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from one computer to two

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I'm almost at the point where I am ready to purchase my second computer. I'm going to probably buy a dual xeon system which will then be my main rendering system. Then I will either use my existing cpu to do other work while I am waiting for renders or use it as a network renderer somehow.


But seeing as how I've never had 2 workstations at the same time I'm not sure what the best way to configure them will be. I will probably have 2 hard drives in the new system, and maybe add another drive to the existing system. One with the o.s. and all program files. Then the second drive will be for all my materials, library, and job files.


So, for anybody who uses 2 or more systems, what would be your recommendations as far as drive configurations for speed, reliability, ease of use, etc. I want to make it as easy as possible in the future to upgrade, or add machines, and not screw up the whole network. And if my server is busy computing a rendering, is it still possible to access project files from that computer to work on them?




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I have a dual workstation-workstation which is part of a 5 computer network. Network load has yet to be a problem with Max. Network rendering works best in all cases if the map files are in the same root/common folder on all rendering systems. When the network render opens the max file the maps needed are in the same directory path.


I use a 10/100 ethernet lan. Gigabite would be ideal, try to get that on your new mobo. Large file transfers, animations and such obviously move much faster, though not too bad on the 10/100. Really all you need is a point to point network between the two stations with a crossover connector or cable at this point, in particular if you decide to go Gigabite and have a 10/100 router for broadband.


My primary drives are sized for use of that workstation. The Power station has a 10,000rpm scsi 12g and a 19g 7,500rpm for the secondary. It has only the key applications installed. The other station has all of the software installed as the primary (license exchange) and all of the countless other apps. Primary 40g 7500, secondary 20gig for general storage and collection of files to be archived.


It can be a good approach, 2 workstations. As you upgrade one Mobo you transfer the old to the secondary system. Then for a few bucks more you can create your third and start your extended render farm.


My 2 cents anyway. I really like the multi-tasking aspect with no load on the rendering. You might find a lot of advantages to having multiple apps open and visible-get cards with dual monitors and have 4 screens at your disposal?



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Thanks for the tips William. I will probably be going the sata route. Anybody had experience using raid configurations? I was thinking at first about setting up a raid level 0. But I don't think I will end up doing that, since it makes it even harder to have a backup system. Basically would mean having more hard drives that I want to spend money on, and deal with altogether.


I just hope that when I do get my new system, I can still get all my programs to work - especially Vray & Psd manager. These new licensing programs are fine, but make it tricky when switching machines, from what everyone else says.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The psd-manager license is not a problem if you have both PCs in a network. You can just install psd-manager on the new machine and tell it to get its license from your old machine (This way psd-manager will get your psd-manager license from the old machine when it needs it.). You don't even have to install the licensing software on the new machine in this case.


Network rendering of PSD files doesn't require a psd-manager license anyway.



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