Weazer - the server

Weazer initially started life as a Poweredge 2300 server. dual PII 500 and 1 gig ram. Its got its nickname as it kept dieing and being re-born for new uses. Wheezing along like an old man. It initially was retired when the last of its disks died and replacement were uneconomical to replace. What caught my eye was the fact that the 6 drive caddies in the front where aluminium and had a nice cooling process that drew air past the system. My server at home was continually suffering from over heating problems and saw the case as an ideal case replacement. The main issues that I faced was that the dell box is very proprietary in all areas. Custom MB, unique power supply, floppy and cradles. the saving grace was the drive caddies would handle std 3.5" ide drives. The first step was to remove all existing hardware leaving just the case, Out comes the motherboard, scsi backplane, power supply, floppy. I then attacked the back of the case with a dremmel tool in order to enable me to insert a normal ATX MB tray. The total modification took around a day at the expense of numerous cutting discs and head scratching.

The server specs:

MSI A8N motherboard (2 x PATA & 4 x SATA connectors)

AMD Winchester 3200+

1 gig ram

3 x 200 gig PATA drives

3 x 120 gig PATA drives

1 x 200 gig SATA drive

2 x 120 gig SATA drives

Ricoh DVD-cdrom dvd writer

Sony SDX 420

Coolmaster fan controller.

Silicon Image 0680 PCI ide controller (2 x PATA Connectors)

ATI PCI video card.

The server is running Redhat Fedora Core 4. I was running Enterprise Linux 4 but it had problems with some of the PATA drives. I am running software raid over two of the sata drives. This is the system drive and critical data.

The front of the case received little modification apart from the re-soldering of the power/reset board to the left. This was simply to enable normal atx buttons and LEDs. I have also added a Ricoh DVD drive, Sony 420SDX tape drive and Coolmaster fan controller. Added as the default fans sounds like a pack of Banshees in an orgy.


The inside of the case had a dual drive caddy added (for the sata raid array) and all panels had sound deadening foam added to all flat panels. This is because with the number of drives and fans that some of the panels tended to resonate. With the ATX tray added on the left side instead of the right the ATX power cables were to short to reach. I cut up an old motherboard and manufactured some extension cables to enable them to reach. The std Dell fans where replaced with low DB fans. There is one to the left hand side below the HDD caddies which draws air past the hdd's. The second is in the rear. All fans are directed to draw air from the left to the right.


The rear of the case is where most of the work took place. The ATX tray fitment was very tight. As you can see numerous little cuts and nicks where made to make it fit just right. The outcome was excellent with the tray fitting very tight and snug.