Just double check that memory works in the box.. There are some listings of what memory works. I would validate it before order.
And yes even though they list 8GB max, there are many many people showing that they work up to 16GB, for what he is doing 8 should be more than enough.
I only have 8, and run multiple VMs, etc If he is just going to run 1 os and share some files 8 should be more than sufficient.
"Correct - you don't have to use RAID. I don't (anymore)."
Really - kind of surprised at that coming from you.. Its a bit off topic, but I would be interested in your new setup. I was always pretty impressed with how you have leveraged your setup to provide for lots of storage. So are you using a 3rd party drive pooling software? Or Windows built in stuff? Something else?
Mine is running 16GB - I bought 2 of these DIMMs, although cheaper than they are today (I paid about £45):
As for your question Budman, I have 10 drives (6x1TB 2.5" and 4x3TB 3.5") in ZFS (2 arrays in RAIDZ1) being exposed via NFS and iSCSI from FreeNAS. I have a total of 160GB (64GB and 96GB) in SSDs being used as datastore on ESXi.
I still have an LSI RAID card, but I am using it as a HBA to support the drives.