Types Of Servers For Small Business

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Best small business servers of 2021 | TechRadar

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The best small business servers listed here can give you complete control over your growing business’ data, and that means it could be one of the best investments you can make in there has been a trend for businesses, especially small and medium sized ones, to use cloud-based servers, there are many reasons why you’d be better off going with your own on-site, this can be initially more expensive than dedicated server hosting, or renting your own bare metal server, but in the long-term it will almost certainly prove to be the more cost-effective option, even by comparison to cheap dedicated hosting deals. This is especially the case if you choose a Linux server distro and you already have some knowledge or training in ever, perhaps the biggest advantage is that it gives you complete control over your data and software. After all, you’re not relying on a third party to host your data. It does require more work, but you can control backups using additional server harddrives, to also provide for disaster the right server for your needs needn’t be confusing either. In this guide, we’ve picked the best small business servers that offer everything small and medium sized businesses need to get started, without costing too much money. The small business servers are easy to set up and maintain, and the manufacturers should also offer you support in case something goes best small business servers will be robust enough to be able to work under intense loads throughout the day, handling high numbers of users, and perhaps most importantly, they will also be expandable, so they can be upgraded as your business grows. 1. Dell PowerEdge T30A Xeon dream with plentiful connectivity on offerSpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon E3-1225 v5Graphics: Intel HD Graphics P530RAM: 64GBStorage: Up to six SATA HDDConnectivity: 10 x USB ports, HDMI, DisplayPort, VGA, serial, PS2, Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 17. 5 x 43. 5 x 36cmReasons to buy+Fast quad-core Xeon processor+Room for six internal disksReasons to avoid-Single Gigabit network port-No hot-swapping of disksThere are so many different servers out there, and that means that you’ll sometimes have to sort through entire price lists in order to find the best small server for you. Just look at the Dell PowerEdge T30 – you can buy it either as a barebones or as a fully configured server. Aimed at the entry-level/SoHo market, the T30 manages to fit in a ton of expansion potential into a tiny, mini-tower-like chassis, and it even comes with a wealth of server features by default, which makes it a perfect alternative to an office workstation. 2. Dell PowerEdge T20 [barebones]Shows you how cheap a barebones server can get SpecificationsCPU: Intel Pentium G3220Graphics: Intel HD GraphicsRAM: 4GBStorage: No drives includedConnectivity: Up to 12 x USB ports (4 x USB 3. 0), 2 x DisplayPort, VGA, serial, 2 x PS2, Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 17. 5 x 36cmReasons to buy+Very cheap+Compact mini-tower with easy access to internalsReasons to avoid-G3220 is more a desktop than server CPU-No drives or OSServers do not have to be massive or expensive. Take the PowerEdge T20 for example; it has benefited from a wealth of knowledge derived from the 20 years of experience Dell has building servers. While the barebones version doesn’t have a hard drive, it’s certainly cheap – in the recent past, it has been priced at less than £100 (with cashback offers, that is – it’s always well worth keeping an eye out for these) has a Haswell-based Pentium processor that can clock up to 3GHz and supports up to 32GB DDR3 ECC RAM (note that this model comes with 4GB). Expansion capabilities include four SATA ports (32TB if you use 8TB hard drives), four I/O slots and 10 USB ports. Astoundingly for a PC of this price, you also get two DisplayPort connectors, a VGA one, two PS2 and one serial port. Other than a Gigabit Ethernet port, the other points of interest are a 290W PSU and an Intel-based RAID the full review: Dell PowerEdge T20 [barebones]3. Lenovo ThinkServer TS150A Tower server offering quite potent performance SpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon E3-1200 v6RAM: Up to 64GBStorage: Up to 40TB HDDConnectivity: 8 x USB 3. 0, serial, video, 2 x DisplayPort, audio, Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 17. 5 x 37. 5 x 43cmReasons to buy+Most affordable ThinkServer model+Whisper quietReasons to avoid-Not much to complain aboutLenovo took over IBM’s x86 server range back in 2014 and has built on the best of the ThinkServer tradition. The TS150 is now the most affordable of the range and is a 4U enterprise-class server that competes with the Dell T20. It comes with support for RAID 0, 1, 10 and 5 (via an on-board controller). Like the competition, this one can accommodate up to four 3. 