New Dell PowerEdge Servers Designed for Businesses on a Budget

Dell's focus on small and midsize businesses is again apparent in its introduction of a new portfolio of PowerEdge server systems designed for those businesses with limited IT budgets. Among the new Dell systems are four energy-efficient, quick-setup servers and a line of uninterruptible power supplies.

During Dell's Aug. 27 earnings call, chief financial officer Brian Gladden fielded several questions about the mobile phone prototype Dell had delivered to China Mobile before finally remarking that he didn't much care to dwell on the phone. "From our standpoint, we're spending an awful lot more energy on the enterprise side of our business than on launching phones," said Gladden.

Now, Dell is making good on the promise to focus on its business customers.

On Sept. 9, Dell introduction of a new product portfolio for small and medium businesses, a market of particular interest for Dell and one that follows its March introduction of 14 enterprise products that included servers, workstations and storage systems.

Included in the new SMB portfolio are four, eleventh-generation Dell PowerEdge servers and a line of uninterruptible power supplies (UPS)

"The mantra of Dell is around choice," said Sally Stevens, vice president of platform marketing for Dell, referring to the four new servers.

The PowerEdge T110 and T310 are both tower servers. Stevens dubbed the T110 "My First Server," emphasizing its good fit for very small companies just taking their first step toward needing a server. It's a plug-and-play server in a desktop-size chassis that offers security and basic systems management. It also offers the ability to add external eSATA (external Serial ATA) storage directly to it, to simplify the transition of data from a desktop to a first server.

The PowerEdge T310, by contrast, is a one-socket tower server for growing, larger businesses. It offers DDR3 (double data rate 3) memory, advanced systems management options, and the ability to support up to four hard drives in its chassis. It's designed to be quiet and have the option of existing out in a retail or office space. It also offers an optional interactive LCD screen on its front for easy monitoring, and it's 65 percent more energy efficient than its predecessor.

The PowerEdge R210 is more of a first-rack server. Stevens called it "the cute server," and its 15.5-inch chassis depth makes that not seem a ridiculous descriptor. Its tiny size is meant to accommodate businesses where space is at a premium - a business might have a more difficult time deciding where to put the water cooler than this tiny server - and it additionally boasts the smallest energy footprint of any Dell PowerEdge server. It's 88 percent more efficient than the previous-generation model.

It features DDR3 memory, and like the T110 it accepts eSATA storage for easily transferring information. And like the T110 and the T310, the R210 features the new Intel Xeon 3400 series processor, which the chip giant just introduced Sept. 8. These Xeon 3400 processors are based on the Nehalem microarchitecture

Finally, the PowerEdge R510 is a 2-socket, 2U (3.5-inch) multi-purpose rack server for mid-size enterprises and remote offices with a balanced need for internal storage and redundancy. It features a chassis with a depth of 24 inches. It's also energy optimized, and unlike the others features Intel Xeon 5500 series processors, plus DDR3 memory. Customers can choose a 4- or 8-hard disk drive chassis.

All four PowerEdge servers will be available starting later in September for a starting price of $599.

The UPS models, 28 in all, are built to run at a 95 percent or greater efficiency rating and offer tool-less racking, networking cards for remote monitoring and short depths, enabling them to be put into computer closets with 2-post racks. The UPS models will be available in October, starting at $269.

With its new offerings, Dell is looking to meet the needs of businesses of all sizes, from the smallest looking for simplicity, mid-size businesses with a more intense need for reliability, and growing businesses wanting assurance that their data is protected at all times.

"Small and medium businesses around the world are looking for technology solutions that deliver more security, greater reliability and lower operating costs," said Steve Felice, president of Dell's Global Small and Medium Business unit, in a statement.

"With today's announcement, Dell is even better positioned to help our customers be more efficient so they can spend more time growing their business and less time managing their IT investments."