VMWare Server Hardware - Refurb Dell or HP

Discussion in 'Virtualized Computing' started by rosco, May 15, 2016.

  1. rosco

    rosco Gawd

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    I want to get a refurb server to run VMWare on. I am thinking a Dell R710 or a HP DL380. I want to add my own SATA drives to it though (3.5") as cheap extra storage. Is that possible with a R710 or DL380?

    Any recommendations on something you see on ebay that you would recommend?

    I'm OK with the extra noise and potential extra power usage.

    Thanks!
     
  2. dclive

    dclive n00b

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    The noise would drive me up the wall - until I got the power bill. Any reason not to just get a small NUC, cram it with RAM, and call it a day? Maybe add some shared storage too?
     
  3. Livewyre

    Livewyre n00b

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    If you can find a Dell PowerEdge C1100, I would go that route. I have one. it is excellent on power, but the fans are a bit loud. Dual processor and I have 112GB of RAM in mine. I am thinking of moving it into a 4U case for more room (bigger fans, less noise) and also to add more HDDs. Currently it only has 4 x 3.5" bays, which are all occupied. As far as Dell vs HP goes, its a crap shoot really. I have had both and prefer Dells over HPs. Hope this helps...
     
  4. rosco

    rosco Gawd

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    I think it is going to be cheaper when you factor everything in including storage to just get something like a Dell R710 as long as it will accept standard SATA drives and not dell branded drives.

    Is the main reason for the C1100 power savings? Otherwise, part of what I like about the R710 is it does have extra bays I can use for plenty of additional storage.

    I have more experience with Dell so I'll probably go that route unless the HPs are more friendly for what I'm trying to do.
     
  5. farscapesg1

    farscapesg1 2[H]4U

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    I've got a couple R710's I use for my home environment and haven't had any issues with "non-Dell" drives. I'm using the 8x2.5" model, not the 3.5" bay ones though. I have 1 Gen 1 model and 2 Gen 2 models without any issues on the drive side. Only one is on 24x7 though, but it is in a 24u rack right next to my office desk and while there is a hum, the noise isn't too bad since I still take conference calls in the room.

    Just for some numbers, my R710 Gen 2 server with 8 drives (6x 320GB 7200 RPM, 1x240GB SSD, 1x80GB SSD), 64GB RAM, and dual X5650 procs averages about 175 Watts.

    My Gen 1 server with 1 80GB SSD, 48GB RAM, and a X5550 proc averages 140W which seem ridiculously high and is why I'll probably get rid of it and free up some space in my rack. Not to mention is just sounds louder than the Gen 2.. which as far as I can tell use the same fans.

    Both those are running off of a single PSU since I don't have separate circuits in my home office and on a single UPS it didn't make sense to me to run both PSUs. I just have the second PSU pulled out slightly so the server doesn't throw "non-redundant psu" errors.

    As a comparison, my I've got a spare Supermicro X8SIL-F and Xeon X3440 with 32GB RAM, which seems to run at about 80W with a single hard drive drive and a dual port fiber card. I'm guessing that is due to the PSU (even though it is 80+ rated) since the numbers are almost double what I've seen on homeserver.com for that setup. So, at the cost of an extra 100W, I get dual procs, double memory, and double the number of NICs using one of the R710's, which is about $6/month difference at our electricity rates.
     
  6. ChRoNo16

    ChRoNo16 [H]ard|Gawd

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    Damn... my T7400 uses more electricity than that.... and yours is way more powerful...
     
  7. peanuthead

    peanuthead [H]ardness Supreme

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    To give an idea on power usage for certain system - I have a mostly new dual E5-2670, Intel server MB, 128GB RAM, 3 fans, IPMI, and hot swap cage that idles at around 125 watts. I built the server and never used it. Go figure.
     
  8. rosco

    rosco Gawd

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    Well, sounds like finding a Gen 2 model makes a lot of sense. Is that how they are listed.... R710 Gen 2?
     
  9. farscapesg1

    farscapesg1 2[H]4U

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    Yeah, I would recommend the Gen 2 version if you care about sound. I've tried everything with my Gen 1 and the lowest I can get the fans to spin is at 5400-6000 RPM, while the Gen 2 hums at only 4200-4800 RPM. It's not a lot.. but with the rack sitting right next to my office desk that extra 1200 RPM makes a noticeable difference, heck I can even hear the difference sitting in the living room. The funny thing is those RPM numbers on the Gen 1 was with no load (literally, just running esxi with no active guests), while the Gen 2 numbers are a server using 3/4 of my 64GB RAM and 40-5% CPU. I don't want to think what the Gen 1 would ramp up to under a comparable load. Of course it could just be the older X5550 proc making things run a little hotter.. who knows.

    As for determining the version, Dell claims there is a roman numeral II on the top left of the of the server faceplate.. but neither of my Gen 2's have that. The only way I can tell is using the iDrac or OMSA. Gen 2 has different motherboard model numbers. I know I found the model numbers listed somewhere else, but this site shows Gen 1 vs Gen 2 models. In theory, everything I read says the only real difference is support for 95W+ CPUs on the Gen2, but obviously that isn't my experience at least with the fans.