5-inch HDDs in total, which means that it can go up to 40TB of storage when loaded with the relevant hard drives. The relatively-recent Intel Xeon E3-1200 v6 processor should be powerful enough for small and medium also claims that the acoustics of the TS150 are even quieter than a typical library at 26 decibels. As is the case for the competition, you also get an impressive array of ports and connectors: eight USB ports, four PCI/PCI-e slots, three video connectors (including a pair of DisplayPorts), Serial, Gigabit Ethernet and three audio connectors. (Image credit: HPE)4. HPE ProLiant ML350 Gen 10Powerful and versatileSpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon Scalable 4210Graphics: Intel HD Graphics P530RAM: 16GBStorage: No drives includedDimensions (W x D x H): 18 x 65 x 47cmReasons to buy+Scalable+Decent designReasons to avoid-A hefty beast of a machine-Doesn’t come with hard drivesIf you’re after a robust, yet versatile, server for your small business, then the HPE ProLiant ML350 Gen 10 is an excellent choice. Packed with Intel Xeon Scalable processors, this offers a big performance boost over the previous models. You need to fit your own storage, but it supports a wide range of fast options, as well as wide support for graphics and compute options as well. While it starts out as a tower server, as your business grows, the HPE ProLiant ML350 Gen 10 can be turned into a rack server for an affordable way to keep your business going without having to buy a new server altogether. 5. Fujitsu Primergy TX1310 M1Fujitsu’s reliability guarantee is second to none SpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon E3-1226 v3Graphics: Intel HD Graphics P4600RAM: 16GBStorage: 2 x 1TB HDDConnectivity: 5 x USB 3. 0, 2 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 17. 5 x 42 x 39. 5cmReasons to buy+Fantastic guarantee+Has an optical driveReasons to avoid-No RAID 5-Fujitsu isn’t the first brand you’d think ofWhen you think about servers, Fujitsu is probably not the first vendor which springs to mind. And yet, the Japanese manufacturer is one of the very few (if not the only one) that can claim to be involved in anything from SMB servers to, well, supercomputers. The TX1310 is its entry-level, SMB-focused server and comes with some pretty solid credentials plus an unmatched, industry-leading reliability guarantee. If your server breaks down within the first year of purchase, not only will Fujitsu fix or replace it, the company will also refund you the amount you paid for the pretty much everyone at this end of the market, it is designed to run silently 24/7 and offers RAID 0/1/10 but not 5. This model incudes an Intel Xeon E3-1226 v3, two 1TB hard drives and 16GB of RAM. We like the fact that it comes with an optical drive and has two Gigabit Ethernet ports for redundancy. With four DIMM slots and four storage bays, this server supports up to 32TB of storage and 32GB of memory. 6. HP Proliant Microserver Gen8A compact if slightly noisy server SpecificationsCPU: Intel Celeron G1610TGraphics: Matrox G200RAM: 4GBStorage: No drives includedConnectivity: 4 x USB 2. 0, 2 x USB 3. 0, VGA, 2 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 23 x 24. 5 x 23cmReasons to buy+Professional build quality with ease of access+Compact sizeReasons to avoid-No hot-swap disks-Could be quieterOne of the fastest growing segments of the server market is dominated by a single company. HP Enterprise’s Proliant Microserver Gen8 has successfully managed to fend off competition – thanks to an attractive feature mix and plenty of discounts – and ultimately own this market. These tiny servers have found a market well outside their niche with prosumers buying them en masse and touting their obvious advantages over NAS (network attached storage). Despite being very small (less than 13l in volume) and light (less than 7kg), this machine packs some impressive capabilities. We’re talking support for Intel’s Xeon E3 family, up to 16GB of RAM, on system management processor, two Gigabit Ethernet ports, one PCIe slot, support for RAID 0/1/10, a DVD writer, up to four hard disk drives, an internal microSD card slot, an integrated Matrox G200 graphics chip and seven USB ports. It only has a VGA port, though, and has just two memory the full review: HP Proliant Microserver Gen87. Lenovo ThinkServer TS460A beefy server that can handle up to eight drives SpecificationsCPU: Xeon E3-1200 v6Graphics: Intel HD Graphics P630RAM: Up to 64GBStorage: 2x external fixed 5. 25-inch bays, maximum storage 80TBConnectivity: 6 x USB 3. 0, serial, video, 2 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 44. 4 x 58. 3 x 17. 3cmReasons to buy+Impressive performer+Three-year onsite warrantyReasons to avoid-Not cheap-A big machineIf you want something a bit beefier than the aforementioned servers, then consider the TS460. It is far more expensive but then again you get a server that’s in another league. For a start, it is far bigger than the previously mentioned servers with a 50 litre volume and a 25kg weight. This 5U server runs on Intel’s Xeon E3 models with Turbo Boost technology plus it offers a three-year onsite supports up to 64GB of RAM and its integrated RAID controller offers the four main RAID types. You get a DVD writer, four fans, a 300W PSU and two Gigabit Ethernet ports. Up to eight hard disk drives can be installed and there are a whopping eight USB ports as well. There’s a lockable door, support for ECC memory, plus a serial and a VGA connector. 8. HP ProLiant ML350 G9 5UExtremely well-featured server offering plenty of power SpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon E5-2603 v3Graphics: Matrox G200RAM: 8GBStorage: No drives includedConnectivity: 4 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): N/AReasons to buy+Six-core Xeon CPU+Three-year onsite NBD warrantyReasons to avoid-It’ll certainly dent your wallet-Not much else to complain aboutPitching in the same category as the TS440 is the ML350. This is an expensive piece of kit but just look at the feature list and it actually seems like a very decent deal. Other than the fact that it has a dedicated, integrated graphics card (Matrox G200), it offers a three-year onsite next business day warranty, four Gigabit Ethernet ports and support for 12Gbps SAS (note that it takes only 2. 