Server & storage purchasing – what’s your take?

The current economic climate has many small businesses scaling back and prioritizing need-to-haves and can-do-withouts over wants and nice-to-haves.

So when it comes to purchasing decisions with your infrastructure, we’d love to know –

  • How are you reducing cost or spending wisely around your server and/or storage purchases?
  • How can we at LenovoPRO help you in your purchasing journey?
  • What would you recommend to other small businesses based on your experience?

Please share with us and the community below! 

  • To answer the "What primary business need is driving your server and/or storage purchase today?" question, I would have to say age of equipment a lot of existing system are at end of life, which is driving replacement.

  • Mainly storage and confidential  information security 

    Thé only reliable one i know is  microsoft

    I welcome advices if another one reliable Slight smile

  • In the past year, I needed to replace a server we used for backing up all of our MS365 files. It wasn't easy knowing what hardware would be most cost-efficient.

  • I like the mini servers. With mini-servers, you can reduce costs while still getting the features and performance of traditional servers. Based on my experience, I recommend mini-servers as a cost-effective solution for small businesses. With mini-servers you get all the features of traditional servers at a fraction of the cost. Furthermore, mini-servers take up less physical space and are easier to manage. As a result, mini-servers are a great way to reduce costs while still getting the reliable server performance. 

  • I would say a variety of factors including cost performance ratio

  • I just ordered a new Lenovo server a week ago. I am replacing an aging 7-year-old Lenovo server. We only have one physical server at each of our main offices. All the other servers are virtual servers and depending on the office size, we have anywhere from 2 to 5 VM (Virtual Machine) servers. Since our servers are our critical infrastructure for each location, we try to replace them before they fail. We replaced our server in Phoenix in 2021 and originally I was planning on replacing our Tucson server in 2022 but due to budget reasons, I pushed it to this year.

    For our two main offices, we run Microsoft 2022 Server with Hyper-V with a mix of 2019 and 2022 Windows Server as VMs. Each site has a Domain Controller(DC) VM with Active Directory, DNS, and DHCP; File and Print server; Application server; Deployment server running WDS(Windows Deployment Services) and MDT (Microsoft Deployment Toolkit). One office has a Certificate server and in our smaller office, we only have DC and File and Print VMs.

    We have moved most of our files to Office 365 so our file storage has been reduced. The server I choose and configured was a ThinkSystem SR635 1U Rack Server. The specs are:

    • 1 x ThinkSystem SR635 10x2.5" Chassis     - Lenovo offers different configs for 3.5" drives and 2.5" drives
    • 1 x ThinkSystem AMD EPYC 7302 16C 155W 3.0GHz Processor     - 16 cores and plenty of horsepower for what I'm doing
    • 4 x ThinkSystem 16GB TruDDR4 3200MHz (2Rx8 1.2V) RDIMM-A     - 64GB total but this server has 12 more slots if I ever need more.
    • 1 x ThinkSystem 1U 10x2.5" PCIe Gen4 AnyBay Backplane     - The Lenovo AnyBay supports SAS, SATA, U.2 or U.3 drives to be plugged in. U.2 & U.3 are enterprise NVMe SSD.
    • 1 x ThinkSystem 2.5" NVMe 4-Bay Middle Backplane     - Space for 4 additional 2.5" U.2 or U.3 drives.
    • 1 x ThinkSystem RAID 940-16i 4GB Flash PCIe Gen4 12Gb Adapter
    • 2 x ThinkSystem 2.5" U.3 7450 PRO 1.92TB Read Intensive NVMe PCIe 4.0 x4 HS SSD     - pricey and fast enterprise-class NVMe SSD
    • 1 x Lenovo XClarity Pro, Per Managed Endpoint w/3 Yr SW S&S
    • 1 x ThinkSystem Mellanox ConnectX-6 Lx 10/25GbE SFP28 2-Port OCP Ethernet Adapter     - Great fiber Ethernet adapter for the price, this has two ports and supports up to 25GbE
    • 2 x ThinkSystem 1100W (230V/115V) Platinum Hot-Swap Power Supply     - Small upgrade price to provide insurance in case a power supply fails, with two you have a built-in backup

    I spoke to my Lenovo sales rep and he had one of the sales reps from Lenovo Infrastructure Solutions Group review my order before I submitted it. He suggest a minor change in the processor and then he tossed a few free upgrades for me. (upgraded RAID controller, two PCI brackets, and Xclarity Pro) Yay!

    I'm excited, I still have a few weeks to wait before I receive it.

  • My only disappointment with ordering a new server was to find out that Lenovo Rewards don't apply for those orders. I cannot use points or gain points.

  • I think the primary concern for making a server/storage purchase would be backing up my data and keeping everything internally secure. So kind of a combination of concerns/needs as listed.

    For consideration, reliability by far outstrips the other options, though many of the choices are important when making the choice.

  • I have always tried to avoid buying things that I do not need, so the economy does not change that. If I need more external storage then i have to buy it, regardless of the price.

  • I agree. This is a good way to measure it. With the choices above, many will be torn between choosing price or performance. When in reality, the metric you mentioned is likely the more accurate reason behind the motive of a leadership decision in this area.