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Technical Details Behind the LAN-Party Optimized House

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the do-you-take-requests dept.

Network 123

New submitter Temporal writes "Yesterday, Slashdot reported on my LAN-party optimized house. But, lacking from the internet at that time were key technical details: How do I boot 12 machines off a single shared disk? What software do I use? What does my network infrastructure look like? Why do I have such terrible furniture? Is that Gabe Newell on the couch? The answer is a combination of Linux, PXE boot, gPXE, NBD/iSCSI, and LVM snapshots running on generic hardware over generic gigabit ethernet. I have even had several successful LAN parties with a pure-Linux setup, using WINE."

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123 comments

It stands to reason that... (5, Funny)

Fallingcow (213461) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404540)

...plenty of wine would make a Linux-centric LAN party tolerable, and perhaps even enjoyable.

Re:It stands to reason that... (1)

war4peace (1628283) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404550)

...but... isn't beer enough already?

Re:It stands to reason that... (1)

francium goes boom (1969836) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404590)

I prefer to keep my LAN parties at a classy level that beer cannot provide.

Re:It stands to reason that... (2)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404622)

You're drinking the wrong beer. You probably aren't even using the right kind of glass..or any glass.

Re:It stands to reason that... (1)

jd (1658) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404738)

In that case, Lindesfarne Mead would surely be the tipple of choice.

Re:It stands to reason that... (0)

macraig (621737) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404850)

Not if Wolowitz crashes the party... ain't enough WINE nor WoW that can counter that. Damn, but Penny needs to stop spilling to Bernadette....

Dude, that's lame (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38404552)

Wasn't one bragging story enough? Did you really have to submit another story about yourself?

Re:Dude, that's lame (4, Informative)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404612)

Honestly I'm kicking myself for not having written everything up before going public. The vast majority of people who saw the original post will not see the technical details. :/

Re:Dude, that's lame (5, Funny)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404636)

It's like you went public beta before working out the kinks~

Re:Dude, that's lame (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38404666)

That's google for ya.

Re:Dude, that's lame (5, Funny)

jd (1658) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404754)

Release early, release often. I thought that was the way we're supposed to work.

Re:Dude, that's lame (1)

SomePgmr (2021234) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404812)

It was a good write-up... I was curious about a lot of that when I saw it the other day.

I'm blown away by how much you put into the project. The cabinet rigs in particular came out really slick. Congrats, and go get your employer to use it as a demo for SketchUp. ;)

Re:Dude, that's lame (1)

h00manist (800926) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405274)

get your employer to use it as a demo for SketchUp. ;)

Or perhaps to follow Microsoft's lead and create some games, as it leads into experimenting with lots of technologies. Perhaps Linux gaming will get a boost too.

Re:Dude, that's lame (3, Insightful)

TrekkieGod (627867) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404876)

Honestly I'm kicking myself for not having written everything up before going public. The vast majority of people who saw the original post will not see the technical details. :/

A lot of people wouldn't care about the technical details either. You can be a gamer without being a geek.

Kickass house, dude. Pay the AC no attention, envy is not a pretty thing. Thanks for the technical article, there's definitely stuff in there everyone can use, even if they don't have a house purely optimized for LAN parties. In fact, I wouldn't mind seeing additional details, tutorials on setting up the images and the like.

Re:Dude, that's lame (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38404996)

Envy? I've hosted bigger networks and invited more people. How about being annoyed about him self-submitting a story about a topic that already got posted yesterday? Self-submitting is really bad form on its own, but in this case the story is basically a dupe too. And don't tell me you couldn't have found info about setting up a home LAN and PXE booting with iSCSI if this guy hadn't graciously let us in on his secrets. I did those things with the Win7 RC and there were write-ups back then. You can kiss his ass all day long, he's still not going to invite you over.

Re:Dude, that's lame (5, Interesting)

hpa (7948) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405496)

As the author of Syslinux/PXELINUX I found the article rather interesting and enjoyable. :)

Re: Syslinux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405826)

You know, I always wondered why the extlinux component of syslinux hasn't taken hold as a boot option in most of the major Linux distros yet? It has the file system support similar to grub, yet the simplicity of lilo. Perfect combination for when grub seems like overkill (I often run into cases where I can't easily get grub to do what I think it is supposed to do, and extlinux has ended up saving my hide).

Re: Syslinux (1)

hpa (7948) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405898)

Well, let the distros know...

