- May 11, 2019
- gigabyte Z270-HD3
- AMD Radeon Frontier Edittion
- Mobile Phone
do you think you could upload photos of the bios and what kernals used. Im tring to use the Iboot way of doing it on my r710 with no gpu with no luck. was woundering if there is something in my bios. or what. because I dont have access to a mac to make a thumb drive and I have the install cd for snow lep. so trying that way but not luck so far seeing if you can show some light of what is wrong on my end.I did direct install of High Sierra on DELL R710. It worked stable for 2 weeks then I got to the conclusion of no use of this build so shut id down.
1. 2x [4x cores Xeon]] showed benchmark matching similar MAC's without any surprises (Geekbench 4)
2. 72 GB RAM looks too much for anything even FCPX.
3. RAID Perc 6i (was working just great with MEGARAID drivers).
4. GPU GTX 750 2Gb. This is the only confirmed compatible one, which does not require external power.
It also requires mechanical modification of the riser card to fit the slot (therefore becomes 8x lanes, which seems to be totally OK).
No other reasonable solution was found to fit GPU inside the chassis (e.g. using 16x riser card will not help since the position
of its PCIe slot does not match the GPU's connector. Using soft riser will not help either - it simply will not fit the space available).
5. Sad to say but embedded Broadcom 1Gb LAN NIC did not work (and there are 4x of them. I tried all drivers/kexts available). Due to this SIRI will not work. iMessage, however, works OK.
6. Only USB 2.0 are built in the motherboard.
7. Extra PCIe M.2x4 lanes adapter (CDN $19) was used to boot MACOS from (older model = cheaper bus same fast) M.2x4 Samsung SSD.
8. R710 was booting Clover from the internal USB 2.0, which is OK for the server (btw my main home build boots same way).
9. HD audio was started working after fix, also my simple AUDIO>USB adapter worked OOB as well as Logitech wireless headset with mic (using its usb adapter).
10. Boots in BIOS mode. I have tried UEFI boot and was even able to see RAID volumes as well as SATA drives but was not able to actually boot at all.
Keeping in mind native R710 hardware boot cycle (with all tests off) is about 2.5 min, the whole testing becomes extremely time consuming.
To overcome #5 and #6 I got the compatible PCIe USB 3.1 card (CDN $27) worked OOB. It has USB 3.0 + TYPE C connectors.
To make this card working I did another surgery and took 12V DC off the multiple DC power wires going to SAS area.
Only needed 2 wires (ground black and +12V DC yellow).
Along with USB 3.1 HUB (3x USB 3.0 + LAN 1Gb) for CDN $26, these 2 cards completely solved initial connectivity issues.
Base box with 2x (4x cores CPU) / 72GB Ram / 1x 750W psu / 2x 300GB SAS will cost you only CDN $500.
Same with 2x (6x cores CPU) / 96GB Ram will cost CDN $600.
Robust MAC OS build using industrial server platform.
It has redundant power supply, iDRAC management module, lots of RAM, industrial RAID controller.
Draw too much power (you can use 1x 500W PSU but what's the point?). Regular PSU's are 2x 750W with load balancing).
Native power cycle (without any RAM test) including OSX is approximately 3 min.
No LAN NIC support (maybe someone finds the solution for BROADCOM NIC's?).
Requires 2x electro-mechanical surgeries.
Seems to be great for some production activities. Definitely not to become your desk-mate.
Tip: if using dummy HDMI plug, this machine can be located remotely (next room or basement)
and accessed via Apple Remote Desktop via 1Gb wired LAN providing you the required display
Any questions - please ask. I still have all the adapters/components details and screenshots of this monster and surgeries performed.