Home Server setup

Anything and everything to do with DCP-o-matic.
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davidr
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2024 5:15 pm

Home Server setup

Post by davidr »

Hello! I've got a question around setting up a home server with DCP conversion capabilities.
I'm part of an org that produces a film festival every year and we're always dealing with trying to short films that need to be converted to DCP for playback, depending on who we're working with that year.

I'm looking to make some updates in my home lab (for engineering work, not necessarily film-related stuff) and I'm thinking of upgrading from an old home PC to a refurbished server to function as my lab server. I figured since I'm doing that anyway, I should make it something that can also double up to be used for converting DCPs with DCP-o-matic.

I was thinking of getting a refurb'd Dell PowerEdge R630 Server 2X E5-2640v3 2.60Ghz 16-Core 64GB H330 since it's inexpensive enough to be in budget. My questions are:

1. Would this running an Ubuntu server function ok as an encoding server for DCP-o-matic? I've read in other posts that processor count is the main factor in the conversion speed.
2. Is there anything I should read into in terms of set up for running an encoding server? Most of the posts I've seen have used home PCs re-purposed as servers, as opposed to a commercial server.

That's all I can think of in terms of my questions. Thanks for reading!
Carsten
Posts: 2711
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2014 9:11 pm
Location: Germany

Re: Home Server setup

Post by Carsten »

It's certainly a useful machine for DCP creation. How much will it cost you?

I have no idea how complicated it is to setup a standard Ubuntu install on it. I guess this kind of server nowadays is mostly used with some hypervisor and virtualisation software. But, as these servers are so common, I guess there's plenty of help to be found on the usual support forums for this prominent server type.

- Carsten
Last edited by Carsten on Fri Jun 21, 2024 11:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Kewl
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Re: Home Server setup

Post by Kewl »

davidr wrote: Tue Jun 18, 2024 5:28 pmDell PowerEdge R630 Server 2X E5-2640v3 2.60Ghz 16-Core 64GB H330
If you install a compatible GPU and the right version of Ubuntu, this server would make a formidable DCP maker! viewtopic.php?t=2278
Carsten
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Location: Germany

Re: Home Server setup

Post by Carsten »

BTW - do we have any GPU benchmarks yet?
Kewl
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Re: Home Server setup

Post by Kewl »

I briefly tested back in November. The "painful" part was getting the DCP maker to talk to the Grok authorizing server (the server that verifies that you're authorized to use the software): that handshaking would not go through our firewall. So I used our network for the actual DCP making, but my cell phone network for authorization handshaking. Cumbersome to setup.

But the numbers were impressive. I posted a few results in the post that was in the Announcements forum section back in November, but that post seems to be gone. Maybe Carl could fish it out, so we could check those numbers again.
carl
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Re: Home Server setup

Post by carl »

Maybe this thread? viewtopic.php?p=11879#p11879

Things shouldn't get deleted, they just drop down into the date-ordered list when their special "announcement" status is removed.
Carsten
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Re: Home Server setup

Post by Carsten »

These were not GPU benchmarks it seems. The Sintel 99fps number is still impressive. It also shows that a plain vanilla machine can pipe through 99fps over a 2GBit Ethernet line.I wasn't sure wether a single master would actually be able to support the necessary throughput for a very fast GPU encoder. The master has to do quite a bit of stuff before it can send an image to an encoder.
Kewl
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Re: Home Server setup

Post by Kewl »

Sorry Carl, I sent you on wild goose chase: I confused the post you found with my emails with Aaron about Grok.

The testing apparatus was suboptimal (big computer with a NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070, but with a slow laptop HD), but I was able to get 65 fps on Sintel on a that single computer using Grok. When I added our encoding servers, I got 120 fps.

With our normal encoding farm setup (Host: Mac Studio Ultra 20-core, 2Gbit ethernet, Nodes 1 - 7: Mac Pro 2013 12-core 2.7GHz, 2Gbit ethernet), the limiting factor is the network: the host output becomes saturated around 500 megabytes/second and performance decreases. It's not a problem for 2K DCPs, but it is for 4K DCPs.

In any case, the new JPEG2000 library increases performance by 20, 25% on CPU-only encoding.
Last edited by Kewl on Fri Jun 21, 2024 11:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
davidr
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2024 5:15 pm

Re: Home Server setup

Post by davidr »

Carsten wrote: Wed Jun 19, 2024 10:59 am It's certainly a useful machine for DCP creation. How much will it cost you?

I have no idea how complicated it is to setup a standard Ubuntu install on it. I guess this kind of server nowadays is mostly used with so hypervisor and virtualisation software. But, as these servers are so common, I guess there's plenty of help to be found on the usual support forums for this prominent server type.

- Carsten
It costs just under $200 from Amazon for a refurb'd one. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B081S6662H
Pretty damn inexpensive, I think. The space for it the probably the bigger concern at the moment since I'm in an apartment.
I'll spend some time this weekend getting acquainted with it before doing anything else.
davidr
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2024 5:15 pm

Re: Home Server setup

Post by davidr »

Kewl wrote: Wed Jun 19, 2024 12:19 pm
davidr wrote: Tue Jun 18, 2024 5:28 pmDell PowerEdge R630 Server 2X E5-2640v3 2.60Ghz 16-Core 64GB H330
If you install a compatible GPU and the right version of Ubuntu, this server would make a formidable DCP maker! viewtopic.php?t=2278
This could be a fun side project when I have some down time. It's hella late now but I'd be down to be a tester for it or any future stuff as well with this machine. Thanks for the reference!
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