ASRock Rack X570D4U-2L2T Management
The out-of-band management is the standout feature of this motherboard and is handled by the ASPEED AST2500. Full KVM support is included out of the box, along with the ability to perform BIOS and BMC upgrades from within the web GUI.
The KVM is available via HTML5 or Java, and one small perk over the Supermicro HTML5 client is the ability to easily mount CD/DVD ISO media directly from the HTML5 KVM client. Since the inclusion of the BMC is the defining feature of this motherboard, executing this feature well is a must and the solution on the X570D4U-2L2T mostly works well and does not require any additional licensing for full functionality.
New to the X570 boards over the X470 predecessors is the ability to access the BIOS settings themselves via the BMC. On the X570D4I-2T this functionality was partially broken, presenting only a subset of the options available in the full preboot BIOS and never updating the system inventory; on the X570D4U-2L2T the remote BIOS is completely broken, and simply fails to load any functional user interface.
This remote BIOS may be web implementation atop a Redfish API, but I was unable to verify anything other than the non-functionality of the web UI. Redfish is not mentioned in any of ASRock Rack’s documentation nor specifications, and so this feature remains entirely undocumented.
Additionally, the BMC exhibited the same slow transfer speeds for mounted media that previous ASRock Rack series boards demonstrated on both the HTML5 and Java iKVM clients. Despite the BMC itself being linked to the network at 1GbE rates, transfer speeds were still very slow. This behavior was identical to the X570D4I-2T, and the BMC remote media seemed artificially limited to 1.39 MB/s.
As a sanity check, I performed the same test on an older Supermicro X10SRL-F board which ran at above 6 MB/s, so even in the context of other ASPEED BMC implementations, the ASRock Rack remote media is slow.
ASRock Rack has again adjusted the default number of remote media instances; this time, set to zero by default. This does mean that users will have to adjust this setting in the BMC UI to enable remote media support, since without any remote media instances enabled the options to mount a virtual ISO are missing.
Overall, this is a fairly standard MegaRAC SP-X management solution. Having the ability to utilize remote iKVM on the platform as well as perform tasks such as remote power cycling and use management tools is a key feature of this platform.
ASRock Rack X570D4U-2L2T Test Configuration
Here is the basic test configuration we used:
- System: ASRock Rack X570D4U-2L2T
- CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600, 3950X
- Memory: 2x Crucial 16GB ECC UDIMMs
- OS SSD: Samsung 970 EVO Plus 250GB
In the future, the AMD Ryzen 5000 series may become a more popular option, but giving pricing and availability, it seems as though the Ryzen 3000 series is going to be more popular in the short-term.
ASRock Rack X570D4U-2L2T Server OS Testing
Like the previous ASRock Rack Ryzen-based server boards X470D4U before it, the X570D4U-2L2T has a very small list of officially supported operating systems; this list consists of Windows 10, Ubuntu 18.04, and RHEL 8.1. This list is at least includes newer versions of Ubuntu and RHEL than the previous motherboards. Just as before, we undertook the task of testing various other operating systems that are not on this list. This testing is not comprehensive; operating systems were installed and tested for basic functionality but not much more. Potential purchasers would want to verify their particular OS and applications work on this platform before investing in the widespread deployment of this solution. With that said, we were able to install and operate the following list of operating systems without issue:
- Windows 10 x64 2004
- Windows Server 2019
- Ubuntu 20.04.4
- CentOS 8.1.1911
- VMware ESXi 6.7 Update 3
- FreeNAS 11.3-U2
Next, we are going to discuss performance and power consumption before getting to our final thoughts on the platform.