I didn’t read the parts compatibility guide online before buying the RAM and graphics cards so the Shuttle wasn’t working up until last week. Since I couldn’t see anything for lack of graphics and I don’t have another DDR3 compatible machine lying around, I couldn’t test the parts. Shuttle PCs don’t beep on POST so I couldn’t even tell if the motherboard and CPU worked (power and fans worked though). The only way to proceed would be to buy a new compatible graphics card and RAM.
It turns out the GT 240 wasn’t compatible. I bought a (much faster) Radeon 5770, which is running perfectly fine on the 300W power supply. I’ve got a 500W power supply coming in, too, since I’ve put so much stuff into this little box already, might as well make sure none of it gets fried or dies from insufficient power. I also got two 2GB sticks of Transcend DDR3, which I don’t need but might was well keep. The G.Skill Ripjaws sticks work fine, so now I’ve got a whopping total of 12GB in the Shuttle.
Finally, I needed more space so I took apart my Lacie external HDD and plugged it in the Shuttle. Getting that Neil Poulton screwless case apart was a pain in the ass and I almost broke it! There’s now 300 GB out of 1.25 TB available. Definitely going to have to get a bigger HDD, then I’ll put the 250GB HDD into the Lacie case. It took some fiddling to figure out which SATA plugs to use… apparently you can’t boot from all of the SATA connections (only the first two). I’m using 3 out of 4 SATA connections now, and I don’t see where there’s room to use the last one (eSATA via PCI card?).