Asus serves up compact machine

Asus has launched a server which can also double up as a workstation – and is still small enough to fit on your desktop. The company claims the AP1720-E1, which stands just over half a metre tall, is the smallest machine in its class available on the market.

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By  Peter Branton Published  January 14, 2004

Asus has launched a server which can also double up as a workstation – and is still small enough to fit on your desktop. The company claims the AP1720-E1, which stands just over half a metre tall, is the smallest machine in its class available on the market. The AP1720-E1 is certainly compact with dimensions of 43cm x 22cm x 51cm, and it weighs in under the 20kg mark. In the release on the product, Asus stresses that smallness of size doesn’t mean lack of features, with the dual-3.06GHz architecture being complemented with up to eight SCSI 15,000rpm hot-swappable hard drives. With an AGP 8x socket, it also provides a lot of flexibility in how it is configured. For a server, users can select a low-end graphics card but if you want to turn it into a workstation, then Asus is confident it is up to the job. The company says it has conducted thorough compatibility tests with graphics solutions from Nvidia, ATI and 3D Labs, and it provides a list of recommended graphics cards to assist users in building a powerful workstation. The AP1720-E1 is based on Intel’s 875P chipset, and Asus says it allows for an easy overclocking solution, you can adjust the FSB settings in the BIOS and obtain performance of up to 3.5GHz. The layout has been designed to provide a quiet computing environment, with wider spacing between hard drives to increase airflow and a fan control system that automatically adjusts fan speeds according to system loading. For storage, the AP120-E1 comes with a hard disk cage that supports four internal or hot-swappable hard disks. This can be expanded with the addition of an external cage for four more hot-swappable hard disks, or you can choose an internal cage to enable long card and four internal hard disks. It employs a module design that converts the 5.25-inch space on top to accommodate three hard disks and one slim CD-Rom drive, meaning the server can support up to 11 hard disks. The server also provides the capability to support Intel’s next generation Linderhurst and Turnwater chipsets, according to Asus. The AP1720-E1 is available in the Middle East from now, and will cost around $565 to $900, depending on configuration.

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