Acer Altos G330 Mk2 Server - Ebuyer User Reviews

This page is the text of the Ebuyer User Product Reviews page for the Acer Altos G330 Mk2 Server. This link was broken as of 23/9/08, but as the page was useful, I have posted the text here for your information.

"Reverse PCI Sockets?"
review by: Anonymous os: Not Applicable

I recently bought an HP server from Insight and I too was surprised by these "reversed PCI sockets". However I soon found out that these are the latest version PCI2.2 - 3.3 volt sockets and because of the obvious voltage difference the designers have altered the position of the slot on the newer cards and the matching "gate" now at the other end of the PCI slot.

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19/07/2008 Comment:
What you get, what you don't
review by: Rob Hackney os: Linux

In the box you get the server itself, with:

1x 1Gb DDR2 800MHz memory,

1x SATA DVD-ROM drive,

1x two-button wheel mouse (ball!?),

3x spare SATA leads,

1x two pin (EU!?) power lead,

1x system builder DVD,

1x 3M anti-static bracelet.

The back panel includes VGA-out, ethernet, 2xUSB, and PS/2 keyboard and mouse sockets.

You do NOT get:

- Hard drives,

- Writer/rewriter,

- Sound card,

- Graphics card,

- Wireless,

- Keyboard.

Smart buying on ebuyer will mean you can add the above parts at very low cost. This is worth it, because the processor from this server when bought separately is practically the same price.

Additional info:

- Supports dual-channel memory, so buy paired sticks.

- Does NOT have IDE channels, only SATA, so plan for this if adding a DVD rewriter.

I will be dual-booting XP64 and Fedora, so I will add notes on installation problems/successes and performance later.

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22/07/2008 Comment:
Good value, but...
review by: Anonymous os: Other

Although this lists plenty of 3.5" bays for hard disks, you need the 'acer easy-swap' carriers to mount them, which are not included and I've not yet found anywhere in the UK that stocks them without buying disks too.

I've used 5.25" to 3.5" rails to mount a pair of disks in the cdrom bays which works fine for up to 2 disks. The floppy drive bay is not deep enough to mount a hard disk.

Otherwise this is a very quick machine for a great price - plenty of SATA connectors (and 6 cables are included) and a decent SATA II controller which works flawlessly with OpenSolaris - especially in AHCI mode with legacy support turned off.

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22/07/2008 Comment:

drive caddy
review by: Anonymous os: Windows XP

Installed Xp Pro sp3 on this machine with drivers supplied with all ok and extra memory.

To fit hard drives you will have to order from Acer the drive caddies TC-R160 G012 as this server has not got any fitted.


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28/07/2008 Review:
Graphics Card
review by: Anonymous rating:
customer ratingos: Other

The PCI-E x16 slot does accept graphics card but it will work on x1 mode but not x8 mode. It reduce the performance by 50%. I tested 2 nvidia card and but run on x1 mode. unless gaming is not the important role otherwise, easy mahcine, very fast. good value. 4 stars becasue of the graphics card is not x8 mode

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12/08/2008 Comment:
HDD Caddies
review by: Rob Hackney os: Linux

Have found two sites only in the UK which stock the hard drive caddies (TC.R160G.012), both of which are trade only. Have emailed one with a general enquiry and will post here when I hear back. I expect the caddies will cost about 15-20 GBP each.

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13/08/2008 Review:

Amazing value
review by: Anonymous rating:
customer ratingos: Windows XP

Thanks to Rob Hackney for his very useful review. I will add a few more points - NB this is real nit-picking because it's such amazing value anyway.

1. PCI-Express graphics issue: You won't get more than 1x. It's not a "bug" it is in the design. I've found the onboard 2d graphics fine so far for my non-games usage.

Altos G330 Mk2 FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

"Q1. What's the difference between Altos G330 Mk2 and Altos G330?"

It shows a "No" for "PCI Express graphics support" for both models.


"11. Can Altos G330 Mk2 support PCI-Express x16 or x8 graphics?

ANSWER: Altos G330 Mk2 features Intel 3200 chipset and does NOT support PCI-Express graphics. Please

refer to Intel 3200 chipset MCH datasheet for more detail."