5-inch drives) there’s more – this server runs an Intel Xeon E5-2603 v3 processor (not the usual E3 CPU) and supports two CPUs. The E5 has six cores which makes it particularly well-suited for more taxing tasks. We’re also impressed by the amount of memory slots (24) that it has, allowing it to hit 3TB of memory once 128GB LRDIMM roll out. Oh and other than a lockable front door and a storage controller, this server earns brownie points for having dual redundant, hot-swappable 500W PSUs. 9. Scan 3XS SER-T25A beast driven by twin Xeon processors SpecificationsCPU: Dual Intel Xeon E5-2603 v4Graphics: Nvidia GT 610RAM: 64GBStorage: 1TB HDDConnectivity: 2 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 23. 2 x 56 x 55. 9cmReasons to buy+Compact and quiet+Very powerfulReasons to avoid-Not the cheapest (but well-priced given its power)-Any other complaint would be nit-pickingA powerful server doesn’t have to be expensive – that’s essentially what Scan wants to convey to prospective customers. Specifically designed for the SMB market, this 3XS offering is engineered to be compact and as quiet as possible. The UK-based vendor provides real-time tracking at every stage of the server build process (the servers are built to order, and production includes a 24 hour burn test and 88 point QC check). Each comes with a three-year onsite warranty; what’s more, you get a free recovery USB stick with diagnostic that wasn’t enough, the components used in the system are amongst the best in our round-up. Two Broadwell-based Intel Xeon E5-2603 v4 processors provide a total of 12 cores and 30MB of cache. Then there’s 64GB of DDR4 ECC RAM from Samsung, a 1TB WD Enterprise-class hard disk drive, two Intel Gigabit Ethernet ports, a 1000W Gold PSU and support for eight hard disk drives. Built by Corsair, the case has a door and all the panels are lined with noise damping material. 10. Asus TS500A mainstream tower server with flexibility in spades SpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3Graphics: N/ARAM: As orderedStorage: No Drives IncludedConnectivity: 8 x USB ports, VGA, PS2, 3 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 22 x 54. 5 x 45. 5cmReasons to buy+Perfect for server and workstation use+No shortage of power and flexibilityReasons to avoid-Not everyone will need all those features-Seeing the Asus label may surprise someLike Supermicro, Asus is not well known for its servers. Instead, the Taiwanese company, one of the biggest component vendors in the world, is popular for a wide range of consumer products including its motherboards. Its TS500-E8-PS4 is a mainstream pedestal 5U tower server perfectly built for both workstation and server dual features the latest Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v3 product families, eight DDR4 DIMMs (supporting half a terabyte of RAM), six expansion slots, three 5. 25-inch media bays and a single 500W 80 Plus Bronze power supply. There are four 3. 5-inch hot-swap SATA/SAS HDD bays which is also upgradable to eight HDD bays for flexible storage addition, with Intel’s Intelligent Platform Management Interface (IPMI) 2. 0-compliant ASMB8-iKVM module in the TS500 you’ll be able to monitor, control and manage the server remotely. Other key specs include 10 SATA ports, a DVD writer, eight USB ports, a PS2 port, a VGA one and three Gigabit Ethernet ports. Note that this is a barebones server, but obviously that gives you plenty of flexibility – something this machine offers in spades.
Managing Editor, TechRadar Pro
Désiré has been musing and writing about technology in a career spanning four decades. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global techfests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. He has an affinity for anything hardware and staunchly refuses to stop writing reviews of obscure products or cover niche B2B software-as-a-service providers.
How to set up a server for a small or mid-sized business

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How to set up a server for a small or mid-sized business

Everything you need to know about how to set up a network and server for your small business. From installing windows to creating a server room in your office. As your business grows and you take on more employees, the time will come where you need a server to keep your office network and business running efficiently. But with a seemingly endless array of choices and important decisions to be made, you might be wondering where to start. Luckily, setting up a server for a small or mid-sized business (SMB) doesn’t have to be difficult.
In this guide, we’ll take you through everything you need to know including what a server is, deciding between hardware or the cloud, choosing the right operating system, and the best way to set it all up.
What is a server?
In simple terms, it’s a powerful computer that is used to serve information and software to employees, customers, and other computers. For example, if you have five employees in an office each working on a different computer, they should all be able to access the same software and documents. These are served from a central computer rather than having multiple versions of the files stored locally on each machine.
