HP Microserver N40L Home Lab Server / ML110 G6/7 Comparision

Chris Wahl had posted a great video preview about the HP Microserver N40L on his blog.
It’s now time for me to update his preview with few informations and I will give a short comparison between the N40L and the ML110 G6/G7.
The N40L is official supported with 8GB Memory, but you can also use 16GB RAM.

I used this memory modules Corsair 8GB DDR3 1333MHz XMS3 CMX8GX3M1A1333C9, but 50% of the times it came up with 8GB and the other 50% it came up with 16GB, so this modules are not 100% compatible.
Here are some other modules which are known to work (untested):
ECC Modules:
Super Talent DDR3-1333 8GB/512Mx8 ECC Samsung Chip Server Memory – W1333EB8GS
Non-ECC Modules:
Corsair 8GB DDR3 1333MHz XMS3 CMX8GX3M1A1333C9
GSkill Ares F3-1333C9D-16GAO
Patriot Gamer2 PGD316G1333ELK

N40L vs. ML110 G6/7

The N40L uses a dual-core AMD Turion 2 CPU with 1.5 GHz and the ML110 G6/G7 uses a more powerful Intel Xeon X3430 (G6) or E3-1220 (G7) Quad-Core CPU. Both CPU don’t have Hyperthreading, but you can use different CPUs in this models, which have Hyperthreading.
The N40L is supported with 8GB and the ML110 is supported with 16GB RAM. Both servers are compatible with 16GB respectively 32GB (only tested 24GB in my G6 with the Corsair 8GB DDR3 1333MHz XMS3 CMX8GX3M1A1333C9 modules).
Both onboard network card are on the Compatibility Guide. Broadcom BCM5723 for the N40L, HP NC107i for G6 and HP NC112i for G7.
RAID Controller
The Microserver got a SB700 embedded SATA RAID Controller (Software/Fake RAID) where only compatible or AHCI mode works with ESXi 4 or 5. Ml110 G6/7 uses a HP B110i SATA Controller, which is also Software/Fake RAID and only compatible or AHCI mode works with ESXi.
If you try to install ESXi 5.x on the ML110 G7 there might be a problem and you get a PSOD (Purple Screen of Death). Read through this article from Erik Bussink, who described and fixed the problem.
I hope this articel will help all of you, who have to make a decision between the MicroServer N40L and ML110 G6/7.

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