This page is the wiki home for a white paper that compares the price/performance of the Dell™ PowerEdge™ 2950 and HP Proliant DL585 G2 for virtualization. The complete paper with all details is linked, and a summary/highlights of the paper are included directly on this page.

Discussion and questions about the paper can be written in the discussion section at the bottom of this page.

Primary gifAdvantages of Dell PowerEdge 2950 2-Socket Servers over HP Proliant DL 585 G2 4-Socket Servers for Virtualization Virtualization Whitepapers - The Dell TechCenter

White Paper Executive Summary

To illustrate the advantages of using two-socket servers for virtualization over four-socket servers, a test was conducted with VMware® Infrastructure 3 on the Dell PowerEdge 2950 and the HP ProLiant DL585 G2. The results of these tests show that three PowerEdge 2950 two-socket servers can provide up to 44 percent more performance, 57 percent more performance per watt, and a 95 percent average advantage in price/performance than two HP ProLiant DL585 G2 four-socket servers.

White Paper Highlights

All the tables on this page are taken directly from the white paper. Please see the complete paper for full details.

This table from the paper shows the configuration and pricing of the two servers used in the testing:


HP ProLiant DL585 G2 PowerEdge 2950 servers
Virtualization software VMware ESX Server 3.0.1 VMware ESX Server 3.0.1
Processor Four dual-core AMD Opteron 2.8 GHz 8220SE processors with 1 MB L2 caches (per core) Two quad-core Intel Xeon X5355 processors at 2.66 GHz with 8MB cache (shared)
HyperTransport / Frontside bus 1 GHz 1,333 MHz
Memory 32 GB (16x 667 MHz PC2-5300 DDR2 2GB DIMMs) 16 GB (8x 667 MHz fully buffered 2GB DIMMs)
Internal disks Two Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) 73 GB, 15,000 rpm drives Two Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) 146 GB, 15,000 rpm drives
Network interface card (NIC) Two 10/100/1,000 Mbps internal NICs Two 10/100/1,000 Mbps internal NICs
Disk controller Smart Array P400 PERC 5/i
Hardware Cost $28,088 $13,498
VMware Licensing Cost $13,914 $7,188
Source http://www.hp.com 12/18/2006 http://www.dell.com 12/18/2006

This table from the paper shows the performance results of the two servers on three different virtualization workloads:


HP ProLiant DL585 G2 PowerEdge 2950
Workload Number of VMs Performance Power Consumption (W) Number of VMs Performance Power Consumption (W)
Microsoft SQL Server 2005 36 31,729 OPM 719 32 29,346 OPM 449
SUSE LAMP 46 10,093 OPM 743 44 9,852 OPM 447
NetBench 52 1,028 Mb/sec 735 42 1,001 Mb/sec 444

The next table shows how the performance results and associated costs would scale, and as additional Dell two-socket or HP four-socket servers were added to the server farm:


2 HP ProLiant DL585 G2s 3 PowerEdge 2950s Dell Advantage
Total Number of Sockets 8 6
SQL Server 2005 72 VMs / 63,458 OPM 96 VMs / 88,038 OPM 33% / 39%
SUSE LAMP 92 VMs / 20,186 OPM 132 VMs / 29,556 OPM 44% / 46%
NetBench 104 VMs / 2056 Mb/s 126 VMs / 3003 Mb/s 22% / 46%
Averaged Cumulative Power Consumption on SQL/SUSE/ Netbench (W) 1465 1340 9%
Hardware Cost $56,176 $40,494 39%
ESX Licensing $27,828 $21,564 29%
Total Cost $84,004 $62,058 35%

Performance per watt:


HP ProLiant DL585 G2 PowerEdge 2950 Dell Advantage
SQL Server 2005 44.1 OPM / watt 65.4 OPM / watt 48%
SUSE LAMP 13.6 OPM / watt 22.0 OPM / watt 62%
NetBench 1.4 Mb/s / watt 2.3Mb/s / watt 61%



57 % Average

Price/Performance:


2 HP ProLiant DL585 G2s 3 PowerEdge 2950s Dell Advantage
SQL Server 2005 $1.32 / OPM $ .70 / OPM 88 %
SUSE LAMP $4.16 / OPM $2.09 / OPM 98 %
NetBench $40.86 / Mb/s $20.67 / Mb/s 98 %



95 % Average

Please post comments and questions about this paper just below in the comments section - Thanks.