Dell SC440 Graphics card? - PowerEdge General HW Forum - Servers - Dell Community

Dell SC440 Graphics card?


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Dell SC440 Graphics card?

  • Can anyone out there tell me if they have improved the Graphics rendering of their Dell Server SC440 in any way shape or form? I know that Dell have put restrictions on the PCI slots in order to prevent trying to use a server like a PC - but I wondered if anyone had gotten around these limitations somehow to improve the graphics rendering? Perhaps there is a BIOS restriction that can be de-restricted for example. Or perhaps someone has found a graphics card that actually works very well within these restrictions. I am running a Dell SC440 with Pentium 945 Dual core 3GHz processor - 1Gb of ECC memory - 160Gb SATA hard disk.
  • I can't help you but maybe if enough of us voice our frustration someone will pay attention.  I have tried several graphics cards with no luck.  Support says there is  no way to disable the on-board graphics to divert to the cards.
    Why did you say "I know that Dell have put restrictions on the PCI slots in order to prevent trying to use a server like a PC "   That's exactly what I'm trying to do.  Why would they care?
  • I understand they don't want you using their servers as PCs to divert the attention away from buying their PCs. You may or may not know that they have restricted the PCI-e slot to x1 speed. I am sure they have their marketing reasons for doing this. To be honest, I'm not too bothered about putting in a graphics card - because I am not running anything too 3D intensive on this Server. It's just something I would probably do if I knew I could do it from the experiences on this forum. I tried playing a DVD on this servers and it was quite adequate using the built in ATI E1000 graphics chipset (although strangely enough the video seemed to be sliced in four even sections with a very thin horizontal line when it played - check this out for yourself and tell me your results when looking closely). Download VLC player to play your DVDs, it's very good. I can't expect too much I suppose! At least XP does install on it. But you MUST use the Windows 2003 graphics drivers that come on the Dell server disc to get an obvious improvement in graphical performance!!! This was blindingly obvious. I only paid £99 plus VAT and free delivery for mine - I guess I can't complain. The case is very good quality, I hope one day I could just replace the motherboard if I felt the need to upgrade the graphics - AS LONG AS Dell have not put in proprietary fittings in order to have their motherboard and no one else's installed. Has anyone tried this yet?
  • CDGeorge,
           Thanks for the info.  They should put a warning or something on description so we know this before we buy.  I'll try your video solution and let you know.  FYI, the 2970 comes with 8x PCIe slots and I bought adaptors for 15x cards and it seems to work.  Windows recoginizes my Sapphire video card and says its working but I cannot get the output to route to it. 
          I was thinking of the new motherboard approach as well since I really like the server.  But all Dell will tell me is that the current board was manufactured just for them and is proprietary.  If we could get the form factor I bet AMD could supply a replacement.  I'll let you know how it goes.
  • We use the SC430 and 440's as desktop pc's in our company. There are not many options be we are using this card (a
  • I had the same problem using the SC440 as file server with multimedia files. I wasn't even able to watch the video files on it.
    The next problem occured when I tried to connect it to my TFT screen (2405fpw) as the second source - the internal video card would only allow a 1280x1024 resolution.
    So I read this thread (and others) and decided to try some addin PCI video cards. I ended up with an XFX Geforce 5200FX PCI card. It works great and it was much cheaper than the card mentioned in the last message. Gf 5200FX (pci) cards with 128MB are availlable starting at 50 € (Germany, incl. VAT, plus shipping; = 65 $) The card has VGA, DVI and TV-out - not the DMS-59 (so you don't need an adapter) and it allows Resolutions up to 2048X1536 (looks great with 1920x1200 of the 2405fpw monitor)
    There are also some ATI Radeon 9250 PCI cards on the market (similar price) but the nVidia GeForce cards are said to have better performace - even for some 3D games. But don't expect wonders.
    I still haven't found a nVidia driver for this card with Win2003 (only Microsoft's buildin windows driver). Maybe someone has an idea.

    Message Edited by rai29 on 08-24-2007 09:34 AM