[CentOS] CentOS on the HP MicroServer

Timothy Murphy gayleard at eircom.net
Wed Jul 6 10:19:37 UTC 2011

Devin Reade wrote:

> I was looking at the marketing hype on those machines, and they look
> like they take a standard 3.5" SATA drive.  OTOH, some pictures of
> the HP model drives for the microserver look like there's some type
> of handle on the front.  I'm assuming that this is the "hard disk
> carrier" mentioned in the installation manual.

I think your questions have all been answered,
but I thought I'd add my two cents
that I've been really impressed with this box as a home-server. 
(I have two, in different locations.)

There is no handle on the front of mine.
There is a key to lock the front panel, which it is important not to lose!
Also when you open the front panel, 
there is a handle to pull out the motherboard.
Maybe that is what you saw.
I found it quite awkward to pull out the motherboard,
which you have to do to add memory or any card
(but not to add another SATA driver),
but I am no hardware guru, and usually find this sort of thing hard.
I saw a couple of YouTube videos, where a guy disconnected the connectors
and pulled out the board in about 10 seconds,
but I found each of the 6 connectors quite hard to undo.

I'm surprised how few people seem to be using CentOS (or RHEL)
on this machine, according to the forums I've looked at,
as the only 2 OS's supported are RHEL (5 and 6) and Windows Home Server.
There is a large amount of software support (eg "HP Smart Update Manager")
which seems to be RHEL-oriented (there are some RPMs included).

Most of the discussions on the forums are about adding
as many hard disks as possible (you can put some in the top,
intended for a DVD drive).
I didn't really understand the purpose of this exercise,
as if I wanted a box with 8 drives I wouldn't choose the MicroServer
to start with.

Incidentally, HP's cash-back offer has been extended for another month,
I think, so the box is still absurdly cheap, at about 150 euro.
It's been extended about 4 times.
I don't understand HP's motive, as they must be losing money on this.

Timothy Murphy  
e-mail: gayleard /at/ eircom.net
tel: +353-86-2336090, +353-1-2842366
s-mail: School of Mathematics, Trinity College, Dublin 2, Ireland

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