What would you do with an HP MicroServer Gen8?

As we produce more and more data, it's not uncommon for families and small businesses to want to centralize it for easy access. While tools like Dropbox can be helpful, access times are slower than using a server in your own home and the question of data security comes up as well, especially in the light of questions around PRISM and other similar programs.

That's why we're intrigued by HP's latest MicroServer offering, the HP ProLiant MicroServer Gen8. It's really tiny, very affordable, and packed with lots of enterprise features. For example, the box includes "Integrated Lights Out," or iLO, which allows you to remotely manage the server, mount virtual media, and even power the machine on and off directly from a web browser. While the machine would make a great file/print server for a small office, we think it might also make a wonderful home server or perhaps a machine that can used in a small lab to test out new software offerings.

We'll have answers to a lot of these questions in the near future as HP has agreed to partner with Neowin by giving us one to review. We're looking forward to putting it in our lab and running it through various tests. We'll be sure to share all of the details we find, and if there's anything in particular that you're interested in, let us know and we'll try to put it on the test plan.

The even better news? Once we're done testing the HP ProLiant MicroServer Gen8, we'll be able to give it away to one of our lucky readers! We did this a couple of years ago after we returned from HP Discover, so we're excited to be able to give you another cool prize, since our readers are the reason we're here.

So let us know what you'd like to do with a ProLiant MicroServer Gen8 and keep reading the front page over the next few weeks when we announce the details of the giveaway

Image via HP

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I would absolutely loooovvvveee one of these bad boys! I could replace my tower server with this thing and truly make my network rock. Any news about the giveaway yet? I'm itching to sign up badly! I need this bad boy!

Obi-Wan Kenobi said,
I would absolutely loooovvvveee one of these bad boys! I could replace my tower server with this thing and truly make my network rock. Any news about the giveaway yet? I'm itching to sign up badly! I need this bad boy!

Not yet, but news will be coming in the next few weeks.

I already have a Gen 7 Microserver, use it to store all my media and run a VPN Server, it also runs a Minecraft server and Teamspeak server for my mates and I.
I'd use a Gen 8 for that and more...the 7 does struggle a bit with all that.

Replace my current Microserver as this allows 16GB of ram instead of 8GB. Sticking with my current setup I'd install Windows 8 with Hyper-V enabled. Then I'd put in a graphics card, hook it up to my TV and use it as a media center as well as swapping the default drive for a Blu-Ray drive. I'd also put some VM's on it that I use for development and testing in my spare time. Put 5 x hard drives in it in a RAID array that I use to store my photos/software/backups etc. Add a USB bluetooth adapter to it to sync files to/from my mobile phone. Setup a VM for remote access and configure my home firewall to route into it, using Remote Apps.

Think that's about it !

install esxi on it, put some vm's on it to host some flex and unity projects. and move my subsonic from a dying pc to a vm on this one.

file server, dnsd (authoritative and caching), proxy (for non-transparent filtering), httpd, sftp

to replace my VIA Esther 1.5GHz single core, 512mb ram, 2x 1TB server.

Although i have some crazy hardware ideas for such a small server , this one i could very well use it as a demonstration entry level server for many Small Business (with a virtualization of a typical infrastructure: firewall, servers and storage) with a thigh budget; my concern is the fact that this server comes with a weak processor (that doesn't support VT-D or Hyper Threading) but on the plus side it's small enough to keep it in a car and to show it to Small Business Administrations something affordable and capable (considering that it doesn't come with disks, adding those and more memory can push this baby to 1k or more in the end).

Also i should mention that while it comes with iLO, to fully use it one must buy a license and those don't come cheap

I would replace the server I use to host my junior high library blog, CMS and resource storage. I might even move some the other teacher's blog to it so that they could be accessed without the delay caused by an old hand-me-down crap server the district has provided us to use.

Using my N36L as a synology box, don't see the power consumption on the Gen 8 as a motivating factor to upgrade, as the N36L has enough grunt already.

I'd use it as a storage device to serve up media to my media devices. I think that this device looks small enough to sit under a desk and not be too loud.

I would use it as a website and web application server to test (and eventually serve to prospective clients) some startup product ideas I've been working on over the last couple years, with a 1 Gb Google Fiber connection (which is to be installed by the end of the month).

I'd need to rent a dedicated server to fully implement these ideas (yet still wouldn't have the needed bandwidth), or seriously upgrade my current home server which is just an old desktop.

