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HPE ProLiant DL380 Gen10 review

HPE’s flagship 2U rack server gets a massive Gen10 makeover and showcases Intel’s Xeon Scalable CPUs

Price
£8,521
  • Great value; Xeon Scalable CPUs; Highly expandable; Extensive storage options; Quality iLO 5 management; Strong platform security

HPE's ProLiant DL380 has consistently been at the top of the best seller list - and with good reason, as this is its most capable rack server. There's little it can't turn its hand to and we exclusively bring you the first hands-on review of HPE's new Gen10 flagship.

There's plenty to get excited about as along with support for Intel's Xeon Scalable CPU family, the DL380 Gen10 receives a complete refresh in the storage department with a new modular design. HPE's Smart Array RAID controllers have also been uprated to offer more storage and interface choices.

The server supports 3TB of DDR4 SmartMemory and can handle up to 192GB of HPE's Persistent Memory NVDIMMs. These target high-demand apps such as analytics or databases and provide 8GB of high-performance DRAM, backed up by 8GB of flash mounted on a standard form factor DIMM module.

And then there's HPE's new iLO 5 management controller. It offers a heap of new features as along with improved server monitoring, it has a laser-sharp focus on platform security with silicon fingerprinting, encryption and breach detection technology.

 

Storage

On review is the Performance model 826556-B21 which sports a pair of 12-core 2.3GHz Intel Xeon Gold 5118 CPUs teamed up with 64GB of DDR4. A quick glance at the front shows HPE has retained the 8+8+8 drive bay configuration layout, allowing up to 24 SFF drives to be presented.

You can fit HPE's universal media unit in the left bay, which provides dual USB3, a DisplayPort plus optical drive and room for two SFF drives beneath. There's more going on at the back: three dual SFF hot-swap cages can be added, taking the tally to thirty drives.

The SFF chassis also supports up to 20 NVMe drives. If capacity is a key requirement, it'll take twelve LFF drives at the front, three at the back and even four in the middle with HPE's custom mid-plane kit.

All models start with HPE's embedded Smart Array S100i chip, which supports RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10 for up to 14 SATA drives. Our server has the Smart Array P408i-a snap-in module which adds SAS3 plus 2GB of flash-protected cache to the storage equation and HPE offers other models with differing cache quantities and external expansion ports.

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