The Ultimate Dell PowerEdge R740xd Server vs. the Dell PowerEdge R730xd Server Comparison Guide

Dell Servers

Dell’s PowerEdge Rack Servers have proven themselves capable of providing both small and large businesses with the power and versatility needed to support mission-critical applications. The Dell PowerEdge R730xd Server was a significant step up from the Dell PowerEdge R720xd Server, featuring expandable memory of up to 3TB. It could handle heavy workloads for e-commerce businesses, data warehouses, and other data-heavy environments.

Pushing for Continued Innovation

Even as they introduced the powerful R730xd Server in 2014, Dell was hard at work on its next version, the Dell PowerEdge R740xd Server. It made a big splash release, featuring even more processing power capable of ensuring peak performance for vital business applications. The Dell R740xd Server also introduced new technology designed to deliver faster execution of server operations.

Are the improvements in the Dell PowerEdge R740xd server worth upgrading to for businesses who may already own the Dell PowerEdge R730xd Server? Should firms in the market for a new server invest in the newer R740xd, or can they look to the R730xd for delivery of the service needed to support more modern technology continually introduced into the market?

The PowerEdge R730xd was and still is a quality server, but we’re very impressed by how Dell continues to find new ways to improve and expand this line in exciting ways. Let’s look at the capabilities of both servers, and you can decide for yourself what would be best for your business’s current and future prospects.

Processor Performance

The processors within the PowerEdge R730xd and PowerEdge R740xd both provide 46-bit physical and 48-bit virtual addressing. Both contain two sockets for Intel Xeon processors.

The R730xd is compatible with the E5-2600 v4 Xeon CPU’s with DDR4 memory. It’s capable of handling up to 18 cores per processor, with each core capable of supporting two threads. That allows the R730xd to run applications needed for complicated scientific calculations, web-intensive processes, and critical infrastructure support. Businesses can also accelerate their workloads as needed using custom accelerators and GPU configurations.

Additional Dell PowerEdge R730xd Server Processor Features
· Supports CPU Turbo Mode

· 1GB Large Page Support

· Up to 2.5MB last level cache (LLC) per core, for up to 35 shared MB

· Virtualization Support using Intel VT-x and VT-d Technology

Additional Dell PowerEdge R740xd Server Processor Features
· 64 KB First Level Cache (FLC)

· 1 MB of Mid-Level Caching (MLC) per core (outside of LLC)

· Intel® Advanced Vector Extensions 512

The R740xd takes things up another level by supporting up to 24 NVMe drives to help businesses scale up to meet performance demands. The Intel Xeon scalable processors feature improved Instructions Per Cycle (IPC) performance and the ability to handle up to 28 cores each. The Dell R740xd Server also contains internal M.2 SSDs optimized to boot for freeing up any needed storage space.

The Intel Xeon Scalable Processor Advantage

The R740xd gives companies striving to meet the current and future demands of today’s technology a significant advantage over the R730xd by using Intel Xeon scalable processors. They provide you with more CTU bandwidth at 10.4 GT/s versus the 9.6 GT/s on the E5-2600 v4 or other prior Xeon product lines. They also provide up to 65% lower TCO due to reduced OS and software licensing fees along with maintenance, acquisition, and infrastructure costs.

Additional Intel Xeon Scalable Processor Benefits
· Five times faster enterprise IT performance for 4-socket HammerDB OTLP database

· Can handle up to 4.2 more virtual machines than previous processor lines

· Six memory channels versus four

· Twice as many flops per cycle versus previous product lines for better performance from computational tasks

· Gives you near-zero encryption overhead for better performance on secure transactions

Chipset and Memory
The Dell R730xd uses the Intel C610 chipset, upgraded to the C620 for the Dell R740xd. The R730xd supports expandable memory of up to 1.5TB, while the R740xd goes up to 3TB. Both contain 24 DDR4 DIMM slots that support both RDIMM and LRDIMM. The DIMM configuration and choice of installation makes it capable of handling the following speeds:

· 2666MT/s (R740xd only)

· 2133MT/s

· 1600MT/s

· 1333MT/s

· 1066MT/s

· 800MT/s

The system processors can support up to 12 DIMMs each. Each one contains four memory channels with the ability to handle up to three DIMMs.

The storage expandability in both the R730xd and the R740xd lets you adapt each server to your workload and operation demands. Both offer you different choices of internal and external storage controllers, chassis, drive types, and backplanes for different numbers of drives.

Each server also provides you with Express Flash PCIe SSDs and DAS Cache and drives which use PCIe lanes for direct connections to the chipset and processor. Both are easily accessible from a hot plug drive bay.

Additional Storage Features:
· PowerEdge RAID Controllers (PERC)

· Persisted Internal Storage

· Internal Dual SD Module (IDSDM)

· External Backup Tape Drive Support on the R740xd

The R740xd differentiates itself by combining the IDSDM and vFlash card into a single unit. It also offers a Boot Optimized Storage System (BOSS). That allows the server to get to full O/S mode under the following circumstances:

· When the target OS is a full OS, not a hypervisor, that’s best supported by the IDSDM

· When the user doesn’t want to trade off any standard hot-plug drive slots for an OS install

Networking and PCIe
Both the R730xd and the R740xd gives businesses the advantage of providing balanced, scalable IO capabilities. Each integrates PCIe 3.0-capable expansion slots. Users can choose their technology, speed, and various other options like switch-independent partitioning.

Each system provides four NIC ports on the back panel. The R730xd provides six PCIe expansion slots, while the R740xd offers eight. You can install them on the system board by using various selections of PCIe expansion card risers.

Consumption of Power and Energy Efficiency
Both servers offer you a Power supply units (PSU) portfolio which includes various intelligent features that do things like dynamically optimizing efficiency without sacrificing availability and maintaining redundancy.

The R730xd provides the Energy Smart Solution Advisor (ESSA) tool for right-sizing capabilities. It helps IT professionals manage the planning and tuning of IT infrastructure components through calculations of hardware power consumption, power infrastructure, and storage. You’ll find more advanced capabilities in the R740xd when using the upgraded Enterprise Infrastructure Planning Tool (EIPT).

The R740xd also pushes system management forward through within the Dell Remote Access Controller 9 (iDRAC9), an upgrade over the iDRAC8 version within the R730xd. The functionality assists IT administrators in tasks like deployments, updates, monitoring, and other services without needing to install additional software.

Comparing the R730xd and R740xd
There’s a lot to unpack when it comes to the performance and capabilities provided by both servers. Anyone who’s already using the R730xd understands the support it gives and how it helps in system management and other core processes. Still, we feel that it might be worth the investment to upgrade to the R740xd based on how it manages to deepen and expand upon the greatness of the R730xd.

We’d recommend any new adapters go with the R740xd. You’ll have a server capable of scaling up to handle any of your business needs while providing you with expanded insight into how the server performs on a day to day basis. As your business grows, you’ll appreciate the additional flexibility provided by the upgraded R740xd.

Ready to take the plunge and upgrade your company servers? Contact VRLA Tech by calling (213) 810-3013 or reaching out through our online form.

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