Does this software exist?

OK here is a thought I’ve been having…
I want a half decent gaming rig but have very few britland rupees so I’ve been trawling ebay and don’t have enough for a potato from the look of it, so I looked at servers on the off chance and was really surprised to find I can get a dual cpu 6 core xeon set up with 24gb of ram for the money I have… great! Problem being clock speed. 3.2ghz standard boost 3.6ghz not very good but possibly good enough so I have these questions that maybe one of you can help me with…

  1. I know overclocking is not an option with server motherboards but I also know that in theory bioses can be moded so does anyone here have any EXPERIENCE with doing this?
  2. I have read somewhere or other that larger cache sizes help with gaming over 2 6c 12t xeons would that in anyway help mitigate the lack of ghz in a noticeable way?
  3. As it would lack ghz but have an abundance of cores and ram is there maybe a software that can schedule the games instructions the first to cpu 0 second to cpu 1 and so on, effectively doubling the cpu speed? I think I’ve heard something like numa nodes being able to do this but I’m not sure I may have made that up possibly.
    If 3 is not a thing, why is it not a thing I’d of thought a software like that would be the first app written for a dual cpu rig?

Anyway thanks for reading any help or comments greatly appreciated. Popeye

TLDR; can you split a games instructions over 2 cpus to utilise the cores available to make up for a lack of speed?

Those cheap xeons are really old and have terrible performance per watt. If you don’t pay your own electric bill, there’s a few with decent clock speeds, usually the smaller core counts (2667 for example)

Forget about any kind of overclocking. The motherboard won’t do it, and you’re not going to hack a server grade bios, and also the CPUs themselves are locked, even if you put one in a desktop board (Xeons in x79 and x99 boards for example)

For question #3, if you have an app that is multithreaded, the OS will divide the processes across all the cores on however many physical sockets you have. Games aren’t written to be heavily multithreaded, it’s too expensive and hard to do.

Another thing to consider, servers may not be happy about running a gaming video card. The BIOS may lock it out completely, using a whitelist, or cripple the PCI slot if it detects a GPU (I have a dual xeon Asus that does this), or any number of other weird things.

It would help to know how many Boris bucks you have in mind. To frame the problem

I’m guessing you’ve not built a pc for a few years. When I were a lad it was all about the race to 1Ghz. Now it’s more about performance per watt and IPC. A 3.2ghz base modern APU will smoke a 10 year old server in many games due to instructions and faster memory. As a rule I’d avoid anything older that Haswell for gaming.

Core count is not that critical for most games. Even newest triple A games run fine on 6 cores and ok on 4.

Some amazing deals on 1st and 2nd gen Ryzen may give you what you want without breaking the bank.

Thanks for the reply mate.
Well it’s not looking good for hacking up an old server then, probably explains why it is so cheap I mean my electricity bill is included in the rent so being power hungry doesn’t matter but if I can’t overclock nor split the load over two cpus it’s looking like I need another solution

Airstrip one. Hi mate thanks for the reply astutely you guessed I’ve not built a rig for a little while now the last was a phenom 2 550 black edition that unlocked to a tri core and cost next to nothing but it seems that there is no hack like that now apart from the 775 mobo 771 xeon job but well its just old I mean if I had some of the bits yeah fine but to buy it all in? Nar not worth it? As for funds I got around £250 which I think is about eight foot three in freedom units :rofl:

Thanks for clarifying.

For £250 I’d look at a Ryzen APU like the 3200G (£80) and a b450 motherboard (£60 - £80). That way you can game at moderate specs and won’t need a GPU straight away (you would with those xeons).

Ram and storage will take the rest. If your case and PSU are decent then reuse as this setup will be less power hungry than your phenom.

Other options available in the used market but those Ryzen chips really are a game changer for budget builds.

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250 is pretty tight, I would look at used office systems running Haswell quadcore or newer with somewhat decent boost clocks. Add a simple and efficient GPU, like the Sapphire RX570 ITX and you got something.

If you want to go that route, make sure that the office rig is capable of housing a GPU (physically) and that it’s PSU is able to keep up with it.

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I am fairly sure Throttlestop (one of the most useful utilities out there) can do FIVR control on Haswell Xeons (E3-E7 v3 series) even on server boards. I’d like to test it myself, but I don’t have access to such a workstation.

It worked well for Nehalem based Xeons (W-series) in HP and Dell workstations.

Haswell has the VRMs integrated on the package itself, and for some reason even the worst offenders (aka HP/Dell Business) didn’t bother locking FIVR control… until the recent Plundervolt bs, but that’s only for Skylake and newer.

If FIVR is unlocked, you can lower voltage and increase TPL, effectively overclocking the CPU (it will run at higher speeds even under full load instead of throttling). Desktop/mobile Haswell also had 2-6 extra clock bins that could be unlocked by Throttlestop, too. If Xeons have that, an E3-1245v3 for example could run at 3.8-4GHz permanently (provided the cooling is sufficient!).

I see a few Xeon E3-xxxx v3 refurb workstations on eBay UK for around 200. They’re not bad at all - hardware quality is great on these machines as they were meant for real work, PSUs are top notch, energy efficiency is great (anything post Sandy Bridge is good enough imo, they’re no power guzzling Core 2).

You really can’t play with the scheduler, it’s the OS that takes care of that. Windows 8 and up have a rather decent one that will do approximately what you suggest (split a thread between cores). I don’t think a 6 core Haswell Xeon will be a bottleneck in games even at stock clocks, tbh.

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