Third-party drives not permitted on Gen 11 servers
stroller at stellar.eclipse.co.uk
Sat Feb 6 07:26:28 CST 2010
On 5 Feb 2010, at 22:31, Philip Tait wrote:
> I just received my first Gen11 server, R710, with H700 PERC. I removed
> the supplied drives, and installed 4 Barracuda ES.2s. After doing a
> "Clear Configuration" in the pre-boot RAID setup utility, I can
> no operation with the drives - they are marked as "blocked".
> Is Dell preventing the use of 3rd-party HDDs now?
Thanks for posting this. That Dell are doing this seemed to be hinted
at in another post a couple of days ago, and I wasn't sure if I was
reading right. Out of concern that I might be miscomprehending I
really wanted to do some homework before kicking up a fuss.
I have to say I'm gob-smacked to read this confirmed.
£79 ($123) for a 250GB SATA hard-drive is, these days, a little
pricey. We can get those for £25 anywhere else, but we tolerated the
mark-up when we ordered recently because Dell have always been good
value to us otherwise - let them have their cream. We bought a handful
of these small drives because we figured they'd include the caddies.
Those are worth £25 or so to us (that's what we paid for secondhand
caddies for a 4 year old server last month), so we bought a good
number of low capacity drives to include those, expecting to upgrade
the drives themselves in a year or two.
Markups on larger drives are taking the piss, however. £220 for 1TB -
£53 elsewhere, £740 for 2TB drives that are £100 from the local
warehouse! And the commodity drives have longer warranties! Dell give
only 1 year as standard, AND THE PRICE ISN'T EVEN THE POINT! The point
is the lock-in - if you sell us something that takes SATA hard-drives,
I expect ANY standard SATA hard-drive to run in it. Why wouldn't it?
I have to say I'm a bit gob-smacked by this. Half of me wants to
refuse to accept Dell's delivery on Monday, half of me figures this
ain't such a big deal; we'll tolerate the limitation on this machine &
maybe it'll all blow over. I'm just completely WTF!?!? over this, I'm
at a loss how to respond. We certainly won't buy another machine from
Dell whilst they carry this policy.
I just find it completely stunning that Dell, without some kind of a
warning, would sell me a "SATA" computer that doesn't accept standard
I've spent years defending Dell. I encounter people who assume from
the price that Dells are low-quality mass-produced crap, and I correct
them. When someone has (rarely) told me a horror story of shitty
customer service from Dell, then I have replied that every
manufacturer has some dissatisfied customers; that might not reassure
the recipient of bad service, but I discourage other people I meet
from taking these anecdotes at face value, and contrast with the great
customer service I have always experienced from Dell. I cannot count
the number of computers Dell have sold on my recommendation.
In the last fortnight I have dropped a software product (for Windows)
that I have deployed at hundreds of sites. It's no longer part of new
installs, it's being removed & replaced on systems as they come in for
service. Other people I meet tell me they're dropping the same
software now, too. I guess I saw this coming 18 - 24 months ago, when
I was cussing the vendor for a new "feature", and asking out loud
"what did they do _this_ for?". I was cussing them a year ago, and
within the last 6 months the bugs in their software have *really* been
taking the mickey. This really feels like Dell going the same way. I
drafted a rant about that vendor in (I see from my notes) June 2008,
and never quite got around to polishing it and blogging it. Hopefully,
since I've found the time on this quiet Saturday morning to complete
this email, someone at Dell will bother to read it.
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