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Re: [K12OSN] Anyone quantified savings using LTSP?



Terrell Prude' Jr. wrote:
Rob Owens wrote:
Terrell Prudé Jr. wrote:
James P. Kinney III wrote:
Of course, it's not that hard to come up with donated PCs, so that's a
bigger savings.

Old PC's are the way to get the thin client process _started_. The are
large, hot, heavy and often come with the old CRT monitor. All power
hogs.

I have to disagree somewhat here. Old PC's actually don't use much juice at all if you just pull the hard disks (the power cable to the HD is sufficient) and use LCD screens with them. CRT's are going to suck power whether you hook them up to a new Northtec-style thin client or an old PC. We once got a bunch of donated 15" LCD screens at one school, and they got put into a lab full of Dell OptiPlex GX1's. Once I flashed the BIOSes to the latest revision (took 5 minutes per box), things went smoothly as wet ice...and saved a nice wad of cash, too.

I recently did some power measurements of various types of computer equipment. I'm attaching an ods spreadsheet, but I'm not sure if the list will block it or not. I found that old P2 or P3 machines used about 30 Watts or so (idle) when used as a thin client.

-Rob

Looks like it came through OK.
Good, thorough analysis, Rob. Your measurements are similar to mine for old PC's. I got 29W usage with a Dell OptiPlex GX1, with (IIRC) a Pentium II-266MHz, HD disconnected. That is compared to my Athlon 2GHz

My P2 had about 4 PCI cards installed, so that might make the difference.

 which will suck up as much as 150W if I run it full-tilt (I had the HD
doing a lot of work, too). I hadn't tried a thin client, since I don't own one, but the power usage figures that you're showing for those are impressive.

I guess it comes down to a cost-benefit analysis of power saved over the expected remaining life of the old PC's whether you go w/ new thin clients or old PC's.

Don't forget that it can also come down to appearance! I've found that people are typically more impressed with a tiny thin client than an old P2 acting as a thin client. I guess for some people judging something visually comes more naturally than judging by performance...

For one of my installations it came down to space constraints. I needed thins client that would mount on the back of an LCD monitor because there was nowhere else to put them.

-Rob
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