Dell updates server portfolio with Intel Xeon chips for data centre demands

Dell's 13th generation PowerEdge servers

Dell has overhauled its server line-up with new models based on Intel’s latest Xeon E5-2600 v3 processors. The 13th generation of PowerEdge servers includes features to speed deployment of new systems, as well as models designed to cram as much storage capacity as possible to meet growing data centre requirements.

Available to order now, the first wave of the 13th generation PowerEdge servers comprises the PowerEdge R730xd, R730, and R630 rack-mount systems, M630 blade server, and T630 tower server.

All are based on Intel’s newly unveiled Xeon E5-2600 v3 processors, but Dell has not simply refreshed existing hardware, but looked carefully at emerging customer requirements in the data centre when designing the new systems, according to Dell’s Enterprise Field Marketing Manager for the UK, Stephen Daborn.

“We went back to Dell’s roots in talking to customers and understanding what’s driving their business and requirements for IT, and the big buzzwords we’re hearing are big data, mobility, bring your own device [BYOD], and cloud, but we’re also hearing interest in the software defined data centre coming up rapidly,” Daborn told V3.

To this end, Dell said it is bringing storage closer to the application, offering tiered storage inside some server models using solid state drives (SSDs), while also offering flash in 1.8in drives in other models to cram in as much storage as possible.

“The 1.8in format is much more efficient for SSDs, so prices are coming down and we’re seeing a lot more demand for these in the server to deliver the performance that customers are demanding,” Daborn said.

The tiered storage option is offered in the PowerEdge 730xd, a 2U rack-mount chassis. This is implemented using NVMe Express Flash storage attached directly to the PCI Express bus and Dell’s Fluid Cache for SAN software. The PowerEdge 730xd, is capable of holding up to 100TB of storage internally, according to Dell.

Also of note is the tower format T630, which because of its size can be configured with four GPU adapter cards, making it perfect for virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) deployments, Daborn said.

Meanwhile, Dell is offering automated deployment of new servers through its Zero-Touch Repository Manager, and the ability for IT staff to get status information and configure servers on-the-spot using NFC-enabled mobile devices.

The zero touch deployment makes use of the integrated Dell Remote Access Controller (iDrac) module inside each PowerEdge server, and enables IT staff to simply supply configuration information in an XML format on a USB stick when they boot the server, Daborn said.

“Now we’ve made it so you can just rack the server, plug in, turn on and walk away,” he claimed.

The iDrac also features in iDrac QuickSync, which can collect server health information stored in the iDrac using a smartphone or other NFC-enabled device running Dell’s OpenManage Mobile app. It also allows for basic configuration of servers on the spot.

The new PowerEdge server line-up is available to order from today, with a typical 15-day lead-time for Dell’s build-to order service, the firm said.

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8 September 2014 | 4:48 pm – Source: v3.co.uk

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