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Thread: Dell Deals!

  1. #1

    Thumbs up Dell Deals!

    I was looking around at a bunch of places such as Rack Mounts Etc for a decent Dual QC machine. I never thought that I could afford Dell direct, so I started looking at Supermicro systems.

    Then, for kicks, I decided to price something out with Dell. I am pretty amazed at the price.

    They are giving away free processor upgrades, free raid controllers, and big discounts.

    PowerEdge 2950 (2U)
    -Quad Core Intel® Xeon® E5335, 2x4MB Cache, 2.0GHz, 1333MHz FSB
    -Additional Processor DISCOUNTED UPGRADE! Quad Core Xeon E5335, 2x4MB Cache, 2.0GHz

    -No Operating System

    -Memory 4GB 667MHz (4x1GB), Dual Ranked DIMMs

    -Primary Hard Drive 250GB 7.2K RPM Serial ATA 3Gbps 3.5-in HotPlug Hard Drive
    -2nd Hard Drive 250GB 7.2K RPM Serial ATA 3Gbps 3.5-in HotPlug Hard Drive
    -3rd Hard Drive 250GB 7.2K RPM Serial ATA 3Gbps 3.5-in HotPlug Hard Drive
    -Primary Controller FREE! PERC 5/i, x6 Backplane, Integrated Controller Card
    -Backplane 1x6 Backplane for 3.5-inch Hard Drives
    -Hard Drive Configuration Integrated SAS/SATA RAID 5, PERC 5/i Integrated

    -Network Adapter Dual Embedded Broadcom® NetXtreme II 5708 Gigabit Ethernet NIC

    -CD/DVD Drive 24X IDE CD-RW/DVD ROM Drive
    -No Floppy Drive for x6 Backplane

    -Power Supply Non-Redundant Power Supply

    -Hardware Support Services 3Yr BASIC SUPPORT: 5x10 HW-Only, 5x10 NBD Onsite

    All for $2034 shipped! Am I not mistaken that this is a phenomenal price?

    Also, what do you think about this setup? Would you make any changes if this was your purchase?

    Thanks for reading.

  2. #2
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    i've seen offers that compare to that setup, but - yes, its a pretty good price with those configs!

    thanks for letting us know

  3. #3
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    That is good, the only thing I recommend is that you upgrade to the new Xeon processors, generation E54XX, they area bit faster, use less power, have 2 X 6mb of cache, and I think the 2.5ghz are priced around the same as what you have configured.

    We purchased a Dell 1u 1950 Enhanced right before christmas for 1800 out of the door with:

    1 Quad Core Intel Xeon 2.5ghz (NEW SERIES E54XX)
    4 Gigs Of Ram
    2 x 250gb 7200 RPM drives in RAID 1
    Intel PRO Dual Gigabit Adapter
    CD/DVD COmbo RW
    1 Power Supply With the Ability To Add Dual
    3 Year Warr

    Also, how does RAID 5 work with three drives? Do you still get redundancy?
    Last edited by JustinK101; 12-28-2007 at 02:59 AM.

  4. #4
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    The minimum you need are three.

    Read up http://acnc.com/04_01_05.html
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  5. #5
    Thanks for the advice on the CPU. I will price out the chip you are speaking of.

    Yes, you need three minimum. With three drives you get about 67% of the total container, and you can lose one drive. As you add more drived to a RAID-5, the amount of disks you can lose increases.

    Does anyone have any experience with the 10-15k SAS drives over the standard 7200 drives? The SAS drives are very expensive, and I'm not sure if it's worth it.
    Last edited by slypete; 12-28-2007 at 08:17 AM. Reason: Typo

  6. #6
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    If for use in a shared hosting environment, go for SCSI/SAS as the bottleneck of your system will be your slow SATA drives before you get anywhere close to using up your 8 CPU cores.
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  7. #7
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    Definately go with SAS drives... makes a massive amount of difference, moreso than a CPU or RAM upgrade will...

    2x SAS 10K's in RAID1 will probably give much better performance than your SATA RAID5 setup. Remember that RAID5 will also bottleneck your writes, which is a big no-no if you're using this for any database applications.

