendor makes releases. Linux systems do auto
>     updates too.  Updates are not the nightmare they used to be.
>
>     The nice thing about the VPS service is that you can scale CPU, memory,
>     and disk performance according to need. You do have to look at your
>     backup/recovery options, but then you have to do that with any system.
>     The downside to any cloud system is that you have to pay the rent. Every
>     month.
>
>     There is a cut-off point. If you have big CPU intensive jobs that
>     benefit from more CPU cores, then a physical server may do a better job.
>     Especially if you have the funding model to replace hardware in big
>     chunks every few years. Smaller 'appliance' type needs which can run on
>     moderate CPU, memory, and storage actually compete well with physical
>     devices. If you need to be able to ramp up service for part of the year
>     - maybe the Feb-June admissions period - then the virtual server can do
>     that. Remember, the environment they run on is being invisibly
>     maintained and updated for you.
>
>     A bit rambling, but I think I have expanded on what you asked.
>
>
>     Graham
>
>
>     On 12/4/2015 5:02 PM, James Hixon wrote:
>     > Thanks to all for your suggestions thus far. I had not considered VPS
>     > and was unaware of IST offerings, so I'll need to give this more
>     thought.
>     >
>     > Graham, can you elaborate on this statement: "A proper Windows
>     server is
>     > a different financial (and serviceability) league from a Mac
>     Mini." What
>     > would you identify as the serviceability requirements that distinguish
>     > it from the Mac Mini, particularly in the campus context?
>     >
>     > Thanks again, and happy Friday!
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > James Hixon
>     > Database Administrator
>     > Graduate School of Education
>     > [hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>
>     > 510-642-5031
>     >
>     >
>     > On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:51 PM, Richard DESHONG
>     <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     > <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>> wrote:
>     >
>     >     I strongly suggest going the ucb virtual server route.  I support
>     >     two of them.  The larger has typically about 30 people
>     connected and
>     >     the specs for each are:  1 cpu and 2 gb ram.  That's it.  They are
>     >     both Ver 11 right now, but I'd suspect that without WebDirect, you
>     >     could get away with essentially the same specs, especially since
>     >     your usage load is very light.
>     >
>     >     The cost is reasonable ( <$35/mo ), considering that your
>     server is
>     >     now in the ucb data center, which means you get security and
>     all of
>     >     your data stays on campus (think gb network).
>     >
>     >     On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:31 PM, Jack M. SHNELL
>     <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     >     <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>>
>     wrote:
>     >
>     >         Thanks, Greg.  I'd also suggest taking a look at the IST
>     Virtual
>     >         Private Server service ([hidden email]
>     <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     >         <mailto:[hidden email]
>     <mailto:[hidden email]>>).  The campus service may be a
>     >         less expensive alternative, and easier to set up.
>     >
>     >         Jack Shnell
>     >         Senior Storage System Administrator
>     >         IST Platform Services, Storage and Backup Group
>     >         642-1188
>     >
>     >         On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 4:16 PM, Greg MERRITT
>     >         <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>> wrote:
>     >
>     >             Hi James,
>     >
>     >             To toss out another option:
>     >
>     >             Through a combination of particular (and peculiar)
>     >             circumstances, our group has developed a severe allergy to
>     >             hardware. It's so bad that we fear it's contagious. ;)
>     >               Basically, we can focus loads more on what we do
>     best, and
>     >             never spend effort, time, & money on the care & feeding of
>     >             hardware.
>     >
>     >             There's a bit of a learning curve, but I don't think we're
>     >             ever going back. Some quick Googling...
>     >
>     >                 http://google.com/search?q=filemaker+aws
>     >
>     >
>     >             ...suggests that you could fire up a Windows instance
>     in AWS
>     >             and go full speed ahead with a FM installation. I suspect
>     >             it's quite doable in Azure & Google, too.
>     >
>     >             Well, something to consider...once you make the jump,
>     you'll
>     >             never have to negotiate a hardware purchase / server
>     >             replacement again! 🙆
>     >
>     >             -Greg
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     >             On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 3:49 PM, James Hixon
>     >             <[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>> wrote:
>     >
>     >                 Greetings Micronet,
>     >
>     >                 My department is upgrading our FileMaker 11 Server to
>     >                 FileMaker 14 and considering whether to replace our
>     >                 hardware with a 2014 Mac Mini or a Dell/Lenovo Windows
>     >                 2012 Server.
>     >
>     >                 Although the most recent Mac Minis are not
>     server-grade
>     >                 and do not technically meet FM 14 Server's recommended
>     >                 specs, I tend to think it would be ok for our
>     volume of
>     >                 users/transactions (about 25 databases, about 15
>     users,
>     >                 no WebDirect). However, I'm compelled by the
>     robustness,
>     >                 flexibility, and upgradeability that the less
>     expensive
>     >                 Windows options offer.
>     >
>     >                 I'm wondering if anyone can speak to their experience
>     >                 hosting FileMaker 14 databases on a 2014 i5 or i7
>     >                 dual-core Mac Mini.
>     >
>     >                 I'm also curious about the additional setup and
>     >                 maintenance required to keep a Windows server in
>     >                 compliance with campus security requirements.
>     >
>     >                 If you have any thoughts, warnings, or suggestions,
>     >                 please send them my way!
>     >
>     >                 Thanks,
>     >
>     >                 James Hixon
>     >                 Database Administrator
>     >                 Graduate School of Education
>     >                 [hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>
>     <mailto:[hidden email] <mailto:[hidden email]>>
>     >                 510-642-5031 <tel:510-642-5031>
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     >
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>     >     --
>     >     Richard DeShong, Systems Analyst, Athletic Study Center,
>     U.C.Berkeley
>     >     164 Chavez Student Center, Berkeley, CA, 94720-4220
>     >     510-642-5123 <tel:510-642-5123> asc.berkeley.edu
>     <http://asc.berkeley.edu>
>     >     <http://asc.berkeley.edu>
>     >
>     >
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>     --
>     Graham Patterson, Systems Administrator
>     Lawrence Hall of Science, UC Berkeley   510-643-1984
>     "...past the iguana, the tyrannosaurus, the mastodon,
>     the mathematical puzzles, and the meteorite..." - used to be the
>     directions to my office.
>
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> Richard DeShong, Systems Analyst, Athletic Study Center, U.C.Berkeley
> 164 Chavez Student Center, Berkeley, CA, 94720-4220
> 510-642-5123     asc.berkeley.edu <http://asc.berkeley.edu>


