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+ - Optimum Hardware for Visual Studio Development?

Submitted by
blaster151 writes "What would your "dream development machine" look like and how would you configure it for performance?

My team is working on a large software system on the Visual Studio 2005 platform (over a thousand source files). We have fairly fast machines, but they often take 15-20 seconds to do a complete rebuild and since this happens rather often I can't help but wonder how to eke out better performance. Our developers typically have VS2005 and database client tools concurrently, but we don't usually run local databases on our machines so that's less of a consideration.

I'm in a position to do some hardware recommendations and I want to understand how to prioritize the following factors:
  1. Processor (How much does a coding/build environment like VS2005 benefit from having a Core Duo processor as opposed to a traditional, higher-end CPU?)
  2. RAM (Obviously, more is good; we currently have a minimum of 1.5GB per developer)
  3. Disk (Is SCSI worth the price difference?)
  4. Laptop (Any drawbacks or considerations if we go the mobile route?)
I am also interested in configuration tips (whether it's worth having a separate internal drive for the the paging file, etc.)

So, to restate the question, what would your "dream development machine" look like and how would you configure it?"

Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of tapes. -- Dr. Warren Jackson, Director, UTCS