Choosing a server for businesses
Once you have two or more computers in your business or need remote access to the company network, it’s time to invest in a server. Doing so will allow you and your employees to access software and files from anywhere and give you greater control over access rights to certain information, such as personnel files or payroll data. It will also give you the ability to protect your business information with a dedicated backup and recovery system, as well as allow for easier management of network security.
Types of servers for businesses
When it comes to choosing a server for a small or mid-sized business, the key question is: what do you need the server to do? In essence, you want to allow your business room to grow, but not invest so heavily that you’re overpaying for resources you don’t need.
There are many different types of server and organizations will often use a separate server for each purpose. Most commonly, SMBs use servers for:
Secure email hosting
Website hosting
Document storage
Ecommerce hosting
Hosting line-of-business applications
Data backup and recovery.
Proxy servers are worth considering for businesses of any size. By routing web traffic and access through a proxy, your network’s IP addresses are protected from public view (the proxy IP address is shown instead). This anonymity offers your business an additional layer of security.
Hardware or the cloud – choosing the right server for SMBs
A crucial decision you will need to make is whether to have a physical server on-premises or opt for a cloud-based solution. There are pros and cons to each approach and what you decide ultimately comes down to the individual needs of your business.
Cloud servers
Cloud-based servers are well-suited to SMBs with limited space and IT resources. While not as fast or efficient as a dedicated server, businesses will likely find that a cloud-based server is ‘fast enough’ and the lower upfront costs make them an attractive option. Cloud hosting also benefits from redundant power supply and network connections, meaning that if there is a power outage or server issue, your network won’t experience any downtime.
On-premise servers
On the other hand, opting to build or buy a physical server comes with a higher upfront cost. But not paying recurring monthly fees may mean that it works out cheaper in the long run, especially as your business grows. You will also have greater control over how it is set up and integrated with your business cybersecurity solution. The downside is that you are responsible for the cost of replacement hardware and increased electricity for running and cooling the server 24/7.
Protecting your business servers
When utilizing a server within your operations, it is important to ensure it’s protected. Endpoint security is crucial when trying to keep your network safe from viruses, malware, or data breaches. Your server will hold confidential information about your business and its operations, but will also store your employees’ personal data. There are several steps you can take to keep your data secure: provide cybersecurity training for any necessary members of staff, use a server antivirus, track user activity, keep your server up-to-date.
Servers for businesses with Windows
Servers run specialized operating systems that are designed to be robust and able to support many users. The operating system you choose for your server is another important decision. If your business runs on the Microsoft ecosystem, you may already be familiar with Windows server offerings.
In particular, Windows Server Essentials (formerly Windows Small Business Server) is widely used in SMBs with fewer than 25 users. Windows server operating systems are often popular with existing Windows users as they share much of the same code and look very similar to their non-server counterparts.
However, even if you are already running Windows on your PCs, you still have a choice of server operating systems. Other popular options for SMBs:
Linux Ubuntu Server
Red Hat Enterprise Linux
CentOS.
Choosing your operating system
If you have not yet chosen an operating system, consider the following factors:
Cost. Linux is open-source software and, as such, is often cheaper to run than Windows.
User-friendliness. Think about how easy the operating system is to install and run, especially if you don’t have dedicated IT staff. Windows is a popular choice for this reason as its interface is often familiar. Linux, on the other hand, presents a steeper learning curve.
Flexibility. Linux typically offers more flexibility and customization options than Windows, but bear in mind that you will need technical expertise to benefit from this.
Support. Microsoft is well-known for its high-quality customer support. As Linux is open-source, you may have to hunt around for support.
Setting up a server for an SMB
Whether you build or buy your server, unless you have a dedicated IT team, you’ll need to know how everything fits together. In this section, we’ll walk you through how to build a business server, get it all set up, and how to build the ideal server room.
Building a business server
Servers typically come in three different forms – rackmount, tower, and blade. A tower server looks similar to a home PC but contains server components that are more robust than a consumer computer, allowing them to run 24/7 without interruption. Rackmount and blade servers are installed onto a chassis making them highly expandable and good options for saving space, though both are more expensive than tower systems.
Every server contains specific hardware that determines its resource capacity, in particular, CPU (central processing unit) size, hard disk storage, and RAM (random access memory). You may also wish to incorporate backup hardware components such as hot-swappable drive bays and a redundant power supply, as well as ECC (error correcting code) firmware that detects and corrects errors on the fly to reduce downtime.
The exact specifications of your server will depend on what you need it to do. For example, looking at some common uses:
A server providing database services would prioritize disk space and a hard drive capable of fast write speeds, as well as support for RAID to provide reliability. (RAID, or redundant array of independent disks, means data is held redundantly in multiple disk drives so that if one fails it is preserved. )
A file or email server would benefit from multiple hot-swappable drive bays but the CPU is not too important.
