Hardware sources



  • Hey... my company has been relying on http://www.thinkmate.com/ for their server needs. This isn't a company I know much about when it comes to server hardware. Do any of you know much about them? Are they any good? What is your hardware brand of choice? I've used dell in the past, and have loved them, but I'm not sure if it is worth trying to make the change.
    #servers #thinkmate #dell #hp


  • Service Provider

    ThinkMate is primarily a SuperMicro builder. That's what you really want from them. They are pretty well known in that space.



  • Gotcha. What's your preference for hardware vendors? The biggest thing for me, is that I miss the Dell iDrac, especially when it came to monitoring hard drives in raid configurations, though I believe we should be able to work something out similarly on thinkmate. I was always impressed with dell support too. I thought it was awesome that they would have a parts and repairs done on site within 24 hours. That came in handy more often for laptop / desktop repair than servers, but it was nice all the same. And when I had to deal with their support techs, I generally felt like they knew what they were doing, which was nice.


  • Service Provider

    These days, nearly everything is either Dell via xByte or SuperMicro. HPE is good, but expensive and very limiting. IBM left the market. Oracle and Fujitsu are overly specialized. Cisco is acceptable quality and price but with silly overhead to manage it that rules it out from any serious use and I've never heard of a viable business that actually auditioned it and kept it - it's just not on par with gear like SuperMicro, which is expected as this mirrors their low quality networking gear to a t. That's pretty much the entire field of enterprise players today except for really niche stuff. Huawei is up and coming, looks good but hard to get in the US.



  • I had a sales guy reach out to me about Synology. Have you had any exposure to them?


  • Service Provider

    @bj said in Hardware sources:

    I had a sales guy reach out to me about Synology. Have you had any exposure to them?

    I like their NAS. Use them in a couple of clients.

    Just had one fail and they easily did an advanced RMA (yes credit card hold required. this is SMB, that is normal).

    Had my on site hands swap drives and it all came right back up.


  • Service Provider

    @bj said in Hardware sources:

    I had a sales guy reach out to me about Synology. Have you had any exposure to them?

    A lot. They are great for low end "SMB" secondary storage. What use case did you have in mind for them? They are the best of the SMB storage category - but that doesn't change what they are. If you need that kind of storage, they are great. We recommend them often as backup targets. But they have no place in your primary storage world.



  • @bj said in Hardware sources:

    The biggest thing for me, is that I miss the Dell iDrac, especially when it came to monitoring hard drives in raid configurations, though I believe we should be able to work something out similarly on thinkmate.

    Supermicro has OOB management as well, it's really rather a low cost item too. Like $20 bucks one time.



  • So where do you guys go to get your web / db rack-mount servers (and why)?



  • @bj you already asked that question. You buy them from same vendors just spec them differently



  • Sorry @Texkonc, I'm just trying to decide if it is worth switching vendors, or if it doesn't really matter. Thus far, I've got the impression that people might prefer dell, but they haven't exactly come out and said it. I don't want to change vendors just because, but I don't want to stay on the same vendor just because either. I get the impression there are people here who have exposure to a wide variety of setups. I was hoping to get feedback from them if they prefer one vendor over another, or if either would do. I'm just trying to make informed purchasing decisions.


  • Service Provider

    @bj said in Hardware sources:

    So where do you guys go to get your web / db rack-mount servers (and why)?

    xByte. Because refurb makes the most sense 99% of the time and they give great prices and service.


  • Service Provider

    @bj said in Hardware sources:

    Thus far, I've got the impression that people might prefer dell, but they haven't exactly come out and said it.

    I prefer Dell because I can get it refurb with full warranty through xByte. I've been hinting to them that we'd like them to offer SuperMicro as well, though.



  • Dell is what I use. HPE has been upping their game with support too. I have used Xbyte and a lot of people here also have used them and they are good quality.


  • Service Provider

    @dbeato said in Hardware sources:

    Dell is what I use. HPE has been upping their game with support too. I have used Xbyte and a lot of people here also have used them and they are good quality.

