Late last week I found a great deal on Dell.com for an entry-level PowerEdge Server, the SC440. A couple years ago I bought an SC430 and it has been running great, so I know they’re good machines. The machine I bought last week, which was delivered yesterday, is a 2Ghz dual core Intel w/ 2GB RAM, 160GB hard drive, and no Operating System.
Last night I decided to get it out of the box and install Windows 2008. Being curious, I decided to use the Dell Management Tools CD to install a few things pre-OS (a utility partition, etc). So I put the disc in and rebooted. Nothing but the standard “No Operating System…” message. Tried a few more times, same results.
I figured I’d forget it and just go on with a normal OS install and popped in the Windows 08 disc. Same thing, the machine just didn’t want to boot from disc. Being annoyed, I hopped online and chatted with Dell tech support.
Get this… Dell actually sells these things with CDROM only by default – NO DVD DRIVE! I couldn’t believe that a) they still sell CDROM-only and b) they still packaged a DVD with the server!
I swapped the drive with a DVD drive I had laying around and went on my way. Lesson learned, pay more attention to the little options on the order page.