A web hosting server (which works together with a database server) would have higher RAM requirements and would benefit from hardware redundancy.
How to set up a server for a business
While the exact process of setting up a server for an SMB will vary based on your chosen hardware and operating system, there are some common steps you will need to follow.
Prepare. Before you begin, document your network. Record the names of users, IP address, hostname of each computer, serial numbers, and locations. Check both the hardware specifications and software requirements of your server. You may find that you need to upgrade the operating systems of computers on the network in order to connect them to the server. You will also need to gather any items you need for the installation such as an ethernet cable and external hard drive.
Install your server. If your server came with an operating system preinstalled, you can connect it to the network and begin configuration. If not, insert the installation media (DVD, USB, virtual media) and follow the instructions to set up your particular operating system.
Configure your server. As soon as possible after installation, set the server backup (you may need an external hard drive), set up remote access to the server, and set sharing options. Set the server as a domain controller to allow all computers in the network to join the new centralized environment and to allow the server to authenticate user credentials.
Complete the setup. Add a local admin account to each PC or Mac and connect them to the server. Set up printers and connect them to the print server. Organize and upload the data and applications you wish to have on the new server, for example, your accounting software.
Building a server room
Depending on how much space you have and your hardware choices, setting up a dedicated room to house your server is a worthwhile investment. Besides isolating noisy servers away from employees, you can ensure that everything is properly organized and set up to function optimally. When building your server room, consider the following points:
Room characteristics
Ideally, use a room with no windows and the capacity to install cooling equipment and backup power. Select a space that is big enough that you can reach the front and back of each server rack and, if possible, gives your server space to grow as your business grows.
Invest in the right equipment
While it might be tempting to use a desk or shelf to store your server, the benefits of investing in a rackmount far outweigh the costs. Racks keep your equipment secure, organized, and make it easy to rearrange server units.
You will also need a cooling system to ensure that high temperatures don’t damage your hardware. Consider installing an A/C unit that can be left on continuously, or better still, two units on separate circuit breakers to allow for a redundant supply.
Ensure security
Even for a smaller office server setup, you will need at least a lock and key to protect your expensive equipment and valuable data from theft or tampering. If your budget allows, consider installing a security camera.
A backup power supply is also highly recommended to keep your network and business running without disruption. It is good practice to install an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) to protect against power surges or outages.
Keep it organized
Cable management is an important, but often overlooked, aspect of setting up a business server. Although it requires a little extra work, an RJ45 patch panel can be used to terminate Ethernet cable runs and can provide up to 24 ports. Cable ties are also an effective and inexpensive way to keep cables organized and out of the way.
Lastly, make sure that everything is properly labeled and well-documented. It is also a good idea to document important procedures or instructions relating to your hardware and have this clearly visible near the relevant equipment.
How to set up a business network
If you are investing in a server, it makes sense to consider your whole office network at the same time. This will ensure that it meets your current needs and lays the foundation for your business to expand into the future.
Essentially, a network is a group of interconnected devices, often made up of computers, printers, scanners, and network drives. Creating a network is more efficient as it gives employees centralized access to files and data.
Choosing what’s right for you
There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to setting up a business network. Instead, think about the specific requirements of your business, such as:
The size of your office
Number and type of devices your business uses
What applications your business runs
What files employees need to share
How you will protect your network
Your future expansion plans.
A key consideration when setting up your network is whether to go wired or wireless. While a wireless setup gives you more flexibility in terms of your office layout and design, an Ethernet connection (wired) is generally more reliable, faster, and less expensive. Because of this, some businesses opt to install both a wired and wireless network.
Setting up your network
To create a network, you will need to connect the following components:
Server. Every network should have at least one server.
Switches. A switch is a component that connects the devices on your network and allows them to communicate. You will have the choice of managed and unmanaged switches, but SMBs often opt for an unmanaged switch.
Routers. A router connects different networks together, such as connecting your office network to the internet or creating an intranet.
Cables. Whether you opt for a wired or wireless network, you will still need cables. The common choices are copper or fiber optic – fiber optic is more durable and provides faster data speeds.
Get business server antivirus protection
Whichever way you decide to set up your network, it will likely contain valuable data and business information so an important consideration is how you will adequately protect it. Cyberthreats evolve every day and SMBs are often an easy target for cybercriminals. A simple way to protect your business is by installing a comprehensive cybersecurity package that includes server antivirus protection. Avast also offers Antivirus for Linux servers, helping you protect your organization no matter what server you use.
