New Development PC (2012/2013)

My development PC was starting to get a bit “creaky”, so I decided it was time for a new one!

Lately I’d been getting quite a few instances of low memory, so that was the main reason for the new build. My motherboard already had it’s maximum 8GB of memory installed. I used to run a 4 disk RAID-10 back in the olden days when I had spinning drives, but since I’ve made the move to SSDs I’ve only had the one hard drive in there. So, the 4U rack case it was housed in was a slight case (pun not intended) of overkill! I looked around at the available mini-ITX boards, but the maximum amount of RAM I could install was 16GB. While that seems like a lot I didn’t want to restrict myself to only doubling up. I already had a micro-ATX case, originally intended for a new server build but now unused as I bought a HP micro server instead. When I looked at the available micro-ATX board I saw that they mostly supported 32GB RAM, decision made.

I’m sure my current SSD would have been just fine, but when building a new “production” machine I prefer to buy all new bits and re-purpose the old ones. The reason being that I like to keep the old machine running in parallel to the new one for a while so I can iron out any kinks and transfer all my data over the network. If I forget anything, it’s not big deal as I can just power up the old machine and pull the missing data across. It also allows me to transfer any settings over while still getting the benefit of a minty fresh windows install.

This is the parts list I decided to go with …

Type Make & Model Cost (inc VAT)
Motherboard Gigabyte GA-B75M-D3H Intel B75 (Socket 1155) Micro-ATX £42.95 (£51.54)
CPU Intel Core i7-3770 3.40Ghz (Ivy Bridge) Socket LGA1155 £181.66 (£217.99)
Memory 32GB Mushkin Enhanced Blackline Frostbyte £99.99 (£119.99)
Hard Drive OCZ Vertex 4 256GB SATA-III Solid State Hard Drive £141.66 (£169.99)
Case Fractal Design Core 1000 MicroATX Case n/a

The other benefit of building a new PC is that I get SATA3/USB3 interfaces.









I installed Windows 7 Ultimate from my USB Pen Drive (which I keep on my keyring). I can highly recommend creating a bootable USB Pen Drive as it speeds up the install drastically. I’ve heard of someone putting the install on an SSD, which speeds it up even more. So, about 15 minutes later I had a usable machine. The next step was to install all my required software. I used chocolatey for quite a lot of it, but some I had to use the full installer and click on buttons, pah!

Chocolatey is awesome. I needed subversion on my machine yesterday, so I fired up powershell, ran cinst sliksvn, restarted powershell and I was using command line subversion inside a couple of minutes later.

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