    Dan
    Last edited by dkitchen; 12-28-2007 at 12:39 PM.

  8. #8
    What about setting up 3X 10k SAS in a RAID-5? Is the RAID-5 write bottleneck noticable?

    Thanks!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by sly596 View Post
    What about setting up 3X 10k SAS in a RAID-5? Is the RAID-5 write bottleneck noticable?

    Thanks!
    What are you using the server for?

    It will have an effect but depending on what you're using it for the difference may have a positive or negative impact..

  10. #10
    My intent is to run multiple virtual machines on this server.

    Each VM will provide shared hosting; some of the accounts will rely on MySQL heavily.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by sly596 View Post
    Thanks for the advice on the CPU. I will price out the chip you are speaking of.

    Yes, you need three minimum. With three drives you get about 67% of the total container, and you can lose one drive. As you add more drived to a RAID-5, the amount of disks you can lose increases.

    Does anyone have any experience with the 10-15k SAS drives over the standard 7200 drives? The SAS drives are very expensive, and I'm not sure if it's worth it.

    They are.

    All our new production boxes have the SAS drives.(Dell PE1950s and 2950s)

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by sly596 View Post
    My intent is to run multiple virtual machines on this server.

    Each VM will provide shared hosting; some of the accounts will rely on MySQL heavily.
    You definately don't want to be using RAID5 or SATA disks then.

    Go for 2x SAS in RAID1 or 4x in RAID10.

    Dan

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by dkitchen View Post
    You definately don't want to be using RAID5 or SATA disks then.

    Go for 2x SAS in RAID1 or 4x in RAID10.
    Yep - to echo Dan's comments, you will not want to run VM's under RAID5 or SATA.

    We've got 2 standalone VM servers (VMWare) that sit outside our VM cluster. They are both stand along boxes and have a 2 SAS 15k drives in RAID1 for the VM Server software and then the VM's actually go on a 4x SAS 15k RAID10 setup.

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  14. #14
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    I've found that here in the UK the Dell outlet store is amazing. I've bought a few 2950's from them for bargain prices. Look at the refurb part of their website, then give them a call. I was ready to spend £3000 on a very well specced server and the lady instantly said she could do it for £2000 without me asking! 3yr onsite warranty included so no probs with the kit there, its unused but misordered stuff usually.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by sly596 View Post
    Yes, you need three minimum. With three drives you get about 67% of the total container, and you can lose one drive. As you add more drived to a RAID-5, the amount of disks you can lose increases.
    Not true. Even with 6 disks in RAID 5 you can still only afford to lose 1 disk. Unless of course you split those 6 disks into two RAID 5 containers, then you could afford to lose 1 from each container.

    Quote Originally Posted by sly596 View Post
    Does anyone have any experience with the 10-15k SAS drives over the standard 7200 drives? The SAS drives are very expensive, and I'm not sure if it's worth it.
    It really depends on what you're doing with the disk. If you've got something that's really disk I/O intensive (say, large Oracle DB), then SAS is worth the extra cash. If you see a lot of I/O wait on your current setup, then maybe SAS is worth it. Otherwise it's probably overkill

    edit: oops missed the bit about VM's. SAS is definitely the way to go, and as Dan and Sirius said, RAID10 is the go.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscreant View Post
    Not true. Even with 6 disks in RAID 5 you can still only afford to lose 1 disk. Unless of course you split those 6 disks into two RAID 5 containers, then you could afford to lose 1 from each container.
    This may have been what you are saying (keep in mind I'm not the biggest tech when it comes to things like RAID) but I believe it depends on how many disks you assign to be parity disks.

    i.e. If you have 6 drives and 2 parity disks, you should be able to lose up to 2 drives without losing dating.

    I could be wrong of course.
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  17. #17
    Sirius is correct: I was mistaken. My apologies:

    "At least three disks are required for RAID 5. No matter how many disks used, an amount equal to one of them will be used for the parity data and cannot be used for user data."

    "In a RAID 5, you can lose any one disk and expect to safely restore the data on it after you replace it."

