Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 27th Sep 2012 19:36 UTC
Apple I bought a brand new iMac on Tuesday. I'm pretty sure this will come as a surprise to some, so I figured I might as well offer some background information about this choice - maybe it'll help other people who are also pondering what to buy as their next computer.
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Or just buy 2 PCs and have backups
by rklrkl on Thu 27th Sep 2012 22:16 UTC
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What I did before my massive "record 24 HD channels of Olympics for 2 weeks" setup was actually buy more than one PC. OK, I actually bought 4 in all (2 for grunt work, 2 Acer Revos for media centre clients), but the idea's still sound.

The high spec PCs were ordered from two different PC builders (I avoided loading up with RAM/SSDs/HDDs and bought most of that separately) and I then bought two different makes of 240GB SSD and something like 8 * 3TB HDD's spread across the two machines. Yes, I did have a spare one or two 3TB drives (and a spare SSD from an old machine) and didn't bother with RAID because of that.

I used one of the spare 3TB in a USB 3 external enclosure for backups and also added in stuff like two decent UPS'es, a couple of different model 24" monitors and two different plasma TVs. At the end of the day, if anything breaks down, I can resume in a matter of minutes/hours, not days. The full lowdown is on my Olympecs blog at

As far as OS'es goes, it was Ubuntu 12.04+XBMC 11.0 (Pulse Eight version with Live TV) for the Acer Revos and Ubuntu 12.04+tvheeadend(git) for the 2 custom PCs (after the Olympics, I changed that to CentOS 6+Windows 7 on my main custom PC and left Ubuntu on the other one for normal TV recording post-Olympics).

Post-Olympics, I further upgraded the RAM, so am now on 32GB on one PC and 16GB on the other. 32GB is great for running VMs - you can give 8GB per VM! Oh, the custom PCs had Sandy Bridge i7 2600's and, yep, an Asus motherboard.

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