Re: Syslinux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406692)

If you're the kind of user that cares about boot options, you should probably be using Arch Linux [archlinux.org]

Re:Dude, that's lame (1)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406000)

As the author of Syslinux/PXELINUX I found the article rather interesting and enjoyable. :)

Thank you for your useful software! Sadly I'm no longer using pxelinux since I switched to Windows, but I believe I'm still using your TFTP server. :)

Re:Dude, that's lame (1)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406670)

I love you.

Re:Dude, that's lame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406716)

I also love you

Re:Dude, that's lame (1)

jones_supa (887896) | more than 2 years ago | (#38407368)

I love you too.

Re:Dude, that's lame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406390)

thank you, you gave me some leads for something I'm working on at work.

Re:Dude, that's lame (1)

Chronus1326 (1769658) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404644)

I love how this guy signed in as Anonymous Coward. I don't have a house this cool and wish i did! I long for cat5e Ethernet in the walls, let alone a complete LAN party setup. Kudos Temporal.

Re:Dude, that's lame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38404746)

You should be my #1 fan then. I always "sign in as Anonymous Coward".

Re:Dude, that's lame (3, Informative)

wierd_w (1375923) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404884)

You do realize that it is extraordinarily easy to install cat5e wall plates and drops in most modern homes, right?

You can use powertools, have an rj45 modular crimping tool, and know where to buy bulk cat5e right? (If not, can I please verify your geek card...)

All you need is hidden utility closet to house the punchblock and local switch hardware, and you are golden. With how small some of this hardware has gotten, you might even be able to get away with a breakerbox enclosure from lowes, assuming you put some ventilation in it.

My current home was once refit as a beauty salon by the previous owners, and has so may utility hookups in the living room that I could have a christmas tree made entirely of christmas lights and not blow any fuses (hookups for dryer chairs have beefy amp ratings). If I wasn't such an antisocial recluse, and actually had lan party friends to come over I could really do crazy shit with my place too.

But I don't, so I haven't and won't. But if you want to run cat5e in your house, the only thing stopping you is inertia, since as far as I know you don't need an electrician to run the stuff, being so low voltage.

Re:Dude, that's lame (2)

Jaktar (975138) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405250)

The only thing stopping me from running cat5e in my home is not inertia, it's the large structure made of wood that runs up, down, and horizontally through the walls. Unless I wanted to cut holes in the walls so I could drill pass through holes between floors, there's no way to do it completely in the walls. Of course, you could put up molding in the corners and along the ceiling to hide everything. Some might even go under the carpet (which I did in one room).

Re:Dude, that's lame (1)

BKX (5066) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405660)

Generally that problem can be solved with 36 inch flexible drill bits (they exist and are awesome and not too expensive), maybe some flexible drill bit extenders (you may need the equivalent of a 100 inch drill bit), and some fishtape. Usually, you just drill down until you hit the unfinished part of your basement, or you drill over until you hit an air duct and run plenum rated through that with the fishtape.

Desk height (1)

wonkavader (605434) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404558)

No, the burning question was what kind of chuckle-head would spend all that money and stick his friends on fixed height desks all (it looks from the pictures) at writing height, not typing height.

He's going to give all his friends who are not very tall shoulder and wrist problems.

Look at the pictures. They're all (except for one very tall guy) very badly positioned for work.

He's going to need a to dole out ibuprofen by the pound to his guests.

Re:Desk height (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404592)

Adjustable chairs are pretty easy to come by.

Re:Desk height (4, Interesting)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404594)

It's a fair criticism. I wanted to make the desks lower but I also wanted the monitors to sit higher when folded up, and the desks were getting stupidly deep, so I had to compromise. In practice, though, people aren't typing at these desks, they're gaming, which in my experience (as someone with some RSI problems) is not as sensitive to desk height.

Re:Desk height (1)

atamido (1020905) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406462)

I can think of a couple of ways around it, but each with their own disadvantages, and what you did seems simplest and clean. That said, I'd definitely prefer height adjustable rolling chairs (floor scratches and storage space be damned).

Incidentally, where does the sound come from on the stations? And how loud is it in that room, as I don't see many sound absorbing surfaces.

Re:Desk height (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38407310)

Incidentally, where does the sound come from on the stations? And how loud is it in that room, as I don't see many sound absorbing surfaces.

I'm guessing headphones.

Re:Desk height (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38404602)

He's going to give all his friends who are not very tall shoulder and wrist problems.

