6 Replies Latest reply on Apr 12, 2009 1:17 PM by Bill McEachern

    Stand Alone Workstation vs. Server for Simulation

      We are upgrading our SWX package to include Simulation. Is it best to go with a stand alone workstation or a dedicated server for the Simulation application? We have had mixed recommendations.

      IT recommends a server so that they can support us in engineering.
      ADVANTAGES:

      *They can also shoot the RAM on the server much higher than the PC that we are specing out (up to 64 GB).
      *We can have multiple users work from the server and have studies run simultaneously.
      *may not need high end GPU since it is mostly RAM dependent.

      DISADVANTAGES:

      *will only be for simulation and not act as a modeling station.
      *IT is involved.....

      Engineering is leaning towards Stand Alone.
      ADVANTAGES:

      *Will also act as a SWX modeling station
      *no IT clutter
      *Engineering will be Admin

      *DISADVANTAGES:

      *one user at a time
      *may bog down SWX performance when running Simulation simultaneously

      We are looking at the Dell T7400
      dual Quad Xeon 3.0 Ghz
      XP 64
      32 GB RAM
      nVidia Quadro FX4800
      RAID 2x 160 GB 10K HDD

      We will run small assemblies (10 parts or so max.) and run mold analysis.

      Any Ideas??
        • Stand Alone Workstation vs. Server for Simulation
          Bill McEachern
          Sounds like you want a network license and decent hardware for the users. I have a quad core with 8 Gb and it works pretty good. I would recommend Corei7 as fast as you can afford with 8Gb of RAM more if you think it is required and decent video card (quadro's would be my recommendation).

          The server route seems sub-optimal as a person would have to physically go to the server and run SWX (so your IT guys don't understand how it works) and set up the job and run it. There is no capability to send a job off like NASTRAN to some remote server that will execute the job and send the results back.

          It is designed as a tool for use by individuals not compute servers.
          • Stand Alone Workstation vs. Server for Simulation
            Devon Sowell
            Hello Thai-

            I used XP64 for over a year and just switched to Vista64. I highly recommend Vista64 over XP64. Many devices and applications won't run on XP64 because of a lack of drivers. Vista64 has more device and driver support.

            Also, both XP64 & Vista64 support 128GB RAM, the trick is to find a motherboard that can accept that much.

            Good luck.
              • Stand Alone Workstation vs. Server for Simulation
                Bill:
                Yes, we are looking at making the user happy with the hardware. We want to minimize freezes and SWX out of memory errors. As I am a contractor here, I am currently using a Duo Core E6550 @ 2.33 Ghz, 2 GB or RAM, and an ATI 2400 XT. This is probably a PC that meets the minimal requirements for what I am currently working on (simple parts and assembles that do not have complex surfaces and mates). With projected projects and complexity of Simulation, Motion, FloWorks, and Surfacing, it's probably best to invest in a higher end system. With the server route, we don't want to succumb to the whims of IT. We want to deal with the issues directly.

                Devon:
                We are looking at Vista 64 with the XP 64 downgrade. This should allow us to transition into Vista later. Since we have a group of 4 that will have face time with this system, we should be able to transition to Vista pretty smoothly.

                Has anyone run into issues with Simulation being slow while retreiving files from a network. It seems that SWX modeling locks up or crashes when a license is being retreived from a server (from my experience). Once you load a Simulation analysis, should the program need to access any more part or assembly data from the network?