Dell PowerEdge M1000e review

HP and IBM think they have the blade server market sewn up. Dell says otherwise and in this exclusive review we fire up its latest PowerEdge M1000e in the lab and see how it stacks up.

Price
£2,916

HP may hold the top spot for worldwide blade server sales but Dell aims to offer up some serious competition. In this exclusive review we take a closer look its latest PowerEdge M1000e and also get to see the world's first server blade that supports Intel's new Xeon 6500 and 7500 Nehalem-EX' processors.

Although Dell's previous blade server products were distinctly lacklustre affairs, the M1000e is a different beast altogether and looks quite capable of taking on HP's mighty BladeSystem c7000. The M1000e is its equal for server blade capacity as this 10U chassis can handle up to 16 half-height or eight full-height server blades or a mixture of both.

The M1000e reverses these arrangements so a forced insertion or a mismatch will only damage the blade which is far easier to replace. Dell's server blades are shipped with bright orange protective covers on their male connectors and even these will not damage the mid-plane if accidentally left on during insertion.

The chassis also has an open design with no dividers. This allows it to accept any combination of half-height and full-height blades in any order. The design also fits well with future blade design allowing the chassis to accept double width blades and even quarter height models.

Power options are the equal of HP as Dell offers single-phase and three-phase supplies where the former is facilitated by up to six hot-swap modules located along the base of the chassis at the rear. Intelligent power supply management ensures that the system only uses the minimum necessary and the chassis can turn off supplies that aren't needed.

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