Nah. I've struggled with carpal tunnel and tendonitis. It's something brought on from repetitive strain, day after day after day. This setup doesn't look ergonomically ideal, but for one LAN party a month, you can get away with a lot.

d00d, this is nothing special (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38404564)

the stodgy guys at bell labs were doing this in 1990
with plan 9.

or should i update my lingo and say "1990 called and
wants its idea back?".

- erik

Re:d00d, this is nothing special (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405684)

You're an idiot.

Thank-You (1)

bmsleight (710084) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404570)

Great follow up to the previous article.

Kudos to you.

Crashman?! (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38404582)

Why would you ever name a device Crashman? This just seems ominous!

"Which machine do you want to use for the LAN party?"
"Oh, Crashman looks really stable."

Your house is great! (1)

Chronus1326 (1769658) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404618)

Does anyone know if this setup would work with Windows 7 images? Not the installer, PXE boot the whole OS. I've often wondered.

Re:Your house is great! (3, Interesting)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404684)

Yes, that's exactly what I'm doing -- PXE-booting the whole OS over iSCSI. I'll edit to make that clearer.

Re:Your house is great! (1)

Chronus1326 (1769658) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405534)

From the article: Once Windows was installed to the iSCSI target, gPXE could then boot directly into it, without any need for a local disk at all. Yes, this means you can PXE-boot Windows 7 itself, not just the installer. Now I fully intend on doing this, just not to your extent. I read up on gPXE and where it can be installed to, the web site says: "We, the Etherboot Project, create network booting code that allows computers to load their operating system from a network. Our code can be stored in a number of places, including BIOS Flash, EPROMs, floppy, CD, HD, or other bootable media." Which option did you choose? I assume BIOS FLASH or CD, I guess I could find a use for those 64Megabyte flash drives I've got....

Re:Your house is great! (1)

atamido (1020905) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406786)

Yes, that's exactly what I'm doing -- PXE-booting the whole OS over iSCSI. I'll edit to make that clearer.

I've looked at some of the pricey solutions that do various versions of this, and what you've done for free is very impressive. I do want to confirm that I'm reading it right though, and that you're basically booting the same image, so the machine names and such will all be identical within Windows, is that correct? Have you seen that cause any issues for any games? Have you tried any LAN games like this (preferably more recent than Quake)?

Clearly having the same machine name and SSID makes it unusable for an Active Directory environment, but it doesn't sound like you're all that far off from the commercial products meant for enterprise environments.

Re:Your house is great! (1)

Junta (36770) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405240)

All you can 'PXE' boot is WinPE, but most anyone wouldn't care about the distinction between that and PXE-bootstrapped iSCSI. PXE boot iPXE, then iPXE interprets root-path to start Windows with their native software iSCSI support. ipxe.org is a place you can do it yourself. xCAT automates everything from stgt iSCSI creation, to unattended windows install from DVD into iSCSI root, but may be a bit much for a home setup when you can just learn how to do it yourself manually at not much more effort.

How well does that perform? (1)

man_ls (248470) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404634)

I can't imagine a single machine serving out over iSCSI to have performance acceptable to play any modern, intensive game. How's it all work?

Re:How well does that perform? (4, Informative)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404708)

I can't imagine a single machine serving out over iSCSI to have performance acceptable to play any modern, intensive game. How's it all work?

I couldn't imagine it either, but it turns out it works fine. Obviously the load times aren't blazingly fast but no one has ever complained about them being slow either.

Note that most games load all data upfront. Once they've done that, the game runs without doing much I/O.

Also note that an iSCSI image can be fully cached client-side, so if you load the same game twice, it's probably going to load directly from RAM the second time. (Most games are 32-bit so there's a good 4GB of RAM in the machines doing not much other than disk cache.)

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

man_ls (248470) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404766)

Very cool. Thanks for posting that write-up.

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

jd (1658) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404780)

PXE, et al, use TFTP, if I remember rightly. In principle, there's nothing to stop the files being delivered by multicast FTP (yes there are at least three, they use Scalable Reliable Multicast, FLUTE or NACK-Oriented Reliable Multicast respectively). Since OS images and the games themselves don't differ between machines, if you have N machines you get file delivery about N times as fast. (About because lost packets are resent, so it's not truly linear improvement.)

