ex nihilo nilhil fit


2020-05-03

Building a better rig

With new focus and a computer calamity comes the need for a new rig and a new lab. I'll spare the details of all of that but I'll dig into my use case and my current build.

It's been years since I've built any new kit. I typically prefer to refurb older second hand machines but the inconvenience hit and I've managed to save enough money to build something proper.

Not only has my desktop imploded but most of my existing lab is far too old or underpowered to be useful. My stagnant lab and broken desktop reflect my current education initiatives. Along with a new learning plan, I've decided on a single machine to start and then I hope to expand my lab from there.

My requirements:

My use case here is that I typically intend to use it as my daily personal + side hustle machine, and to use it for network analysis/vulnerability research. Given that it'll be both my desktop and my lab (for now), it should be able to run a minimum of 3 VMs at once, preferably more. The only entertainment it should really support is the ability to play video/audio (streaming, local, and obsolete optical media formats) and read text clearly. I care little for video games so the graphic's card isn't a huge concern.

So on to the hardware list:

I'm still on the fence about liquid cooling. I'm pretty ignorant of the technology but I do think perhaps this machine might run hot. I have a lizard-hindbrain fear of blowing a line and ruining all the hardware.

Future looking, I would like to max out the RAM (128GB on this board), maybe upgrade to a 24 core threadripper, and possibly start playing with GPUs as processing units for breaking passwords and other data tasks. I've also considered a full size case but I'll be starting smaller for now.


ascia technologies
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