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Review: Apple Xserve (2008) server

Apple's rackmount server now sports Intel quad-core Xeon processors inside its slim 1U package. The 2008 Edition of the Xserve has powerful options, but deploying the device into your network should be carefully planned.

Xserve (2.8GHz Quad-Core Xeon) (2008)

Apple's Xserve server Mac is powered by a four-core 2.8GHz Xeon processor by default, with build-to-order options for two four-core 2.8GHz Xeons or two four-core 3.0GHz Xeons.


The new Xserve is a very model of the modern Intel-based 1U server, with a few caveats. Configuration of the lights-out management needs to be refined, and its lack of a hardware RAID is a glaring omission. Most annoyances of past Xserves have been rectified, and the whole system ranks admirably among the finest of today’s systems.

Xserve G5

Apple took a pretty good server, the G4 Xserve, and made it even better. Although some problems remain, the Xserve G5 kicks butt effortlessly and looks good doing it.

3.5TB (SFP) Xserve RAID

The Xserve RAID is nearly perfect; for its price, there’s no better RAID available. When Apple releases its upcoming Xsan software, it’s going to be tough to find a better all-around package for building SANs (storage area networks) on a budget.