Sure enough in the Intel PDF,

"1.2.4 PCI Express* Interface

... The 3200/3210 MCHs do not support PCI Express graphics. The PCI Express ports are intended for external device attach."

2. PCI slots - they are indeed PCI 3 slots, will only house 3.3V cards and "universal" cards (with two slots). For a sound card I've bought a Creative Sound Blaster Audigy SE 7.1 which fits and works.

3. Very limited motherboard support as it's not sold in this country. Even if you could read Chinese, the Gigabyte website in Taiwan< (not "Chinese Taipei" :-( ) doesn't have any info or updates.

4. No drivers for AHCI for Windows XP are supplied, or available from anywhere at all. Only onboard RAID drivers (have to make a floppy disk, press F6 during install). Other motherboards which use the same ICH9R chipset have lots of support for Win XP AHCI, but not this one. So if you want XP, you'll get no Native Command Queuing (NCQ) mode on your nice fast SATA drive unless you use RAID.

5. The BIOS is soldered to motherboard so you risk a dead PC if flashing it goes wrong. But mine had the latest BIOS installed anyway.

6. If installing XP then the DVD that comes with it contains the latest version of every driver except the Broadcom ethernet driver which is here:

7. Lovely and fast, POVray benchmark time I got was 4 mins 38 seconds using the latest beta. XP again.

8. No options in the BIOS for any kind of overclocking, changing ram timings or voltages. It doesn't even tell you if you're in Dual Channel mode; nor does CPU-Z's memory tab work (probably due to limited motherboard support). It is a server though so to be expected. SiSoft Sandra pulls the info off though.

9. Cages for hard drives - I'll quote


>Yep the cage cost's UKP7.80 each, + UKP6 shipping.

>Part Number - TCR160G012

>Available from acer - 08708531007

10. The 1GB ram mine came with is manufacturerd by Nanya and is part NT1GT72U8PB0BY-25D.

NT1GT72U8PB0BY-25D 1GB Nanya PC2-6400

800MHz DDR2-800 240 pin CL 4 1.8V ECC UNBUFFERED 128Mx72 2 Rank DDR2 SDRAM DIMM Memory

11. It had an "Intel Pentium" warning sticker on the front, instead of a Xeon one, and I first thought they'd sent the wrong machine! ;-)

12. Other links:



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18/07/2008 Review:
Server 2008
review by: Anonymous rating:
customer ratingos: Other

I bought this as opposed to an HP ML110. Its quite a decent piece of kit for the money and quite well put together. Good side = It comes with 3 spare sata leads, a disposable anti static band!! and a mouse. The setup disc doesnt support Window Server 2008 but the Vista drivers seem to work ok. It is quiet in operation and has 6 SATA ports and one floppy port. The motherboard has a SATA raid chip thats supports 0,1 and 5 raid. The board is a Gigabyte GA-5DXSL-RH. On the downside the case at the front has an easy access door for hard drives. However you need a special housing not included for the drives. So there is no where for any hard drives as without the holder your stuffed!! I put two SATA drives in some empty 3.5 spaces after a little metalwork , not ideal really..... how ever its running well and I guess thats the main thing, 3 stars as its cheap and fast, if i had paid full wack I would think maybe 2 stars

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23/07/2008 Review:

Good value..but beware!
review by: Anonymous rating:
customer ratingos: Not Applicable

Impressed with the build quality and nice to see a Gigabyte motherboard as mentioned in one of the earlier reviews.

The major downside is the fact that the PCI-E x16 slot will not support a graphics card and the onboard XGI graphics chip is really only suitable for a desktop display.

Mounting hard drives is not too dificult, bend the two stops on the lower 3.5" bays and drives can be fitted "backwards".

The only other strange thing I have found is the two PCI sockets seem to be reversed, ie. the socket divider facing the rear of the machine.

All of the PCI cards I have here have the divider slot towards the center of the motherboard when fitted, in fact the picture of the motherboard on the Gigabyte website shows the PCI connectors the "correct" way round!

Can any other purchaser comment on this?

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