Looking for Advice before I upgrade my Mac Pro 3,1 (2008 2nd gen)

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Dear Mac Forums Community,

I am the owner of a 2008 Mac Pro tower. Here are the specs:

Model Name: Mac Pro
Model Identifier: MacPro3,1
Processor Name: Quad-Core Intel Xeon
Processor Speed: 2.8 GHz
Number of Processors: 2
Total Number of Cores: 8
L2 Cache (per Processor): 12 MB
Memory: 2 GB
Bus Speed: 1.6 GHz
Boot ROM Version: MP31.006C.B05

I am looking for help upgrading my computer with a new harddrive, ram, and to install windows 7 with bootcamp. I know i should be able to do this myself, but the truth is i am very unexperienced with upgraded hardware and it scares me a bit. That said the price for i have been quoted to just do the upgrade if i buy the hardware was $220 dollars, which is way to expensive as far as i'm concerned.

So for this little project of mine i want to do the following.
-Clean out the tower. Its dusty and i have never taken apart the bottom half of the tower to try to fully clean it out.
-Upgrade my ram from 2 gigs to 10 gigs
-add a terabyte hardrive (or add two 500 gig harddrives and raid 0 them)
-Wipe the previous harddrive and reinstall OSX lion.
-Finally install windows 7 using bootcamp.

For ram i found these two sites:
samsung SODIMM DDR3, DDR3 1333mhz SODIMM, DDR3 1333mhz memory, SODIMM DDR3 1333mhz, DDR3 ram 1333mhz
8GB Kit (4GBx2), Apple 240-pin FBDIMM, DDR2 PC2-6400 upgrades for Apple Mac Pro (8-core Xeon 5400 Series) 2nd Gen. Early 2008 Desktop/PC, CT774462 from Crucial.com

There is a clear price difference between the two that is making me feel uneasy, but the cheaper one is apparently samsung ram which is the same as the type the comes stock. I am also wondering if it is better to have 1 8gig ram module or 2 4 gigs. Is there a difference in performance based on how the ram is configured?

For a hard drive i found this. That said i know very little about hardrives or what i should be looking for. I would like a good performance drive but i don't want to spend money on a SSD:
Amazon.com: Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 SATA 16 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Hard Drive: Computers & Accessories


Perhaps most importantly though, i could really use some advice or a tutorial on how i should go about installing these upgrades. Honestly guys i know this is pretty simply stuff, but i would feel much better about it if i had some advice or a guide to look at before i do all this. Also just pointing out i do have a grounding strap to attach to the case while im doing this.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I really appreciate any help
 

Slydude

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Thank you very much for these videos. I am very appreciative!

Do you have any thoughts on what kinda of hard drive i should settle on? Is doing a raid 0 configuration worth it?
 

Slydude

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I've got version 1.1 of that machine with four drives installed. Looking at the drives in Disk Utility it appears they are from three different manufacturers. All of them seem to perform similarly.

As far as the raid 0 question I'll have to leave that to others with experience in that configuration.
 
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Use an SSD 128GB as boot drive running Lion, and installed in bay 2 a Velociraptor 600GB hard drive for cloned back up and Windows 7 Ultimate through Bootcamp. Runs very nicely.
 
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Use an SSD 128GB as boot drive running Lion, and installed in bay 2 a Velociraptor 600GB hard drive for cloned back up and Windows 7 Ultimate through Bootcamp. Runs very nicely.

Well a couple things here. So far lion has done me nothing but trouble, so in this process i'll be reverting to snow L.


Edit: Ok i looked up the pricing on SSD drives and i'm just not prepared to spend that kind of money right now... Still for the future i will expect to do this.

So i have decided to skip raiding due to price concerns. For now i'm simply going to buy a 1 tbyte drive :).

Basically i want to keep this under 300 bucks. so the 8 gigs of ram and 1 tbyte drive and copy of windows 7 will basically come out to about 300.
 
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Well the Samsung memory listed is not for you. Here is the precise specs for your Mac Pro memory from OWC. Make sure whatever you do get matches the specs.

OWC 64FB2MPK04GB 4.0GB Mac Pro Memory Matched Pair... in stock at OWC

At least four different sites have pointed my to the ram that i listed... seems to be the exact same type as far as i can tell.

This is what is currently in my system, and i read that PC2-6400 is the same as 800mhz.
Size: 1 GB
Type: DDR2 FB-DIMM
Speed: 800 MHz

http://guides.macrumors.com/Buying_RAM
I used this site to find the ram that i was looking for. in particular http://www.macramdirect.com/macpro.html#mp2 this website specifically this site for what i found, but it was more than i wanted to spend from them.

These two listings differ in that one is PC2-6400 and the other is pc-6400... from what i have read there is no difference. Also, not that when i called the company, they said it was actually micron and no t samsung memory.
http://www.macimprove.com/Stores/ShowProduct.aspx?ID=316
OWC 64FB2MPK04GB 4.0GB Mac Pro Memory Matched Pair... in stock at OWC
 
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Also, this is the site listing on mac improve where it identifies my specific unit:

PC3-8500 DDR3-1066 SODIMM, PC3-8500 DDR3 So-Dimm 1066 Mhz, PC3-8500 DDR3 1066mhz Dimm, DDR3 1066 Mhz SDRAM

When i called the company, they basically said they work in bulk and thus the cheap prices. Regardless it cost almost the same for me to 12 gigs for ram from these guys as it does for 4 gigs fro OWC. And just again, its micron rather than samsung. Typo on the website.


Definitely appreciate your help HarryB. As it stands now i'll be going with the 12 gigs to max out my slots, and then just buy a http://www.amazon.com/dp/B004IZN3YI/?tag=macforums0e4-20

I can't find a significantly cheaper model that has the same speeds, even though i really don't need a terabyte.
 

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