Thursday 18 October 2007

System Builder Tip: Meet JOE ... Intel's new Executive Series Desktop Board

Our system builder has been testing the new DQ35JOE for over a month now. They told me that they are quite happy with the results of the tests.

So, we will be building our corporate systems on the new Intel Desktop Board DQ35JOE from now on.

In the mean time, we are going to build a series of Core 2 Quad Q6600s on the JOE we will obtain through distribution. The systems, around 5 or 6 to start, will be used in a training lab we are putting together in the shop here.

Here is a side-by-side with our current corporate system mainstay, the DQ965GFEKR series:

Left: DQ965GF - Right: DQ35JOE

It is pretty obvious that this is not just a step up in a board revision with a relabel. We are seeing 32bit 33MHz PCI go the way of the Dodo. Kinda reminds me of the PCI replacing ISA days. For that matter, PCI 32/33 has been around for a long time in computer years.

And, check out the very left hand bottom of JOE: There is no PS/2 connectors! :D YAY! Anyone else remember the promise made somewhere around 10 years ago? Wow! It sure took one heck of a long time for that one to pass. Same with the now absent parallel and floppy ports!

The new JOE has dual video out. One DVI and one VGA that will now support dual monitors native to the on board video. That is a pretty kewl feature. In some cases where high powered video is not required, this will save a few bucks for our clients that do things like desktop publishing and the like.

JOE comes with an eSATA connector - in red - that has an external mounting bracket with cable that can be mounted at the rear of the case. While eSATA is definitely a neat feature, it presents a bit of a predicament. That predicament is data protection.

This is one place where a smaller client with no Software Assurance/Enterprise Agreements really should consider BitLocker.

Despite all of the crying about Windows Vista Ultimate and the so called "lack of features", BitLocker is, to us, the "killer app" in Windows Vista Ultimate. In the Corporate World, all of the other stuff is fluff ... well ... except maybe for the partners or executives. ;)

BitLocker should be an easy sell to any client requiring client data security. Think doctors, lawyers, accountants, dentists, and any other professional or trade where client/customer data needs to be protected.

Tie BitLocker into that external USB HDD that is mirroring the internal hard drive, some training on the use and rotation of the drives, and a second drive (we use different colour enclosures) for off-site rotations, and we have have a nice little security package we can propose to our clients.

The Intel product sites: And remember, the product life cycle may be at least two years, but that does not mean that we will not run into some sort of revision level to CPU compatibility next year!

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists

*All Mac on SBS posts are posted on our in-house iMac via the Safari Web browser.

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