Dell EMC PowerEdge Rack Servers Review

Enables us to virtualize applications and user desktops


What is our primary use case?

We use the Dell EMC R730 Rack Server. We use it for virtualization and we have some servers and some desktop virtual machines running on it. We mostly use it for testing purposes. We also use the Dell EMC PowerEdge Rack Server to do QA testing for those applications. We create temporary virtual machines for this.

Virtualization is one of our main use cases. Hosting web applications is another. We also use the Dell server for standard architecture like Microsoft Excel and Office applications,

How has it helped my organization?

We use Dell EMC PowerEdge R730 as a server for testing our software products. We had not benchmarked anything before we purchased this, but we went through the specs during that time and did some configuration. We purchased Dell EMC PowerEdge R730 with 256GB RAM and built-in dual CPUs. We just sought this configuration from the local Dell EMC account via our account manager.

Since we use this for testing our products, we do not use it for any business process requirements. We are not hosting on it, we are just using it for testing purposes. 

We were not able to scale up the server to the number of reels that we were looking for, so our plan got stalled there. Now we are once again revisiting our plan for that after two years.

There are better processors available with multiple cores than the Dell EMC PowerEdge. Our current requirement is that we should be able to generate a load of five hundred or one thousand Windows 10 desktop VMs on a single server. We prefer to use an optimal sizing on the RAM, the storage disc, and the CPUs. That's our current requirement. Virtualization is the biggest benefit for our organization. 

We are able to virtualize a lot of applications and user desktops with the Dell EMC PowerEdge Rack Server.

What is most valuable?

The main criteria I look for in all vendors are:

  1. On-site service for the hardware. 
  2. The warranty period, i.e. how long the warranty is. 
  3. The ability of the product itself, i.e. the specs and the lifecycle of the product.
  4. The hardware should be cutting edge.

I would like to see the lifecycle at seven to ten years. I want to work on the latest CPUs as much as possible, i.e. maintaining cutting edge standards, but still optimally priced.

We needed a benchmarking HP server, but since we are a small company, we went to hardware resellers. Dell EMC had some programs for SMBs and we were able to have direct interaction with them in India. We were able to get a very reasonable price for the same product which otherwise through the reseller network was extremely costly.

We found that arrangement from Dell EMC to be slightly better than compared to other vendors and why we did not choose them.

What needs improvement?

I would like to see better IOPS, i.e. the disc speed. That is the main limitation for scaling up the number of users.

Nowadays, there are web servers that have greater endurance in the lifecycle than the Dell EMC PowerEdge, so that's what I would like to see improved most.

If Dell EMC can provide us with more IOPS, a higher disc size using the SSDs, and better battery endurance in terms of the lifecycle, i.e. three to seven years, I would be satisfied. With the Dell EMC PowerEdge Server, there is a limitation on the hardware life cycles.

Another place Dell EMC could improve is with GPUs. If we can get more benchmarking done, some optimization, and more scalability for certain apps, it would be better. 

Dell EMC could improve the sizing and scaling performance that we can get with the server, including some better optimization that we can scale up. Another need for improvement is to consider the implementation of other forms of desktop virtualization.

For how long have I used the solution?

One to three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is quite stable. We didn't have a single downtime of failure. Nor have we ever experienced any downtime in electrical components or the hardware. In this way, the server is reliable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The Dell EMC PowerEdge Rack Server did not scale to our expectations.

How are customer service and technical support?

I do not recall if we needed to use Dell EMC technical support often. We did when we wanted to expand the memory and it was satisfactory.

How was the initial setup?

We were already familiar with the hardware so it was straightforward to set up the web server for our requirements.

What other advice do I have?

I would rate the Dell EMC PowerEdge Rack Servers an eight out of ten. It was satisfactory, but we were not able to scale it to the level that we expected.

Maybe we should have contacted their support or put in greater effort to find out about sizing guidelines, or maybe there is a limitation regarding the kind of scale that we are looking for.

I would advise someone considering this solution to search for the use case that is the closest match to your business. We should have referred to that before making a purchase.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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