--
Graham Patterson, Systems Administrator
Rm 111, Lawrence Hall of Science, UC Berkeley   510-643-1984
"...past the iguana, the tyrannosaurus, the mastodon, the mathematical
puzzles, and the meteorite..." - used to be the directions to my office.



--
Richard DeShong, Systems Analyst, Athletic Study Center, U.C.Berkeley
164 Chavez Student Center, Berkeley, CA, 94720-4220
510-642-5123     asc.berkeley.edu


 
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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

Greg Merritt
In reply to this post by Graham Patterson
On Mon, Dec 7, 2015 at 3:10 PM, Graham Patterson <[hidden email]> wrote:
I still see some instances where grants will fund a physical server, but
not pay service fees (even co-lo costs). I interpret this to mean that
there is an audit requirement to be able to put a hand on the machine.

So funny...we have basically the reverse situation: contractually forbidden from buying hardware, even an $800 laptop, but can pay for services. Go figure!

-Greg



 
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Re: [Micronet] FileMaker 14 Server Hardware

James Hixon
Thanks to all for the suggestions and for taking the time to explain the factors influencing your decisions to move to VPS. I'm planning to look into IST's VPS service. 

Out of curiosity -- is anyone running FM14 Server on a 2014 Mac Mini?

Best,
James

James Hixon
Database Administrator
Graduate School of Education
510-642-5031


On Mon, Dec 7, 2015 at 4:22 PM, Greg MERRITT <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Mon, Dec 7, 2015 at 3:10 PM, Graham Patterson <[hidden email]> wrote:
I still see some instances where grants will fund a physical server, but
not pay service fees (even co-lo costs). I interpret this to mean that
there is an audit requirement to be able to put a hand on the machine.

So funny...we have basically the reverse situation: contractually forbidden from buying hardware, even an $800 laptop, but can pay for services. Go figure!

-Greg




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