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Need help building a Linux machine for Java development and data mining


Hello everyone!

I’m hoping to build a machine for my work soon and I was hoping to get some advice from knowledgable people here. I already have a display (Dell P2715Q) and all other peripherals, so I’m really interested only in the guts of it.

My budget is ideally around 1500 EUR (so, around $1700). I do CPU and disk intensive tasks. I don’t care about gaming, but I have a 4k display which I’d like to be able to use flawlessly on Linux. I live in Serbia, but I can also buy some hardware in the US as I travel there often.

Here is what I do:

  • I develop in Java and I also do some data mining (Postgres and file rummaging). My tasks are CPU and disk intensive, and I don’t parallelize much of my work, so single core performance is important (though I still do some parallelization and need cores).
  • I usually keep maxing out the CPU for 30 to 90 seconds at a time, with pauses to fix whatever code I have, which may be few seconds or half an hour, and then I max it out again. Meanwhile, less intensive stuff is happening in the background - I like to have Youtube on most of the time to listen and watch to talks / and music videos.
  • I do all of this using Linux.

Here is some ideas that I had about hardware:

  • I need to have 32 GB of memory.
  • For a CPU I need a good balance of number of cores and speed per core (or maybe I completely misunderstand how it works - ideally I want a lot of everything, but if I had to choose, I’d want single core performance rather than a zillion slow cores).
  • For graphics, I need to run Dell P2715Q, which is a 4k monitor (which has Displayport, Mini displayport and MHL/HDMI, whatever that is). I’m not interested in games at all.
  • I’d like to have 512GB of fast storage.
  • Case can be of any size really, no restrictions there, and while I’d like to be on quiet side, that’s not a must either.

As far as graphics go: I just need to be able to push a 4k display with Gnome, though it would be nice to future-proof with an ability to connect multiple hidpi monitors. I have great experience on Linux with integrated Intel graphics, but anything that works well for desktop use on Linux (with compositors and all and without tearing etc.) will be good.

I’m also not really sure about i7 vs i9 vs Threadripper and I have no idea what would work best for my workload.

I am looking forward to any recommendations!