    The more I read about Raid-5 vs. Raid-10, Raid-10 is the clear winner. In fact, I'm beginning to believe that there are absolutely no circumstances where a Raid-5 should be used over a Raid-1 or Raid-10.
    Last edited by slypete; 12-28-2007 at 09:04 PM. Reason: Additional Info

  18. #18
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    Your analogy is correct. However, Raid5 is very useful for some situations such as large backup storage arrays. RAID 10 is very costly and when it comes to a backup storage array where it is rarely used RAID5 is a clear choice over RAID 10.

    As mentioned before, RAID 10 is by far your best choice for the type of applications you intend to use.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donner
    This may have been what you are saying (keep in mind I'm not the biggest tech when it comes to things like RAID) but I believe it depends on how many disks you assign to be parity disks.
    RAID5 always uses one parity "disk" (the parity data is usually striped across the disks, but one disk worth of storage is used for parity data). RAID6 is like RAID5 but with two sets of parity.

    Quote Originally Posted by sly596
    The more I read about Raid-5 vs. Raid-10, Raid-10 is the clear winner. In fact, I'm beginning to believe that there are absolutely no circumstances where a Raid-5 should be used over a Raid-1 or Raid-10.
    The reason is usually price, as you end up using a lot more of your disks for redundancy with mirroring.

    With RAID6 you can also lose any two drives and recover. With RAID10, there is some chance involved. Depending on which drives go down, you could lose half your drives and be fine, or you could lose two drives and have data loss.

    In general, though, cost is considered the major downside of RAID10.

    http://www.acnc.com/04_00.html is a pretty good site for descriptions of various common setups.

  20. #20
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    Go for RAID5 with a hotspare.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by dazmanultra View Post
    Go for RAID5 with a hotspare.
    Have you even read the thread? Have you tried running SQL intensive apps / virtual environments on a RAID5 volume? Please go test, and then let me know when your database falls over.

    n fact, I'm beginning to believe that there are absolutely no circumstances where a Raid-5 should be used over a Raid-1 or Raid-10.
    RAID5 is generally used for file storage on fileservers, that kind of thing as it's more cost effective per GB, especially where you don't need the performance of RAID10.

    Dan
    Last edited by dkitchen; 12-29-2007 at 11:48 AM.

  22. #22
    Thanks for the advice everyone. I think this thread has swayed me to go with Dual Xeon's 1.6GHz 1066MHz bus, 8GB RAM, and two 146GB 10k RPM SAS drives configured in a RAID 1 over my original configuration.

    What do you think? I will have plenty of bays available to add additional HD's as needed. As I add more drives, I will probably switch to RAID-10.

  23. #23
    <deleted>

    No point in correcting something that was corrected umpteen times already :-)
    Last edited by AsmoB; 12-31-2007 at 07:47 AM. Reason: Lack of coffee

  24. #24
    After getting the advice in this thread, I went with the following config:

    Dell PE2950 (2U)
    Dual (2x) Quad Core 1.6 GHz Xeons 5310
    8GB 667MHz (4x2GB w/ 4x empty) Fully Buffered ECC RAM
    6x 146GB SAS 10k RPM Drives in RAID-10
    DRAC5(IPMI)
    Non-Redundant PSU

    This should serve me and my clients well

    Thanks for the help w/ picking out this server everyone.

  25. #25
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    All for $2034 shipped! Am I not mistaken that this is a phenomenal price?
    No it is not. If you like phenomenal prices, take a look at www.rackmountsetc.com

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by paulius View Post
    No it is not. If you like phenomenal prices, take a look at www.rackmountsetc.com
    I just went to the site you sent me to. The server I bought cannot even be configured there because they only offer 1U servers. After adding the forth drive I was already over the price I paid for the Dell shipped. I still had two more drives to add and the IPMI card. Nevermind the extra $100 for the additional U.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by paulius View Post
    No it is not. If you like phenomenal prices, take a look at www.rackmountsetc.com
    It seems like a pretty good price to me, and RME is not any cheaper.

