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Dell Power Edge 2950 - Noise issue

Posted on 2010-11-09
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
I have a client that has a Dell Power Edge 2950. It needed some additional RAM some I added some. However ever since then the fans run on high all the time and makes a much loaded than normal noise. - any ideas as why?
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Question by:darracsgr
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Expert Comment

by:nlandas
ID: 34095409
You likely have a fan failing. That's what they do when they detect a bad fan. Is there an error condition on the LED diagnostics light or panel?
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nlandas earned 167 total points
ID: 34095423
Also, be sure to clean out the inside with canned air. We find a lot of dust buildup in our environment and it cakes onto the heatsinks.
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Author Comment

by:darracsgr
ID: 34095483
If I remove the failing fan would that solve the problem, or would the missing fan cause an issue.
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Assisted Solution

by:Darius Ghassem
Darius Ghassem earned 166 total points
ID: 34095596
The problem is that the case is not closed all the way there is a sensor most likely telling the system that the case is not fully closed this causing the fans to run on high to try to keep the server cool.

Check Dell Openmanage this will tell you if it is a hardware problem just the case not secure but I am 100% it is the case cover not secured properly
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Author Comment

by:darracsgr
ID: 34095903
used Dell openmanage and the only error is a RAID issue. I checked the case and all appears correct.
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Author Comment

by:darracsgr
ID: 34095975
Also the Ambient temp is 25C
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Expert Comment

by:PowerEdgeTech
ID: 34096064
How much RAM did you put in it?  The more RAM is installed, the faster the fans will spin because of the additional heat caused by the RAM.  I've seen it in 24-32GB configurations as a matter of course.  I've seen it with as little as 16GB as well, but that may be a firmware control issue (see next).

Some things to double-check:

- Check cover.  You have probably done this.  Fans will kick up when cover is off or not properly closed.  Take it off and try refitting.
- Check fans.  You have done this.  If there was a problem with a fan, it would show in the hardware logs and would show an error on the front LCD panel.
- Update BIOS and ESM/BMC.  ESM/BMC is what controls the fan speed.  Updates become available for the ESM that will optimize performance of a system and fix bugs.  If the system should be running its fans at a lower RPM, then the ESM updates are what will address it.  Update your BIOS first for proper support of the ESM, but having the ESM up to date will ensure the system is running as efficiently as possible.

If all is up to date (BIOS: 2.6.1 and ESM: 2.37), and other hardware issues have been checked above, then it is running at the speed designed for your configuration.
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Author Comment

by:darracsgr
ID: 34097393
I went from 4GB to 12GB. Tried to update esm/bmc and even though I specify 2008 64 bit I get a non 64 bit exe. (BIOS is upto date). any other ideas. Even if I remove the new RAM the speed does not change back to the way it was.
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Author Comment

by:darracsgr
ID: 34097719
I finally got the correct esm/bmc and it is upto date - no change
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Assisted Solution

by:PowerEdgeTech
PowerEdgeTech earned 167 total points
ID: 34099075
LCD panel is blue and nothing in the hardware logs in OpenManage?  Did you put the black cover (shroud) back in the server?  This channels the air from the fan line over the processor and memory slots.  If not in there, the system fans will kick up ... I would suspect, however, that it would also give you a message on the LCD or hardware logs ... but maybe not - check it.  Make sure it is seated securely and completely.
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Author Closing Comment

by:darracsgr
ID: 34099279
Thanks to everyone - I removed all the fans  - used canned air to clean everything and replaced the fans and now all is well. Thanks again
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