Dell PowerEdge R210 II review

Price when reviewed

Our measurements show the Xeon E3-1280 isn’t the best choice if you’re concerned about power consumption. With Windows Server 2008 R2 idling we measured a draw of 44W, which peaked at 130W with SiSoft Sandra pushing all eight logical cores to the max.

Dell also offers the low-power 2.2GHz Xeon E3-1220L processor, which we saw in action with Broadberry’s CyberServe XE3-RS100. When idle, this otherwise similarly specified low-profile server pulled a mere 24W, rising to only 46W under pressure.

Server management starts with Dell’s embedded baseboard management controller (BMC), which is of limited value. It shares access with the first network port, and can be accessed remotely using Dell’s IPMISH command line utility, but this only lets you control server power.

Dell PowerEdge R210 II

Smaller businesses should consider upgrading to the iDRAC6 Express controller for £56, since it adds a host of useful features. It activates the Lifecycle Controller and its Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) environment, which offers OS deployment wizards, a driver store, diagnostics and server update tools.

The Express controller shares access with the first network port and provides a smart remote web management interface. This can be used to monitor components, issue SNMP trap and email alerts when errors or faults are detected, and remotely control the power supply.

For full KVM over IP remote control and virtual media services, you’ll need the iDRAC6 Enterprise card. This costs an extra £276 and provides a separate network port for dedicated management access.

Dell includes its Management Console 2 software, too, which is designed to manage entire networks and associated equipment. It’s too heavy-duty for SMBs, but it can keep an eye on all SNMP-enabled devices, and provides inventory, system monitoring and alerting facilities.

Dell scores over HP and IBM, as neither vendor has a Xeon E3 rack server this small. The R210 II also packs a lot into its low-profile chassis, including plenty of storage and management options, and is mercifully much quieter than its predecessor. An impressive piece of kit.


Warranty1yr on-site next business day



Server formatRack
Server configuration1U


CPU familyIntel Xeon
CPU nominal frequency3.50GHz
Processors supplied1
CPU socket count1


RAM capacity32GB
Memory typeDDR3


Hard disk configuration2 x 250GB Dell SATA 3Gbits/sec hard disks in cold-swap carriers
Total hard disk capacity500GB
RAID moduleDell PERC S100 RAID
RAID levels supported0, 1, 10


Gigabit LAN ports2

Power supply

Power supply rating250W

Noise and power

Idle power consumption44W
Peak power consumption130W

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