HP ProLiant DL360 G7 review

24 Sep 2010

HP's new seventh-generation DL360 has classy build quality, and its server monitoring and power management features are unbeatable

Price when reviewed: 
3,826exc VAT
5

In an effort to reduce costs, many businesses are turning to consolidation, where each new server is expected to take the place of multiple systems and be able handle all their workloads. This is a key area of interest for HP, and its latest ProLiant DL360 G7 aims to offer top performance in a small footprint, so you can make some big savings in rack space and running costs.

Energy efficiency is a top priority, and HP's latest management tools offer some of the best power controls currently available. For starters, you have its new iLO3 embedded controller and the optional advanced upgrade activates the Power Meter feature, which provides real-time and historical graphs of consumption in Watts or BTU/hr.

You also get power regulation and capping controls in the iLO3 interface. The low power mode throttles back the CPU to its lowest power state, while the high performance mode throws all energy savings to the wind. The dynamic power-saving mode sets lower or higher p-states based on utilisation, while capping sets an absolute limit on power usage.

HP's seventh generation of servers introduces its "sea of sensors" concept. Up to 32 embedded sensors on the motherboard keep a close eye on thermal activity and will automatically adjust the fans and processors to keep a balance between temperature and performance.

HP ProLiant DL360 G7

HP's Insight Control software has an optional Power Manager plugin that monitors and controls power consumption and thermal output. You can apply settings such as capping from the Insight console and display graphs showing power usage, CPU performance and exhaust temperatures over hours, days or weeks.

The server sees some welcome improvements over the sixth-generation DL360, as HP has given it four embedded Gigabit ports to bring it in line with the competition. To free up some space at the back for these extra ports, it's removed the PS/2 mouse and keyboard ports.

Internally, HP has redesigned the recalcitrant air shroud from the G6 version, making it more solid and much easier to remove and replace. In single-processor models, cooling is handled by three hot-plug modules, each with a pair of dual-rotor fans.

The second processor kit comes with a fourth cooling fan module that plugs in directly behind it. HP's thermal sensors worked well during testing: we could hear the fan speeds constantly being adjusted, and operational noise levels were incredibly low.

Details

Price ex VAT £3,256

Warranty

Warranty 3yr on-site next business day

Ratings

Overall rating 5
Performance 5
Features & Design 5
Value for Money 5

Physical

Server format Rack
Server configuration 1U

Processor

CPU family Intel Xeon
CPU nominal frequency 2.67GHz
Processors supplied 1

Memory

Memory type DDR3

Storage

Hard disk configuration 3 x 146GB HP SAS SFF 15K hard disks in hot-swap carriers
Total hard disk capacity 438
RAID module HP embedded Smart Array P410i with 256MB cache
RAID levels supported 0, 1, 10, 5

Networking

Gigabit LAN ports 4

Power supply

Power supply rating 460W

Noise and power

Idle power consumption 80W
Peak power consumption 148W