HP Crafts ProLiant MicroServer Cube for Small Business

 
 
By Wayne Rash  |  Posted 2013-07-12 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

HP's ProLiant MicroServer Generation 8 is not the hulking 2U server that you see in the data center, but instead is a stand-alone cube of storage and electronics. Designed for small and midsize businesses, it has the aesthetic design to be set out in plain sight on a handy tabletop. It can be ordered with a purpose-built Gigabit Ethernet switch, and it runs quietly enough to be good company in the office. The MicroServer Gen 8 comes in a nearly tool-free chassis. Everything is accessible. It's easy to replace parts, and you can change the look of the device so that it fits better into your office environment. The HP PS1810 switch supports 8 Gigabit Ethernet ports. It's a managed switch that communicates in-band with the HP ILO (integrated lights-out) version 4.5, which is the same server management utility that comes with HP's data center servers. A key feature of the MicroServer Gen 8 is its low price: The base price is only $449 without disk drives or an operating system. This includes the base server with a Celeron processor, 2GB of memory and a basic RAID hard drive controller. The server can run Microsoft Windows Server, Red Hat Enterprise Linux or SUSE Linux Enterprise Server.

 
 
 
  • HP Crafts ProLiant MicroServer Cube for Small Business

    by Wayne Rash
    1 - HP Crafts ProLiant MicroServer Cube for Small Business
  • The ProLiant MicroServer Is HP's Server in a Cube

    The HP ProLiant MicroServer Gen 8 comes out of the box with a pair of USB connectors in the front and a silver door that conceals up to four hard disks. When the unit is turned on, there's a blue glow that shines from the bottom. The DVD drive shown here is optional.
    2 - The ProLiant MicroServer Is HP's Server in a Cube
  • The Silver Door Hides Four Removable Hard Disks

    The door on the front of the HP ProLiant MicroServer swings open to reveal four easily removable hard disks. Note that these are not hot plug drives. Also behind the door is the single tool necessary for servicing the MicroServer—a wrench that fits two sizes of machine screws. I never actually discovered where this wrench was necessary, since everything seemed to be accessible without tools.
    3 - The Silver Door Hides Four Removable Hard Disks
  • Removing the Cover Is Easy and Reveals All

    The cover of the ProLiant MicroServer comes free after loosening two thumbscrews on the back of the server, allowing it to be moved slightly to the rear, then lifted straight up. Note the blue labels showing how other components are removed.
    4 - Removing the Cover Is Easy and Reveals All
  • Even the Power Supply Is Easy to Replace if Necessary

    The power supply of the HP ProLiant MicroServer is easily accessible and clearly labeled. If necessary, the 150-watt power supply can be removed easily and replaced.
    5 - Even the Power Supply Is Easy to Replace if Necessary
  • HP Designed the ProLiant MicroServer for Easy Service

    Ever find that your server's CMOS backup battery had died and replacement required taking the whole server apart, then breaking out the soldering iron for what should have been a simple job? Here it's a simple job. There's the battery behind the main motherboard power connector where replacing it requires only that you lift the battery out and pop a new one in. Note that other connectors are also readily accessible.
    6 - HP Designed the ProLiant MicroServer for Easy Service
  • DVD Removal Is a Snap

    The DVD drive is easy to remove and replace. Just press down on the blue tab with the arrow, then remove the power and data connector. That's it. You can see here that the entire job can be accomplished in seconds.
    7 - DVD Removal Is a Snap
  • Even Memory Module Access Is Easy

    Rotate the ProLiant MicroServer to the other side and you'll find the memory DIMMs at your fingertips. You can also remove the front bezel by unlocking the blue tab.
    8 - Even Memory Module Access Is Easy
  • Cables Discreetly at the Rear

    Most of the connections on the HP ProLiant MicroServer are at the rear so cables can stay out of sight. On the upper right you'll see the standard NEMA power connector and a cable fastener to keep the power plug from being pulled out by accident. Note that there's only one power connector; this server doesn't have redundant power supplies. Below the power connector is the cover plate for the expansion card. The two blue knobs halfway down are the thumbscrews for removing the cover. Next to the expansion card cover is an Ethernet connector for the HP Integrated Lights Out functionality. In the lower left corner are two more Ethernet ports, a VGA connector and four USB connectors. The two that are next to the VGA connector are USB 3.0.
    9 - Cables Discreetly at the Rear
  • Make a Fashion Statement in Your Server Room

    Suppose you're not happy with the boring silver door that comes on the HP ProLiant MicroServer. You can choose other colors, including a sleek black door, or you can have blue or red. There is no functional difference, but you can choose colors that you find snazzy.
    10 - Make a Fashion Statement in Your Server Room
  • Gigabit Ethernet Switch in Precarious Perch

    The square indentation in the top of the server is there to keep the matching Gigabit Ethernet switch from sliding off. As you can tell from how shallow it is, it's not very effective.
    11 - Gigabit Ethernet Switch in Precarious Perch
  • Tying Down the PS1810 Ethernet Switch

    This is the Ethernet switch that's designed to fit on top of the ProLiant MicroServer. While it fits nicely, by the time you add a power cable and eight Ethernet cables, this becomes a very insecure perch. Your best shot at getting the switch to stay in place will involve a little after-market Velcro. The PS1810 is a fully managed switch that supports non-blocking throughput at 8G bps. HP's management software controls the switch.
    12 - Tying Down the PS1810 Ethernet Switch
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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