(I'm not sure if bribes are allowed, but just incase they are, I'd give everyone behind the scenes at Neowin (including mods) access to some pretty cool music and video services I've cooked up that are part of the testbed. If they're not allowed, then just ignore this, but ask me afterwards via pm... Shshh )

Edited by thomastmc, Sep 15 2013, 4:48am :

I would use it to host all of my children's pictures and video. In 10 or 15 years they could replicate the data to their houses and watch all of the memories all over again.

I would rub it and pet it and squeeze it and rub it. I will stroke it's bill and rub it's pretty feathers... Hey, wait a minute! HP Microservers don't have feathers and bills...

I would use it as both a nas and a home media server to free up some much needed space on my current machine. This would suit my needs in way more than one way. I could serve my media all over the house. It would be a dream come true for sure!

Use it as a NAS for my backups so I could use my existing one for my web servers which I backup nightly, and during it's 'non-use' time when I am not using it, install BOINC on it so I can help fight diseases and other pertinent issues using the computing power to help crunch complex calculations.

Simple: install freeNAS, the Plex Media Server plugin and move all my media to it. Would probably schedule regular backups of my personal stuff too!

GreyWolf said,
I'd stick OpenSim on it but I don't think I'm eligible.

Never heard of OpenSim, but just looked it up - sounds cool!

Back all my photos and videos up to it because my kids keep managing to find my external HDDs and they're going to break them soon! This I'd just connect and put in an out of the way place so they can't touch.

Same purpose as my current HP Microserver. 12Tb of storage, tv shows and movies shared to my WD Live tv and my neighbors access it over wifi to watch stuff too.

The IT related charity I volunteer for needs a new server, for file storage and the ability to run automatic data backups, this would be perfect for those needs

I'd run a doubtful website on it, copying all Neowin news messages and comments, with custom Google ads... and I would name it Weonin.

Could do quite a bit with this little gem. Best to virtualize and then take care of the smaller tasks like hosting files, testing new releases, maybe host a game server or two.

Backups for my primary OS; File share for my music and videos. I'd probably install FreeNAS - I use it now for backups and sharing, as well as sFTP.

I'm going to use it as a central file server and also install Hyper-V, I have so many things I would like to test away, since I just finished my network admin class.

Any clue what the usage of these machines is? Considering power costs about €1.80 per Watt per year here in the Netherlands, a mere 100W machine will cost you a fortune!

This can be used in surprisingly many small offices too!!!

Esp for simple needs like just a DC or 1 Role server (Print)

So many for ESXi. Personally, I'd install Hyper-V and use at home if I didn't already have a good server. Since I do, I suppose I'd sell it.

Xenosion said,
So many for ESXi. Personally, I'd install Hyper-V and use at home if I didn't already have a good server. Since I do, I suppose I'd sell it.

I've never used Hyper-V, so I'm hoping to play with it in my lab.

Gotenks98 said,
It would kind of help if we had the specs of said server then we could decide on if we really wanted it or not.

If you follow the link in the article, it takes you to HP's site showing you the specs. I don't know how HP will spec it out (2GB or 16GB, for example), but the basics are all the same and adding your own memory is relatively cheap.

Another ESXi installation for me I suspect. I'm a VMware VCP professionally but my home lab is virtually non-existant.. a MicroServer would be a great to run various small servers at home and help do some testing

Replace my first generation N36L ESX host!
I use two Microservers in a cluster currently to play with. They host a FreeNAS VM each to present storage to each host. Would be great if I could use the N36L as a dedicated storage array.

Most likely ESXi, have that replace a couple of my aging BSD Unix servers, coincidentally two of which are a first generation ProLiant. (In this case, less aging, more prehistoric.)

Much the same as everyone else. ESX environment managing a MDM Server, SCCM (Absolute Manage), pfSense firewall, domain controller etc.

Would be much better than the HP MicroServer N40L it's currently running on.

What are we going to do with the G8 microserver brain?
The same thing we do with every microserver pinky....try to take over the world!

I'd make it my home file storage server with other custom services that I need. Currently running an older Core 2 Duo computer as server which uses 64W of power, which is an overkill for such simple things... That's a really nice box for that

Come on after all the discussion of these little beasts on the forums....... Run ESXi on it of course. Pfsense,FreeNAS,Torrent,Windows Home Server,Tor Exit Node etc etc.

ChuckFinley said,
Come on after all the discussion of these little beasts on the forums....... Run ESXi on it of course. Pfsense,FreeNAS,Torrent,Windows Home Server,Tor Exit Node etc etc.

plus maybe run Folding@home and seti@home, since the machine is running 24/7.

ChuckFinley said,
Come on after all the discussion of these little beasts on the forums....... Run ESXi on it of course. Pfsense,FreeNAS,Torrent,Windows Home Server,Tor Exit Node etc etc.

Sounds like a good plan to me.