Best small business servers of 2021 | TechRadar

Best small business servers of 2021 | TechRadar

Home
News
Computing
Get the right server for your business
The best small business servers listed here can give you complete control over your growing business’ data, and that means it could be one of the best investments you can make in there has been a trend for businesses, especially small and medium sized ones, to use cloud-based servers, there are many reasons why you’d be better off going with your own on-site, this can be initially more expensive than dedicated server hosting, or renting your own bare metal server, but in the long-term it will almost certainly prove to be the more cost-effective option, even by comparison to cheap dedicated hosting deals. This is especially the case if you choose a Linux server distro and you already have some knowledge or training in ever, perhaps the biggest advantage is that it gives you complete control over your data and software. After all, you’re not relying on a third party to host your data. It does require more work, but you can control backups using additional server harddrives, to also provide for disaster the right server for your needs needn’t be confusing either. In this guide, we’ve picked the best small business servers that offer everything small and medium sized businesses need to get started, without costing too much money. The small business servers are easy to set up and maintain, and the manufacturers should also offer you support in case something goes best small business servers will be robust enough to be able to work under intense loads throughout the day, handling high numbers of users, and perhaps most importantly, they will also be expandable, so they can be upgraded as your business grows. 1. Dell PowerEdge T30A Xeon dream with plentiful connectivity on offerSpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon E3-1225 v5Graphics: Intel HD Graphics P530RAM: 64GBStorage: Up to six SATA HDDConnectivity: 10 x USB ports, HDMI, DisplayPort, VGA, serial, PS2, Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 17. 5 x 43. 5 x 36cmReasons to buy+Fast quad-core Xeon processor+Room for six internal disksReasons to avoid-Single Gigabit network port-No hot-swapping of disksThere are so many different servers out there, and that means that you’ll sometimes have to sort through entire price lists in order to find the best small server for you. Just look at the Dell PowerEdge T30 – you can buy it either as a barebones or as a fully configured server. Aimed at the entry-level/SoHo market, the T30 manages to fit in a ton of expansion potential into a tiny, mini-tower-like chassis, and it even comes with a wealth of server features by default, which makes it a perfect alternative to an office workstation. 2. Dell PowerEdge T20 [barebones]Shows you how cheap a barebones server can get SpecificationsCPU: Intel Pentium G3220Graphics: Intel HD GraphicsRAM: 4GBStorage: No drives includedConnectivity: Up to 12 x USB ports (4 x USB 3. 0), 2 x DisplayPort, VGA, serial, 2 x PS2, Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 17. 5 x 36cmReasons to buy+Very cheap+Compact mini-tower with easy access to internalsReasons to avoid-G3220 is more a desktop than server CPU-No drives or OSServers do not have to be massive or expensive. Take the PowerEdge T20 for example; it has benefited from a wealth of knowledge derived from the 20 years of experience Dell has building servers. While the barebones version doesn’t have a hard drive, it’s certainly cheap – in the recent past, it has been priced at less than £100 (with cashback offers, that is – it’s always well worth keeping an eye out for these) has a Haswell-based Pentium processor that can clock up to 3GHz and supports up to 32GB DDR3 ECC RAM (note that this model comes with 4GB). Expansion capabilities include four SATA ports (32TB if you use 8TB hard drives), four I/O slots and 10 USB ports. Astoundingly for a PC of this price, you also get two DisplayPort connectors, a VGA one, two PS2 and one serial port. Other than a Gigabit Ethernet port, the other points of interest are a 290W PSU and an Intel-based RAID the full review: Dell PowerEdge T20 [barebones]3. Lenovo ThinkServer TS150A Tower server offering quite potent performance SpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon E3-1200 v6RAM: Up to 64GBStorage: Up to 40TB HDDConnectivity: 8 x USB 3. 0, serial, video, 2 x DisplayPort, audio, Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 17. 5 x 37. 5 x 43cmReasons to buy+Most affordable ThinkServer model+Whisper quietReasons to avoid-Not much to complain aboutLenovo took over IBM’s x86 server range back in 2014 and has built on the best of the ThinkServer tradition. The TS150 is now the most affordable of the range and is a 4U enterprise-class server that competes with the Dell T20. It comes with support for RAID 0, 1, 10 and 5 (via an on-board controller). Like the competition, this one can accommodate up to four 3. 