HPE ProLiant ML30 Gen10 Internal Features
Inside the chassis, one can see a fairly standard design. Airflow is designed differently from what we would see on the HPE ProLiant ML110 Gen 10. The bottom PCIe section still uses a nice airflow channel, one that is solid an, unlike the flimsy mylar pieces that lower-tier server vendors often use. Cooling the Intel Xeon E-2100 series CPU is a large fan on a radial heatsink. This is similar to but significantly more robust than Intel’s own thermal solution in this space. The rear exhaust fan pulls air through the chassis, as do the CPUs. Unlike in the ML110 Gen10, DIMMs are oriented top to bottom instead of front to back. In this lower-power platform, that is all one needs.
Under the airflow guide, we find four PCIe slots. One of the PCIe x16 slots is PCIe 3.0 electrical and connects directly to the CPU. Two PCIe x8 and a x16 physical slot are all PCIe 3.0 x4 electrical and connect through the system’s Intel C246 PCH.
We also wanted to point out that the HPE ProLiant ML30 Gen10 includes a M.2 slot. This M.2 slot is a PCIe 3.0 x2 slot which means one does not get the full benefit on some M.2 NVMe SSDs of a x4 connection. At the same time, there are devices like Intel Optane Memory that can offer a lot of performance in a x2 electrical mode and x2 is perfectly ample for boot devices. We like the inclusion here.
There are a total of six SATA III 6.0Gbps ports onboard. These power the front panel storage. HPE also has an internal Type-A USB 3.0 header for using internal USB media.
These ports connect to the backplane. As we can see, only half of the eight 2.5″ drive bays are electrically connected. HPE would suggest that you add a SAS controller if you wanted to support SAS drives and/or use all eight bays here. In the 4×3.5″ configuration, this is not necessary.
Overall, we think that the solution makes sense. The HPE ProLiant ML30 Gen10 is built significantly better than the HPE ProLiant MicroServer Gen10, but not as well as the ML110 Gen10. Since the ML30 Gen10 is designed to occupy the segment between the two, it seems HPE met their product positioning objective.
Next, we are going to look at the HPE iLO management of the ML30 Gen10 before proceeding with our review.