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404816)

PXE, et al, use TFTP, if I remember rightly. In principle, there's nothing to stop the files being delivered by multicast FTP (yes there are at least three, they use Scalable Reliable Multicast, FLUTE or NACK-Oriented Reliable Multicast respectively). Since OS images and the games themselves don't differ between machines, if you have N machines you get file delivery about N times as fast. (About because lost packets are resent, so it's not truly linear improvement.)

Indeed, as mentioned in the blog, I was at one point trying to develop a UDP-based blog device protocol that would broadcast blocks back, on the assumption that all the machines would be loading the same data at the same time. However, when I got the system up and running without that, and didn't see any performance problems, I decided to abandon that idea and focus efforts elsewhere.

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

jd (1658) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404882)

That makes sense. The bottleneck defines the upper limit of performance. If you do go back to working with UDP, I do suggest grabbing either the NRL's NORM (snapshot version since they don't produce official releases any more for some reason) or FLUTE, since those give you the libraries you want for no effort. Both are listed on Freshme....sorry, Freecode. (That new site name STILL sounds too much like Freescale, the Motorola chip spinoff.)

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

Junta (36770) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405170)

Well with gPXE (pretty much dead now as the meat of the project forked to iPXE), most setups use tftp to transfer ~64 kilobytes and then other protocols take over (like http for a tftp workalike loading into ram or iSCSI for block storage loading content on-demand). Now with games, level load times may vary, but generally everything is in memory (or at *least* cache) when it comes down to actual gameplay.

Stateless ram-based OSes delivered can work too, but the multicast generally isn't worth it. A system can serve up dozens of reasonable OS images on a lan in really short order, and once boot is done, network no longer matters. Unless you make some significant effort designing your ethernet network right, the multicast is pretty much just broadcast, which becomes problematic for any participants of the network *not* intended to be a party to a transfer in progress.

Re:How well does that perform? (3, Informative)

wierd_w (1375923) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405022)

If all the image needs to do is hold the basic OS and a single game deployment, why not pxe the whole image to a dedicated hardware ram drive, that can make full use of the sata controller?

Acard has a number of such devices, and while pricey, would absolutely floor disk io performance in a game rig. [acard.com.tw]

There are quite a few other devices of this type on the market as well.

Using these in the systems, you could still netload the system images to the game rigs with pxe, but when the image has finished being pushed, just reboot them and you have a bitchin fast row of locally booting systems. Power them off when they need a new configuration pushed.

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

adolf (21054) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405948)

If the machine serving as an iSCSI host has sufficient RAM, it already almost works that way:

1. Client A boots up. Loads OS from solid-state disk. Subsequent clients are likely to load directly from the server's RAM cache, which just got populated automatically.
2. Client A runs a game. Loads game from disk. Subsequent clients are likely to load directly from the server's RAM cache...

So the first load is at disk (SSD) speed, and the subsequent loads are at RAM speed (although both instances are limited to Gig-E speed).

The server uses a shared copy-on-write system for each client's image, making this a super-simple, zero-cost arrangement with almost all of the advantages of a well-managed RAM disk, none of the difficulties involved in managing it, and none of the associated problems.

Meanwhile, it's not at all clear what advantage a hardware RAM disk would ever have in the real world, since such things are so easily implemented in software and are always cheaper/better/faster that way...unless the system in question is already out of RAM capacity or has some software dependency that requires a RAM disk to talk SATA.

For instance, I had a 2-megabyte ISA expansion board on my 10MHz XT back in 1991. I used half of it for a RAM disk which I kept some oft-used programs on, and half of it for cache. But this only made sense because the price was right, the system was already at its maximum capacity of 640k, and the disks I had (ST-225 and ST-419) were murderously slow. It was a night-and-day difference in performance for the stuff I was doing with that box.

But for modern consumer applications (which include gaming), systems today commonly support relatively huge amounts of relatively cheap RAM. This obviously allows for fairly large RAM disks without drama if it makes sense for some reason (and it doesn't, here).

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

RobbieThe1st (1977364) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405990)

Or just stick 16gb+ ram in your machine, setup a soft-ramdisk...
Best would be if things were ECC compatible, but well-tested regular ram would probably do fine.

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

wierd_w (1375923) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406052)

Agreed, but most "massive amounts of ram" capable desktop boards are multiprocessor cuda designs.

This means a cpu hit and cpu bus io bottleneck for disk io.
This bottleneck will also be having to service exchanges between the videocards and system ram, and program execution requirements. (Most games are uniprocessor, even today.) The ram is present, but to get to it you have to talk to another processor/core.

