Fujitsu Server Primergy RX2540 M4 review

The RX2540 M4 delivers a great rack server package for the price and an impressive upgrade path

Price
£4,390
  • Excellent configuration options; High expansion potential; Slick internal design
  • Embedded Intel RAID chip only supports striped and mirrored arrays for 8 SATA drives; ServerView management software is in need of updating

Fujitsu's Server Primergy RX2540 M4 is ideal for SMBs that have future expansion and high growth on their minds. Along with support for every Xeon Scalable CPU model up to 205W TDP, this 2U rack server can be expanded to a massive 3TB of DDR4 memory, offers up to eight PCI-Express slots and has room for 28 SFF drives.

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Our review system costs 4,390 and delivers a good specification to get you out the starting blocks. This includes a 10-core 2.2GHz Xeon Silver 4114 with room for a second CPU, 16GB of DDR4 memory and an 800W hot-plug PSU while its PRAID EP420i controller card brings SAS3 support and RAID5 and 6 arrays into the storage equation.

The server starts with an 8-bay SFF drive cage, to which two more can be added at the front and connected via SAS expanders or an extra RAID card. The full drive tally is realised by adding an optional 4-bay cage at the rear and Fujitsu is releasing a special order liquid-cooling kit allowing this particular specification to support the high-end 28-core Xeon Platinum 8180 CPU.

SMBs with tighter budgets can start small; an entry system with an 8-core 2.1GHz Xeon Silver 4110, 16GB of DDR4, an EP400i RAID card, eight SFF drive bays and a 450W PSU has an RRP of 2,216 ex VAT. The server also supports up to 12 LFF drive bays but the embedded Intel RAID chip only offers striped and mirrored arrays for eight SATA drives.

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Cracking the lid reveals a beautifully designed interior with all components easily accessible for routine maintenance and upgrades. Cooling is handled efficiently by a bank of three hot-plug modules each containing two fans while the dual CPU sockets and 24 memory slots are covered by a solid transparent air shroud.

The RX2540 M4 offers a lot of expansion options with six embedded PCI-Express slots that can be increased to eight using optional riser modules. These will also be required if you want to fit up to two Nvidia Quadro or Tesla GPGPU cards which reduce CPU support to models with a maximum 150W TDP.

The base server comes with dual Gigabit network ports and the price we've shown includes Fujitsu's quad-Gigabit DynamicLOM adapter card. This snaps into a proprietary slot on the motherboard, and other models are available with dual Gigabit, dual copper 10GbE and dual or quad fibre 10GbE ports.

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Power choices are plentiful as along with the 800W Platinum PSU in our server, you have a spare bay for a second redundant supply and Fujitsu also offers 450W, 1200W and 1300W Platinum or Titanium variants. Overall power consumption for our system was good with it drawing 70W in idle and peaking at only 135W with the Xeon Silver under a 100 percent load.

Fujitsu's ServerView systems management software suite is still looking in need of a major update but the server shows off Fujitsu's new iRMC S5 controller. Its freshly-designed web console offers tighter access security and makes all critical system information much more accessible than its predecessor.

It provides a complete breakdown of power consumption for key components plus detailed event logs and alerting facilities. The price we've shown includes the iRMC advanced license which activates video redirection for full OS remote control, virtual media services and video capture.

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The Primergy RX2540 M4 is an ideal choice for fast growing SMEs that want a Xeon Scalable server that can handle all their current and future demands. Remote management features are average, but this rack server offers a good hardware package for the price and a truly remarkable expansion potential.

Verdict

The Fujitsu Server Primergy RX2540 M4 is an ideal choice for fast growing SMEs that want a Xeon Scalable server that can handle all their current and future demands. Remote management features are average, but this rack server offers a good hardware package for the price and a truly remarkable expansion potential.

2U rack chassis 1 x 2.2GHz Intel Xeon Silver 4114 (max 2) 16GB DDR4 RDIMM (max 3TB) Intel C624 Fujitsu PRAID CP420i SAS3/2GB cache/BBU Supports RAID0, 1, 1E, 10, 5, 50, 6, 60 3 x 300GB SAS3 SFF hard disks (max 28) 2 x Gigabit; 4 x Gigabit DynamicLOM card 6 x PCI-E 3.0 (max 8 with risers) 1 x 800W hot-plug PSU (max 2) Fujitsu iRMC S5 Advanced with Gigabit 3 years on-site NBD warranty Power 70W idle, 135W peak

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