    And they are active here in the community, too.


  • Vendor

    @bj said in Hardware sources:

    Hey... my company has been relying on http://www.thinkmate.com/ for their server needs. This isn't a company I know much about when it comes to server hardware. Do any of you know much about them? Are they any good? What is your hardware brand of choice? I've used dell in the past, and have loved them, but I'm not sure if it is worth trying to make the change.
    #servers #thinkmate #dell #hp

    Dell Direct?


  • Vendor

    @scottalanmiller said in Hardware sources:

    @bj said in Hardware sources:

    Thus far, I've got the impression that people might prefer dell, but they haven't exactly come out and said it.

    I prefer Dell because I can get it refurb with full warranty through xByte. I've been hinting to them that we'd like them to offer SuperMicro as well, though.

    xByte is an excellent option if company doesn't need new!


  • Vendor

    @bj said in Hardware sources:

    I had a sales guy reach out to me about Synology. Have you had any exposure to them?

    SOHO units.


  • Service Provider

    @KOOLER said in Hardware sources:

    @scottalanmiller said in Hardware sources:

    @bj said in Hardware sources:

    Thus far, I've got the impression that people might prefer dell, but they haven't exactly come out and said it.

    I prefer Dell because I can get it refurb with full warranty through xByte. I've been hinting to them that we'd like them to offer SuperMicro as well, though.

    xByte is an excellent option if company doesn't need new!

    They sell new as well now.



  • I'll have to take a look at xbyte. I was trying to get quotes from SHI, but haven't been too impressed with them thus far.



  • I'm a fan of Dell and xbyte. Supermicro is fine as well, but the support and speccing process seem different.

    But only because they're (supermicro) site is Just so massive with options.


  • Service Provider

    @bj said in Hardware sources:

    I'll have to take a look at xbyte. I was trying to get quotes from SHI, but haven't been too impressed with them thus far.

    I've not heard much good about SHI. xByte has been great. Been working with them for years.


  • Service Provider

    In my experience a good account rep trumps the trivial differences between the hardware. I have a good rep at CDW and HPE gear has worked well for me. I haven't gone the way of buying refurb yet.


  • Service Provider

    @Mike-Davis said in Hardware sources:

    In my experience a good account rep trumps the trivial differences between the hardware. I have a good rep at CDW and HPE gear has worked well for me. I haven't gone the way of buying refurb yet.

    A good rep is necessary, but other than placing your orders quickly, what value do they add? You can't use them for anything other than quotes and placing orders and RMAs, that sort of thing. You don't even need an account rep, just place orders. Account reps, even good ones, are just in the way. No need for them.


  • Service Provider

    @scottalanmiller said in Hardware sources:

    A good rep is necessary, but other than placing your orders quickly, what value do they add? You can't use them for anything other than quotes and placing orders and RMAs, that sort of thing. You don't even need an account rep, just place orders. Account reps, even good ones, are just in the way. No need for them.

    When I get requests like the one last week for a laptop with rubber bumpers, I could search the internet, or I just email my account rep, tell him what specs I want in the laptop and tell him I want a case for it protects the edges. Huge time saver for me. And if it doesn't fit or something, I just email him back and let him make it right.


  • Service Provider

    @scottalanmiller said in Hardware sources:

    A good rep is necessary, but other than placing your orders quickly, what value do they add? You can't use them for anything other than quotes and placing orders and RMAs, that sort of thing. You don't even need an account rep, just place orders. Account reps, even good ones, are just in the way. No need for them.

    Also when buying new HPE stuff, there are often "smart buys" that are preconfigured options offered at a lower price. If you just use a website to search for what you're looking for, you might miss out on those and pay more than you need to for the same hardware.