    Processor: Dual - Intel Xeon Clovertown E5335 2.00GHz 1333MHz FSB 8MB Cache Quad-Core
    Mainboard: Supermicro X7DVL-I - Vid - Dual Gig-E Lan - 6 Dimm - 16GB Max
    Memory: 4GB - DDR2 667 - FB-DIMM ECC - Lifetime Warranty (4 x 1024)
    RAID: 3Ware 9550SXU-4LP 4 Port SATA2 Raid Controller Card - Raid 0 - 1 - 5 - 10
    First Drive: 250GB 16MB Western Digital SATA2 Hard Drive
    Second Drive: 250GB 16MB Western Digital SATA2 Hard Drive
    Third Drive: 250GB 16MB Western Digital SATA2 Hard Drive
    Fourth Drive: Please Select
    Multimedia: Please Select
    Removable Media: Please Select
    Rackmount Chassis: 1U Supermicro SC811TQ-520 (520W, 2 Hotswap Hdd, 1 CD, 1 Floppy bays, 24 Inch)
    Operating System: No Selection Made
    Mounting Type: 1U Supermicro Rail Kit (Included)
    Support Level: Standard 3 Year Parts & Labor with Standard Replacement
    Co-Location With Colo4Dallas: Co-Location with Colo4Dallas (Receive 10% off each month for 2 months as our special!)
    Please put "Rackmounts Etc Referral" in the comment section of Colo4Dallas's website at time of order.
    Sub-Total: $2053
    Sales Tax: $159.11 (California residents only)

  28. Quote Originally Posted by sly596 View Post
    After getting the advice in this thread, I went with the following config:

    Dell PE2950 (2U)
    Dual (2x) Quad Core 1.6 GHz Xeons 5310
    8GB 667MHz (4x2GB w/ 4x empty) Fully Buffered ECC RAM
    6x 146GB SAS 10k RPM Drives in RAID-10
    DRAC5(IPMI)
    Non-Redundant PSU

    This should serve me and my clients well

    Thanks for the help w/ picking out this server everyone.
    if not too late, make sure you order Xeon E5405 Harpertown's instead of E5310 Clovertown.
    E5405 --> quad 2.0G cores, 12M L2 cache, 1333fsb, 80watt max
    E5310 --> quad 1.6G cores, 8M L2 cache, 1066fsb, 80watt max

    E5405~E5430 harpertown (1333fsb) can run on any Xeon 5000P/X/V chipset based server board and E5405 costs the same with E5310 currently.

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
    if not too late, make sure you order Xeon E5405 Harpertown's instead of E5310 Clovertown.
    E5405 --> quad 2.0G cores, 12M L2 cache, 1333fsb, 80watt max
    E5310 --> quad 1.6G cores, 8M L2 cache, 1066fsb, 80watt max

    E5405~E5430 harpertown (1333fsb) can run on any Xeon 5000P/X/V chipset based server board and E5405 costs the same with E5310 currently.
    Thanks, but that config is over $1k more expensive w/ Dell. They have very good pricing on the 5310s at the moment. I believe they are overstocked and trying to get them out the door.

  30. #30
    Pretty good deal considering it's Dell. Its a shame you can't upgrade to the harpertowns though.

  31. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by HG-Daniel View Post
    Pretty good deal considering it's Dell. Its a shame you can't upgrade to the harpertowns though.
    The server I purchased was more expensive than the original config that I posted. But, it is still a very good price IMO. I feel that I already have more than ample processing power in the server, so I'm not really concerned about not getting the harpertowns.

  32. it's a pity, alright! in retail channels, E5405 is selling the same price with E5310. in fact, for a supermicro based server, you could almost get dual E5462 (quad 2.8G cores, 1600fsb) if you spent $1K more than dual E5405/E5310.

    buyer be aware! the entire clovertown line is being outdated by harpertown series, and harpertown's (start with 2.0Ghz) are priced lower than clovertown's with the same clock speed at this time.....

  33. #33
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    That kind of DELL pricing drives me crazy. We've got 90% DELL, but have managed to negotiate good deals by pricing out Supermicro/Newegg parts and then hitting our rep with it.

    One thing that I would LOVE to see on Supermicros is some kind of Square Hole Rapid Rail setup like DELL has.
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