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Dell server

Joel,

What a week!  I sympathize-- I've always been in small companies and have done sysadmin work for my machine, the company servers and usually everyone else's machines for my entire programmer/ manager/ entrepreneur career.  And dealing with the telcos are the worst part.

By the way, no Xeon's until Jan 31?  Don't believe it.  I ordered a Dell Poweredge rack server (Xeon 2.4 gHz) on Jan 16 and got it on Jan 22. 

Voice of rationality
Sunday, January 26, 2003

Dell must hate me. *sob*

Joel Spolsky
Sunday, January 26, 2003

Ha!

Joel, have you considered asking around to find a local PC shop to replace Dell on your Rolodex?  I wonder of PC shops aren't like car repair shops; the national chains are standardized but the local ones are more reliable (usually).

Brent P. Newhall
Monday, January 27, 2003

Seriously considering that. The trick is to find the good small PC companies -- the guys who read Tom's Hardware all the time and actually have reasoned opinions about whether to use a Western Digital or a Hitachi hard drive...

Joel Spolsky
Monday, January 27, 2003

Joel - have you ever checked out www.sagelec.com?

Several people I've worked with have bought machines from them over the years with pretty good results. They seem to target the higher-end computer-literate vs joe consumer. One thing I've found notable about them is they're one of the few places that will readily sell you a box without any OS at all. That's been their policy for years. When I've day-dreamed on their site using their configurator vs doing the same on other sites like Dell's, it's been my impression that sagelec seems to have a wider variety of serious hardware available. For example, one of sagelec's _workstation_ configurations includes stuff like:

dual 2.6 Ghz Xeons, 533 FSB,
up to 4 GB rdram
multiple removable, hot-swappable drive canisters
multiple drives, including drives as large as146GB 10K rpm U320 scsi drive (holy crap! no, that's not wrong: 146GB)
multiple raid controllers, different raid levels pre-configured if desired
multiple nics, including GB nics
os choices include: <none>, RH 8.0, NT 4, W2K Pro, W XP Pro, RH 8-W2K dual boot, RH 8 - WXP dual boot
there's a bunch more, but the point here being to support my assertion that what these people consider to be a 'workstation' includes some pretty serious hardware options. Their servers are even 'heavier'.

When you figure out what you want to do about your folks' desktops at FogCreek and having hot-redundancy of their systems, you may want to check out sagelec.com, as it appears they may well be able to handle hefty or somewhat unusual configurations.

Perhaps other posters have some relevant pre and post-sale experience with sagelec and can indicate if it's been good or bad?

For the record, I don't work for them or have any connection to them, nor benefit in any way from your using them or not.

Good luck, Joel

anonQAguy
Monday, January 27, 2003

A former employer used to buy servers from SAG (www.sagelec.com) - 'used to' is the important part.

While some of the machines we got were excellent, some were down-right scary in how badly they were assembled. This included screws missing for add-in cards (which proceeded to bounce around the inside of the case during shipment) and stripped screws holding the motherboards in...

Support was equally inconsistant. At that point, their on-site service was contracted out. Every time one would show up it would be the same, "I've never worked on one of these [Sag] computers, let em see what I can do." THey usually ended up taking on the phone to the Sag people for a hour or so.

not this time
Tuesday, January 28, 2003

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