Question Server build advice < $AU2000 -- # of cores and reliability a big factor

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Yes. Ypu can buy 1x32Gb. But thats where it gets messy.

Mainstream mobo's are 2 channel. A+B. Ram is every channel capable, if you use 1 stick, it's in single channel, 2x sticks (in the right ports) is dual channel, on enthusiast class mobo's 4x sticks (in the right ports) is quad channel.

Same with the ports, got to be right. 2x sticks in wrong ports is still single channel, 4x sticks in the wrong ports is still dual or flex channel.

Ram size adds. 1x4Gb + 1x4Gb = 8Gb. Bandwidth remains the same. (3200MHz x 8bits = 25.6Gb/s).
Channels adds bandwidth. (3200MHz x 8bits = 25.6Gb/s x 2 channels = 51.2Gb/s)

That can be an important factor when moving large file amounts. If you look at a server board, they have serious amounts of ram slots, just for that reason. Not only to have enough slots to maximize ram size, but to take advantage of the additions of quad channel ram. (128Gb x 8 = 1Tb. 2666MHz x 8bit = 21.3Gb/s, x4 channel = 85.3Gb/s.

Slower ram can move significantly more data in that case.

Many games use uber small files, only a few Kb to a few Mb per file, so single channel ram and dual channel ram sees little to no difference. It's in large file transfers, several Gb each file, that the bandwidth of dual channel gets obvious. You may not tax 16Gb with almost any game, too many small files easily/quickly replaced, but production or other large file use programs are slower to push, stay resident etc and you can not only need 64Gb, but the bandwidth size of dual or even quad channel ram.

You mobo is dual channel. With all 4 slots filled, it's still dual channel, A+B. Take advantage of freebies, stick with 2 or 4 sticks, 4 sticks has a few drawbacks as well though.
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Feb 17, 2009
As an addendum to this one...there were some issues:

1. The SF450 cables are too short for an ATX board, making it necessary to buy a bunch of cables (or cable extensions)

2. The MA410M does not have mounting brackets for the LGA1200 motherboard (despite the manufacturers site saying it's compatible. NVM, it does.

3. The huge fans on the MA410M obstruct the first RAM slot on the motherboard IF you use the memory specified in the build (it has large protruberant plastic at the top of the RAM).

Not an ideal set of outcomes for the build, but hopefully not insurmountable: the second set of memory needs to be small (no fancy LEDs). The cables are just $$$, but really annoying the Corsair don't give a return option or a cable type selection.
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