The issue with disk io vs cpu involvement is important. It is the single most important feature of a bus mastering drive controller. You can watch an otherwise high end box grab its ass and moan like goatse by disabling bus mastering on the drive controller.

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

mcrbids (148650) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406346)

We found that SATA SSDs weren't just faster than 15k SCSI drives, but dramatically so in database servers. We saw at least 10x performance boost despite being "only" SATA drives.

I wonder if you've considered this route?

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38407210)

I think you might be confusing iSCSI (a network protocol) with SCSI (a disk hardware interface). My physical disks are all SATA, and are a mix of SSD and HDD. The bottleneck is network bandwidth, so using SSD everywhere isn't going to improve performance much.

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

Omnifarious (11933) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404748)

Games do not spend that much time doing disk IO after they've started. And most modern drives deliver nowhere near a gigabit of streaming performance anyway.

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405068)

And most modern drives deliver nowhere near a gigabit of streaming performance anyway.

Well, almost all SSDs do [anandtech.com] . (1Gb/s is about 125 MB/s).

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

Omnifarious (11933) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406018)

An SSD would not be my first choice when trying to improve the performance of a gaming machine. But yes, you're right, almost all SSDs do.

Re:How well does that perform? (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 2 years ago | (#38407142)

Why not?

Modern games aren't bottlenecked at the disk. Even if they were, the bottleneck then becomes the network, since it's been read from disk into RAM at this point. But try it -- next time you fire up a modern game, when it's attempting to load a level, watch the hard drive light. Usually it flickers from time to time. Then fire up Defrag or something, which you *know* will generate a lot of disk activity, and compare.

And that's just loading. Once it's loaded, it's in RAM. The disk is just a nice big place to dump savegames and screenshots.

I wouldn't be surprised to learn this is partly because of consoles. There just isn't that much guaranteed bandwidth from those optical disks -- certainly not more than there is over a Gigabit network.

Haha ... (4, Interesting)

vivek7006 (585218) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404640)

"I purchased 12 copies of Windows 7 Ultimate OEM System Builder edition, in 3-packs. However, it turns out that because the hardware is identical, Windows does not even realize that it is moving between machines."

Re:Haha ... (4, Informative)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404866)

"I purchased 12 copies of Windows 7 Ultimate OEM System Builder edition, in 3-packs. However, it turns out that because the hardware is identical, Windows does not even realize that it is moving between machines."

Yeah. I actually learned this after having purchased only one 3-pack, but went ahead and bought three more 3-packs just to be legal. With this much attention paid to my setup, I don't want to be caught pirating.

Re:Haha ... (5, Funny)

misexistentialist (1537887) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405348)

And afterwards you lit a cigar with a hundred-dollar bill.

Re:Haha ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405708)

Honestly thank you. I've never laughed so hard at a Slashdot comment in my life.

I once heard the term "Brevity is the soul of wit", and now I understand it.

Re:Haha ... (4, Insightful)

mattack2 (1165421) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405886)

In other words, you think doing the legal thing is wasting money.

Re:Haha ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38407468)

Doing the legal thing for convicted criminal company repeatedly abusing its monopoly is wasting money.

But MS may see 12 systems with the same key live (2)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404932)

But MS may see 12 systems with the same key live at the same time.

Re:Haha ... (1)

retchdog (1319261) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405120)

i think that a google employee can afford to have legitimate software licenses. :-/

also: "I highly recommend that anyone emulating my setup actually purchase the proper Windows licenses even if your machines are identical."

God dammit (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38404694)

Every computer using geek has an Asian girlfriend except me.

How they fuck do they do it?

You have to be white, nerdy, and socially awkward. I've got all three! Come hither, ladies!

Re:God dammit (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405184)

How they fuck do they do it?

Meet them, talk to them and convince them that you are a good person. Fixing their computer and paying for their internet access helps too.

Re:God dammit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406482)

How they fuck do they do it?

Meet them, talk to them and convince them that you are a good person. Fixing their computer and paying for their internet access helps too.

So you're saying I should ask the guy and he'll give the girlfriend to me? Then all he has to to is ask another guy the same thing? I'm not convinced, this sounds like a pyramid scheme.

Re:God dammit (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406768)

I think the gross misunderstanding above shows a bit of the difference :)
Actually the lure of the exotic cuts both ways. To Miss Whateverstate you may be just some loser nerd from a similar high school that grew up watching B grade TV comedy. To a girl that grew up on a farm in China near the Russian and North Korean borders you may be an interesting technocrat with an impressive command of English and full of witty comments she's never heard before.