  • Service Provider

    @Mike-Davis said in Hardware sources:

    @scottalanmiller said in Hardware sources:

    A good rep is necessary, but other than placing your orders quickly, what value do they add? You can't use them for anything other than quotes and placing orders and RMAs, that sort of thing. You don't even need an account rep, just place orders. Account reps, even good ones, are just in the way. No need for them.

    When I get requests like the one last week for a laptop with rubber bumpers, I could search the internet, or I just email my account rep, tell him what specs I want in the laptop and tell him I want a case for it protects the edges. Huge time saver for me. And if it doesn't fit or something, I just email him back and let him make it right.

    So you let a salesman determine the best fit for your needs? If you aren't doing any research, how do you know he didn't just screw your customer by selling the thing that earns him the most margin (CDW is famous for how extremely they do this.) And what's your role here? If the customer wanted to engage predatory salesman directly, they could. No need for an IT person.


  • Service Provider

    @Mike-Davis said in Hardware sources:

    @scottalanmiller said in Hardware sources:

    A good rep is necessary, but other than placing your orders quickly, what value do they add? You can't use them for anything other than quotes and placing orders and RMAs, that sort of thing. You don't even need an account rep, just place orders. Account reps, even good ones, are just in the way. No need for them.

    Also when buying new HPE stuff, there are often "smart buys" that are preconfigured options offered at a lower price. If you just use a website to search for what you're looking for, you might miss out on those and pay more than you need to for the same hardware.

    And vice versa. If you only go through CDW you'll only hear about Smart Buys and other promotions that are in their interest.


  • Service Provider

    @scottalanmiller said in Hardware sources:

    So you let a salesman determine the best fit for your needs? If you aren't doing any research, how do you know he didn't just screw your customer by selling the thing that earns him the most margin (CDW is famous for how extremely they do this.) And what's your role here? If the customer wanted to engage predatory salesman directly, they could. No need for an IT person.

    My role was picking the specs for the laptop. When he quotes me the laptop and case, I can take a look and spot check the price if I want. After he finds a case, I can take a look at it and see what kind of reviews it has.

    How would you handle a request like that from a customer?


  • Service Provider

    @Mike-Davis said in Hardware sources:

    @scottalanmiller said in Hardware sources:

    So you let a salesman determine the best fit for your needs? If you aren't doing any research, how do you know he didn't just screw your customer by selling the thing that earns him the most margin (CDW is famous for how extremely they do this.) And what's your role here? If the customer wanted to engage predatory salesman directly, they could. No need for an IT person.

    My role was picking the specs for the laptop. When he quotes me the laptop and case, I can take a look and spot check the price if I want. After he finds a case, I can take a look at it and see what kind of reviews it has.

    How would you handle a request like that from a customer?

    If I'm only asked to get specs and then pass it back to the customer and my job is done and they ask me to forward on to a salesguy and to step away, then sure, I'd do that. That's like asking your real estate agent how many square feet you need and then telling the agent to not be involved and let the seller's agent sell whatever they can get away with.

    But if I'm in the IT role and responsible as the buyer's agent (IT role = buyer's agent for businesses) then it's my responsibility to know what is out there and do the research. Sure, there are cases where a single item is so trivially cheap and commodity that it's not worth the time to research - but normally in those cases you just go to Amazon, at least to see prices. Someone like CDW is a VAR and tack on a lot of cost (normally hidden in upsales) associated with using them. Like they don't give good discounts, sell based on kickbacks and behind the scenes promotions and such - CDW is the most well known in the industry for this as their "recommended" solutions change week to week based on the current vendor promotions. They don't recommend what is good for you, but what is good for them.

    If customers don't want a buyer's representative, that's fine and up to them. But is it clear to them that they are being sold stuff by a sales person directly without any buyer's agent anywhere in the stream? It's like going to a real estate sale, telling the seller you'll buy anything they recommend with the adequate square footage. Yes, you'll get a house quickly, but it'll be the one for which the seller gets the highest commission and not one based around the buyer's needs.


Log in to reply
 

Looks like your connection to MangoLassi was lost, please wait while we try to reconnect.