5-inch HDDs in total, which means that it can go up to 40TB of storage when loaded with the relevant hard drives. The relatively-recent Intel Xeon E3-1200 v6 processor should be powerful enough for small and medium also claims that the acoustics of the TS150 are even quieter than a typical library at 26 decibels. As is the case for the competition, you also get an impressive array of ports and connectors: eight USB ports, four PCI/PCI-e slots, three video connectors (including a pair of DisplayPorts), Serial, Gigabit Ethernet and three audio connectors. (Image credit: HPE)4. HPE ProLiant ML350 Gen 10Powerful and versatileSpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon Scalable 4210Graphics: Intel HD Graphics P530RAM: 16GBStorage: No drives includedDimensions (W x D x H): 18 x 65 x 47cmReasons to buy+Scalable+Decent designReasons to avoid-A hefty beast of a machine-Doesn’t come with hard drivesIf you’re after a robust, yet versatile, server for your small business, then the HPE ProLiant ML350 Gen 10 is an excellent choice. Packed with Intel Xeon Scalable processors, this offers a big performance boost over the previous models. You need to fit your own storage, but it supports a wide range of fast options, as well as wide support for graphics and compute options as well. While it starts out as a tower server, as your business grows, the HPE ProLiant ML350 Gen 10 can be turned into a rack server for an affordable way to keep your business going without having to buy a new server altogether. 5. Fujitsu Primergy TX1310 M1Fujitsu’s reliability guarantee is second to none SpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon E3-1226 v3Graphics: Intel HD Graphics P4600RAM: 16GBStorage: 2 x 1TB HDDConnectivity: 5 x USB 3. 0, 2 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 17. 5 x 42 x 39. 5cmReasons to buy+Fantastic guarantee+Has an optical driveReasons to avoid-No RAID 5-Fujitsu isn’t the first brand you’d think ofWhen you think about servers, Fujitsu is probably not the first vendor which springs to mind. And yet, the Japanese manufacturer is one of the very few (if not the only one) that can claim to be involved in anything from SMB servers to, well, supercomputers. The TX1310 is its entry-level, SMB-focused server and comes with some pretty solid credentials plus an unmatched, industry-leading reliability guarantee. If your server breaks down within the first year of purchase, not only will Fujitsu fix or replace it, the company will also refund you the amount you paid for the pretty much everyone at this end of the market, it is designed to run silently 24/7 and offers RAID 0/1/10 but not 5. This model incudes an Intel Xeon E3-1226 v3, two 1TB hard drives and 16GB of RAM. We like the fact that it comes with an optical drive and has two Gigabit Ethernet ports for redundancy. With four DIMM slots and four storage bays, this server supports up to 32TB of storage and 32GB of memory. 6. HP Proliant Microserver Gen8A compact if slightly noisy server SpecificationsCPU: Intel Celeron G1610TGraphics: Matrox G200RAM: 4GBStorage: No drives includedConnectivity: 4 x USB 2. 0, 2 x USB 3. 0, VGA, 2 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 23 x 24. 5 x 23cmReasons to buy+Professional build quality with ease of access+Compact sizeReasons to avoid-No hot-swap disks-Could be quieterOne of the fastest growing segments of the server market is dominated by a single company. HP Enterprise’s Proliant Microserver Gen8 has successfully managed to fend off competition – thanks to an attractive feature mix and plenty of discounts – and ultimately own this market. These tiny servers have found a market well outside their niche with prosumers buying them en masse and touting their obvious advantages over NAS (network attached storage). Despite being very small (less than 13l in volume) and light (less than 7kg), this machine packs some impressive capabilities. We’re talking support for Intel’s Xeon E3 family, up to 16GB of RAM, on system management processor, two Gigabit Ethernet ports, one PCIe slot, support for RAID 0/1/10, a DVD writer, up to four hard disk drives, an internal microSD card slot, an integrated Matrox G200 graphics chip and seven USB ports. It only has a VGA port, though, and has just two memory the full review: HP Proliant Microserver Gen87. Lenovo ThinkServer TS460A beefy server that can handle up to eight drives SpecificationsCPU: Xeon E3-1200 v6Graphics: Intel HD Graphics P630RAM: Up to 64GBStorage: 2x external fixed 5. 25-inch bays, maximum storage 80TBConnectivity: 6 x USB 3. 0, serial, video, 2 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 44. 4 x 58. 3 x 17. 3cmReasons to buy+Impressive performer+Three-year onsite warrantyReasons to avoid-Not cheap-A big machineIf you want something a bit beefier than the aforementioned servers, then consider the TS460. It is far more expensive but then again you get a server that’s in another league. For a start, it is far bigger than the previously mentioned servers with a 50 litre volume and a 25kg weight. This 5U server runs on Intel’s Xeon E3 models with Turbo Boost technology plus it offers a three-year onsite supports up to 64GB of RAM and its integrated RAID controller offers the four main RAID types. You get a DVD writer, four fans, a 300W PSU and two Gigabit Ethernet ports. Up to eight hard disk drives can be installed and there are a whopping eight USB ports as well. There’s a lockable door, support for ECC memory, plus a serial and a VGA connector. 