Re:God dammit (1)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38407030)

To a girl that grew up on a farm in China near the Russian and North Korean borders you may be an interesting technocrat with an impressive command of English and full of witty comments she's never heard before.

I'm not sure if you meant to say that you think this describes my girlfriend. But if so, that's extremely racist. Christina was born and raised in Boston. And I'm dating her because she's a gamer geek, not because she's Asian.

Re:God dammit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38407186)

One of the reasons my wife (Japanese, born and raised in Japan) married me was because of my kindness and knowledge. I know a little bit about a lot of things, not just Star wars, Star Trek, and D&D. We've never lacked anything to talk about. I also took an interest in her hobbies and what she likes to talk about. I know a ton about quilting although I'll never pick up a needle and thread, and I know the right questions to ask. She is extremely intelligent and witty.

But of course your could keep believing that any asian woman is an unintelligent object from some podunk place and only likes "computer geeks" because they don't know any better. I bet you believe they can't pick up on that... or any woman for that matter.

Re:God dammit (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 2 years ago | (#38407504)

But of course your could keep believing that any asian woman is an unintelligent object from some podunk place

The girl from a farm I used as the example speaks and writes very well in four different languages. I was writing about differences in how people are seen from different viewpoints.

Re:God dammit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38407202)

So you've got a thing for Boston Pancakes then? That's so much better than an Asian fetish.

Re:God dammit (1)

PeanutSC (2533794) | more than 2 years ago | (#38407314)

I am not a pancake! I am at least French toast. French toast is prettier and, in my opinion, much tastier and more versatile. You can make French toast with many different kinds of bread, but you can't really do much to pancake batter except stick random fruits and toppings in it.

Think that this song is about you? (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 2 years ago | (#38407486)

I'm replying to the guy above and just using one example I've seen.
Also why assume it's racist? It could just as easily describe a Caucasian that has grown up in a different environment to the person she is attracted to.

Re:God dammit (1)

PeanutSC (2533794) | more than 2 years ago | (#38407184)

Actually the lure of the exotic cuts both ways. To Miss Whateverstate you may be just some loser nerd from a similar high school that grew up watching B grade TV comedy. To a girl that grew up on a farm in China near the Russian and North Korean borders you may be an interesting technocrat with an impressive command of English and full of witty comments she's never heard before.

For my part, I started dating Kenton not because he was exotic to me, but because he understood me better than almost all of the guys I've dated before. I was a linguistics major and I have an abnormally large vocabulary and tend to use pretty complicated syntax - Kenton never seemed to be put off by that, in contrast to many guys I've known. We also have a lot of common interests, video games being one of them (I work in game development). I personally think I'm wittier, but that may be because I tend to inflate my witticism count with "that's what she said" jokes.

Re:God dammit (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 2 years ago | (#38407554)

Sorry, I should have read the article before replying to an AC post in general terms with a specific example I've seen.
Now it appears you both think I'm writing about you - I'm sorry I gave that impression.

RemoteFX (1)

napoleon_jo (2533548) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404878)

It would be neat to see how a setup like this would hold out for gaming with Windows 8, Hyper-V and remotefx (assuming gaming cards play nice with it), then you could consolidate expenses to a machine or two, and keep your existing "client" hardware for years, if I understand how it will work...

BitcRh (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38404900)

useHrs. Surprise [goat.cx]

32Mbit = somewhere under 6 in the 3-6 mbps range (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | more than 2 years ago | (#38404914)

So he does not seem to get the full 6 mbps that http://www.sonic.net/ [sonic.net] offers on DSL. Must be to far from the CO or RT to get the full speed.

he bases Comcast but they have faster speeds and better upload. But the Sonic.net directv bundle is better for TV.

Re:32Mbit = somewhere under 6 in the 3-6 mbps rang (1)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405020)

I'm not quite sure what you mean. How is 32 less than 6?

A typical Comcast package appears to be 15mbps, according to their site. Comcast Business Class does offer pretty good bandwidth, though.

Re:32Mbit = somewhere under 6 in the 3-6 mbps rang (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405134)

sonic.net also has 20Mbps or up to 40Mbps broadband on Adsl+2 but 40 is dual line.

