Reducing Fan Noise from a Dell PowerEdge R905

Images borrowed from the auction page of red_planet_trading on eBay

If you’re read my blog, you know that I have a quite a few servers in my basement that I use as a home lab environment. For home or low-demand virtualization, you can’t beat the Dell R905 for price. Consider that, as of the time I’m writing this post, you can get an R905 like I did with 128 GB of RAM for about $960. That’s only a little more than the cost of the RAM! That machine has 4x AMD Opteron 8356 quad-core CPUs @ 2.3Ghz and two built-in 10gbps ethernet ports (plus 2 gigabit ports), a PERC6i controller, dual PSUs, and a full enterprise DRAC. It’s a little old, but you can’t get those specs in any other … Continue reading

Quieting Dell PowerEdge 1855/1955 Blade System Chassis Fan Noise: Undocumented DRAC/MC Commands

fan_speed_hex

TL;DR: Skip right to the undocumented commands Background I recently purchased a Dell BMX blade chassis on eBay that came loaded with ten 2x dual-core, 24GB PE1955 blades.   For a system with 40 cores, 240 GB of RAM and two 16-port gigabit switches in a 7U frame, $2500 was too good to pass up.  Especially since shipping cost me a mere 2 hour round-trip to Brooklyn. I didn’t really need ten more servers, so I figured I’d sell off 5 or 6 of them (hopefully breaking even on the entire system — the 4GB FB-DIMMs in 6 of the servers is worth $1450 – $1900 alone).  The remaining servers would be all mine! But I forgot to research the noise!  … Continue reading