by Adam Armstrong

Dell Expands PowerEdge FX Portfolio

Dell Inc. recently introduced three new modules to its PowerEdge FX Portfolio, the FC430, the FD332, and the FC830. These modules were first announced along with the rest of Dell’s next generation converged infrastructure in November. We had a chance to review the Dell PowerEdge FX2 at the time as well. Dell has also announced that its PowerEdge servers are celebrating their 20th anniversary, and are growing at two times the pace of the industry.

Dell currently holds the number 2 spot in the global x86 server market and believes that its gains in worldwide unit share year over year is due in large part to its customers-inspired innovations such as PowerEdge FX. Dell also states that more customers are using PowerEdge FX to revolutionize datacenters. Two example of this are Stack Overflow and Tapad; two companies that have turned to Dell PowerEdge FX architecture to address their needs for flexible IT solutions

Dell in expanding to PowerEdge FX portfolio to include three new modules: the FC430, the FD332, and the FC830. Theses new modules give customers new option and flexibility for their converged infrastructure. Dell claims that with the new modules, customers can host 72% more virtual desktop users in 10 times less space than Cisco UCS.

PowerEdge FC430

The Dell PowerEdge FC430 is a quarter-width, half-height server block with the ability to host applications in smaller, physically discrete servers to minimize the risk of system failures. The FC430 is ideal for mainstream enterprise workloads, distributed environments needing higher levels of reliability (through physical separation, one server can fail without disruption to clients or VMs on other servers), HPC, and high frequency trading. IT can also “react at the speed of business.” One 2U PowerEdge enclosure can house up to 8 FC430s giving it 224 cores and 48 DIMMs of memory for processing.

FC430 specifications:

  • CPU: Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v3 product family
  • Processor sockets: 2
  • Cache: 2.5MB per core; core options: 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14
  • OS:
    • Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, (includes Hyper-V)
    • Microsoft Windows Server 2012
    • Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2 (includes Hyper-V)
    • Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server
    • Red Hat Enterprise Linux
  • Chipset: Intel C610 series
  • Memory: Up to 256GB (8 DIMM slots): 4GB/8GB/16GB/32GB DDR4 up to 2133MT/s
  • Video card:
    • Video type Matrox G200 (integrated with iDRAC8)
    • Video memory: 16MB shared with iDRAC8 application memory
  • Optional supported hypervisors: VMWare vSphere ESXi
  • Storage: Up to 2 x 1.8” SSDs
  • Expansion slots: 1 x PCIe 3.0 (x8)
  • RAID Controllers: Internal controllers: PERC S130 (SW RAID)
  • System management:
    • FX uses Chassis Management Controller (CMC) to manage all resources (server nodes and shared infrastructure) in a single web console
    • OpenManage portfolio for FX supports local and remote management, consistent with other PowerEdge products
    • CMC and iDRAC are available with either Enterprise or Express licensing to best suit specific management needs
    • Server nodes each contain proven iDRAC8 with Lifecycle Controller for agent-free, automated systems management
  • Interface:
    • 2 x LOM options: 2 x 10GbE or 2 x 1GbE
    • NDC options: 2 x 10GbE, 4 x 10GbE, 4 x 1GbE NDC mezzanine cards supported in FX2s chassis configuration: Broadcom 4 x 1GbE, Intel 4 x 1GbE, Mellanox ConnectX-3 2 x 10GbE, Emulex 2 x 10GbE, Broadcom 2 x 10GbE, Intel 2 x 10GbE, Qlogic FC8, Emulex FC8
    • The FC430 has a front-access mezzanine port Mellanox InfiniBand connection
  • Power: 1600W in 1+1 redundant configuration
  • Chassis: Form factor: Quarter-width – supports up to 8 sleds/PowerEdge FX2 chassis
  • Dimensions (HxWxD): 1.58 x 4.04 x 18.89 in (4.03 x 1.03 x 47.98 cm)

PowerEdge FD332

The Dell PowerEdge FD332 is a half-width storage block that enables dense, highly-flexible, scale-out solutions. PowerEdge FX servers can be attached to one or multiple FD332s (3 per chassis), allowing customers to combine servers and storage in a wide variety of configurations to address specific processing needs. It also enables a pay-as-you-grow IT model as more blocks can be added as needed. The combination of compute with direct attached storage through the FD332 makes it a great option for enabling dense virtual SAN clusters.

FD332 specifications:

  • Storage: 16 x Small Form Factor Drives (SSD or HDD, SATA or SAS)
  • RAID Controllers: Internal controllers:
    • FD33xS (single PERC)
    • FD33xD (dual PERC)
  • Remote management:
    • iDRAC8 Express with Lifecycle Controller (default)
    • iDRAC8 Enterprise with Lifecycle Controller (upgrade option)
  • System management:
    • FX uses Chassis Management Controller (CMC) to manage all resources (server nodes and shared infrastructure) in a single web console
    • OpenManage portfolio for FX supports local and remote management, consistent with other PowerEdge products
    • CMC and iDRAC are available with either Enterprise or Express licensing to best suit specific management needs
    • Server nodes each contain proven iDRAC8 with Lifecycle Controller for agent-free, automated systems management
  • Power: 1600W in 1+1 redundant or 2+0 non-redundant configurations
  • Chassis: Form factor: Half-width
  • Dimensions (HxWxD): 1.58 x 8.32 x 20.43 in (40.15 x 211.9 x 518.8 mm)
  • Up to 3 FD332 storage blocks per PowerEdge FX2 chassis (configuration dependent)

PowerEdge FC830

Dell is playing this a little close to the chest, but so far we know that the Dell PowerEdge FC830 is a full-width, half-height 4-socket server block that runs a wide range of database driven, mission critical applications for midsize and large businesses. This server is ideal for large-scale virtualization or the database tier of WebTech and HPC environments. 

FC830 specifications:

  • CPU: 4 next-gen multi-core Intel Xeon
  • Processor sockets: 4
  • Memory: Up to 3TB
  • Storage: Up to 16 x 1.8” drives or 8 x 2.5” drives (supports Express Flash NVMe PCIe SSDs)
  • Expansion slots: 8 x PCIe
  • Interface: Dual-port 10Gb SNA

Availability

The PowerEdge FC430 and FD332 are available now and the FC830 is expected to be available in June 2015.

Dell FX converged architecture components

Update: Our review of the FD332 & the FC830

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