Re:32Mbit = somewhere under 6 in the 3-6 mbps rang (3, Interesting)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405342)

sonic.net also has 20Mbps or up to 40Mbps broadband on Adsl+2 but 40 is dual line.

Yes, that's what I have. The 40Mbps dual-line "Fusion". Due to distance from CO, it gets 32Mbps, but it is a consistent 32Mbps.

Re:32Mbit = somewhere under 6 in the 3-6 mbps rang (3, Informative)

Microlith (54737) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405208)

I think he's having a mental fault and mixing units.

32mbps = ~4MByte/s

which is better than the ~24mbps I get off Comcast (a solid 3MB/s off Steam content servers, at least until my cablemodem starts having seizures.)

Fake!!!! (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38404962)

This is a made up story by the liberal media.

Blizzard clearly stated that no one is interested in LAN parties and the whole concept is dead. Please move on. There is nothing here to see.

Re:Fake!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405688)

lol

No.. (2)

Frosty-B-Bad (259317) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405052)

The question isn't "How", its "Why".. money doesn't seem to be the big issue here, so why not spring for Server 2008R2 and manage all the boxes from there? it does all this updating/registering/etc your hacking together, and for around $800, versus your hourly rate x hours hacking, seems less expensive and the result is a heck of a lot more manageable. I'm all for the do-it-yourself type, but managing disk images? Yeah I can spend my time better elsewhere

Re:No.. (2)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405200)

The question isn't "How", its "Why".. money doesn't seem to be the big issue here, so why not spring for Server 2008R2 and manage all the boxes from there? it does all this updating/registering/etc your hacking together, and for around $800, versus your hourly rate x hours hacking, seems less expensive and the result is a heck of a lot more manageable. I'm all for the do-it-yourself type, but managing disk images? Yeah I can spend my time better elsewhere

No, it really does not do anything like what I'm doing... and anyway, setting this all up was lots of fun.

Disk images are trivial to manage... (2)

Junta (36770) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405214)

Why bother spending $800 bucks for an OS you may not particularly like the style of anyway? For a task like this, I really don't see a particular advantage that Windows would hold unless all you know is Windows. The tools to do this sort of stuff are trivial to work in Linux (I personally think easier than Microsoft tools, but that may be a preference).

I would give MS the benefit of the doubt on a setup suggesting AD account management, though I haven't tried 389 which may have a nice integrated feel. Standard OpenLDAP+Kerberos realm is a little more work than setting up AD for a relatively small setup, but I see that as superfluous either way for this sort of setup.

Re:No.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406816)

Let's say a new game just came out and you want to host a LAN party to play it. How do you deploy this game to all the machines using the Windows Server solution? Not trying to troll, just curious.

If ur not in a domain (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405522)

Clone away... SIDS only come into play if ur adding them to a domain otherwise have at it....

Remote Stations (2)

Bensam123 (1340765) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405614)

I'm curious as to what sort of latency he gets by extending USB through repeaters and if he uses hubs on his keyboard/mice at the other end? I know HDMI can be run quite a long distance (relatively speaking), but USB isn't made to be run long distances at all. If I remember correctly, there is a maximum distance USB can run before you need to add a hub/repeater. Adding to that, hubs in my experience interfere with peripherals, especially gaming peripherals (fast and high dpi mice). He doesn't really go into much detail besides saying he runs USB and HDMI to his remote stations.

Re:Remote Stations (2)

Temporal (96070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405780)

Monoprice sells 32' USB extensions that have a repeater on the end. I'm not sure how they get away with just one repeater instead of two as seems mandated by the USB spec, but they do and it works.

Re:Remote Stations (2)

Bensam123 (1340765) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406430)

Does this result in noticeable input latency that you can feel through gaming, similar to the sort of input drifting feeling you get with wireless peripherals?

Also, do you use hubs on the end for the keyboard/mouse or do you run a separate cable for each one? If you use hubs, have you run into issues with using them? Do you have gaming quality peripherals on the end as well (high dpi and polling mice and high poll rate keyboards)?

I ask as gaming peripherals tend to put more strain on USB connections then normal peripherals and can crap them out when they're operating on the edge (like the 32' repeater you mentioned). They draw more power and operate close to limitations of the spec in terms of latency.

Nice, but... (1)

Khyber (864651) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406132)

If you need more than a damned good switch, internet connection, and wireless AP to optimize your LAN parties (real LANners have their own boxen, TYVM) you're doing it wrong.

1990 called (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406986)

...they want their lan house back.

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