Dude, we're getting some Dells...

We're trying to upgrade to a load balanced, fully redundant web serving platform now. What we currently have was a $3000 server about 30 months ago, so it's time to look at upgrades. I don't usually like Dell, but their prices are something else. As we're getting ready to upgrade our servers, I happened across Dell's website and checked what they had for a deal at the moment. We ended up getting a few at stupid prices - stupid meaning very low for what we're getting.

Base Model

The base model on these machines is a 1U rackmount 2.8GHz/2MB Cache Xeon with 1GB RAM, 2 x GB ethernet ports and an 80GB HDD. Nothing too impressive.

Free Upgrade

To start making it seem a little nicer, they offered a FREE second processor.


We added in 7GB more RAM, another drive (mirroring is a good thing) and a few other odds and ends including the 3 year service plan. Since it's Dell, we'll probably need that. ;-)

Price Reduction

Since it was over $2700, Dell took off $600. Some other promotion they're running.

Switches as Well

Since we're going to do load balancing and clustering, we also wanted to upgrade switches. They had some price reductions there as well, making for $204 16 port managed gigabit switches. For that price, I picked up 2 (redundancy again).


Ok, so for under $2400 we have a Dual 2.8 Xeon with 8GB RAM and mirrored 80GB drives covered under the 3 year service plan. But, since we're working on failsafes with this upgrade, I got to order 3 of these. This way, when one fails we still have redundancy while we're trying to get the down server back up and running. (I say when and not if because it's Dell.)


I know that this isn't a whole lot of server (compared to what I'll be blogging about next), but for the price it's hard to beat. Besides, these servers are only intended to run Apache and some Perl scripts, which just requires some RAM and an OK processor. The real load is always on our database, and those servers will be in my next post.


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