8. HP ProLiant ML350 G9 5UExtremely well-featured server offering plenty of power SpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon E5-2603 v3Graphics: Matrox G200RAM: 8GBStorage: No drives includedConnectivity: 4 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): N/AReasons to buy+Six-core Xeon CPU+Three-year onsite NBD warrantyReasons to avoid-It’ll certainly dent your wallet-Not much else to complain aboutPitching in the same category as the TS440 is the ML350. This is an expensive piece of kit but just look at the feature list and it actually seems like a very decent deal. Other than the fact that it has a dedicated, integrated graphics card (Matrox G200), it offers a three-year onsite next business day warranty, four Gigabit Ethernet ports and support for 12Gbps SAS (note that it takes only 2. 5-inch drives) there’s more – this server runs an Intel Xeon E5-2603 v3 processor (not the usual E3 CPU) and supports two CPUs. The E5 has six cores which makes it particularly well-suited for more taxing tasks. We’re also impressed by the amount of memory slots (24) that it has, allowing it to hit 3TB of memory once 128GB LRDIMM roll out. Oh and other than a lockable front door and a storage controller, this server earns brownie points for having dual redundant, hot-swappable 500W PSUs. 9. Scan 3XS SER-T25A beast driven by twin Xeon processors SpecificationsCPU: Dual Intel Xeon E5-2603 v4Graphics: Nvidia GT 610RAM: 64GBStorage: 1TB HDDConnectivity: 2 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 23. 2 x 56 x 55. 9cmReasons to buy+Compact and quiet+Very powerfulReasons to avoid-Not the cheapest (but well-priced given its power)-Any other complaint would be nit-pickingA powerful server doesn’t have to be expensive – that’s essentially what Scan wants to convey to prospective customers. Specifically designed for the SMB market, this 3XS offering is engineered to be compact and as quiet as possible. The UK-based vendor provides real-time tracking at every stage of the server build process (the servers are built to order, and production includes a 24 hour burn test and 88 point QC check). Each comes with a three-year onsite warranty; what’s more, you get a free recovery USB stick with diagnostic that wasn’t enough, the components used in the system are amongst the best in our round-up. Two Broadwell-based Intel Xeon E5-2603 v4 processors provide a total of 12 cores and 30MB of cache. Then there’s 64GB of DDR4 ECC RAM from Samsung, a 1TB WD Enterprise-class hard disk drive, two Intel Gigabit Ethernet ports, a 1000W Gold PSU and support for eight hard disk drives. Built by Corsair, the case has a door and all the panels are lined with noise damping material. 10. Asus TS500A mainstream tower server with flexibility in spades SpecificationsCPU: Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3Graphics: N/ARAM: As orderedStorage: No Drives IncludedConnectivity: 8 x USB ports, VGA, PS2, 3 x Gigabit EthernetDimensions (W x D x H): 22 x 54. 5 x 45. 5cmReasons to buy+Perfect for server and workstation use+No shortage of power and flexibilityReasons to avoid-Not everyone will need all those features-Seeing the Asus label may surprise someLike Supermicro, Asus is not well known for its servers. Instead, the Taiwanese company, one of the biggest component vendors in the world, is popular for a wide range of consumer products including its motherboards. Its TS500-E8-PS4 is a mainstream pedestal 5U tower server perfectly built for both workstation and server dual features the latest Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v3 product families, eight DDR4 DIMMs (supporting half a terabyte of RAM), six expansion slots, three 5. 25-inch media bays and a single 500W 80 Plus Bronze power supply. There are four 3. 5-inch hot-swap SATA/SAS HDD bays which is also upgradable to eight HDD bays for flexible storage addition, with Intel’s Intelligent Platform Management Interface (IPMI) 2. 0-compliant ASMB8-iKVM module in the TS500 you’ll be able to monitor, control and manage the server remotely. Other key specs include 10 SATA ports, a DVD writer, eight USB ports, a PS2 port, a VGA one and three Gigabit Ethernet ports. Note that this is a barebones server, but obviously that gives you plenty of flexibility – something this machine offers in spades.
Managing Editor, TechRadar Pro
Désiré has been musing and writing about technology in a career spanning four decades. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global techfests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. He has an affinity for anything hardware and staunchly refuses to stop writing reviews of obscure products or cover niche B2B software-as-a-service providers.

Frequently Asked Questions about types of servers for small business

What types of servers are needed for a small business?

Types of servers for businessesSecure email hosting.Website hosting.Document storage.Ecommerce hosting.Hosting line-of-business applications.Data backup and recovery.Jun 29, 2020

Which server is best for business?

Dell PowerEdge T30. A Xeon dream with plentiful connectivity on offer. … Dell PowerEdge T20 [barebones] Shows you how cheap a barebones server can get. … Lenovo ThinkServer TS150. … HPE ProLiant ML350 Gen 10. … Fujitsu Primergy TX1310 M1. … HP Proliant Microserver Gen8. … Lenovo ThinkServer TS460. … HP ProLiant ML350 G9 5U.More items…•Jun 30, 2021

How do I choose a server?

6 Things to Consider When Selecting a Dedicated ServerDefine Performance Requirements. Each company has unique performance requirements for their servers. … Consider Potential Downtime. … Anticipate Bandwidth Usage. … Test Network Quality. … Consider Application Scalability. … Choose a Hosting Provider.Mar 2, 2020

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