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Recently i did bought an HP ProLiant DL180 G6

Everything is OK except fan noise , it's too loud. I did some research but found nothing useful , I just wanted to know if there is anything I can do about it?

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6  
Most rack servers are not designed to be in an office atmosphere, but a closed server room. Hence the noise and heat output. –  xeon Nov 14 '11 at 18:42

8 Answers 8

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Unbelievable...

I found the answer after a ton of research and comparing two HP Dl180 G6's, one with the fan noise issue and one without I discovered the problem.

So here is the issue.

On right hand side of the server behind the power button there is a temperature sensor. When the motherboard stops registering that temp it assumes the incoming air is hotter then acceptable and ramps up the fan noise to compensate. The really odd thing is that the absence of this sensor data doesn't raise any red flags in the system or ILO. It simply indicates no data for the front panel sensor.

When I swapped in the front panel from a known working server the problem went away. When I swapped in the bad sensor to a working server the problem followed the sensor to the new server.

The sensor is not a separate part number it is part of the drive bay.

I called HP and insisted they replace the drive bay so I could get a new sensor. The first drive bay they sent me was like for like, it was an 8 bay hotswap with the DVD-ROM drive. Part # 507305-001. I swapped that in and the problem remained it still wasn't registering the temp sensor.

I called HP and had them replace it again and again same problem.

Third call to HP I insisted they send me the drive bay for the 12 3.5 inch hotswap unit. This matched the working server that I owned. When I received it I carefully moved the power button assembly to my 8 bay unit and plugged it in. It was magic. When it rebooted ILO reported the following:

Generic 01/01/2002 00:02:14 FAN4_INLET Lower Critical-going low Assertion 
Generic 01/01/2002 00:03:34 FAN4_INLET Lower Critical-going low Assertion 

Fan noise returned to normal and when I checked ILO and IPMI data front panel was registering temp.

The part number for the 12 bay unit is 507254-001

The individual temp sensor didn't have any identifying marks on it and in all respects looked very similar. However there were some marked differences surrounding the temperature sensor chip. On the 8 bay unit it was covered in epoxy. On the 12 bay unit it was free and open.

My guess is this is a manufacturing defect.

I notified HP Engineering about the issue and provided them the same details as I am listing here.

I hope this helps someone out.

Good Luck.

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Excellent breakdown. I haven't had this issue on my DL180's, other than knowing that the cooling and fan solution isn't as polished as the higher-end 300 and 500-series servers. But this is helpful to know. –  ewwhite Nov 14 '12 at 10:38
    
Sir You Are A HERO –  Synxmax Nov 23 '12 at 17:55

The DLxxx series are rack servers: meant to be reliable, not quiet.

Make sure everything is installed, HP SUM (The 9.30 DVD is the latest as of writing this) should help with this, and that all the fans are working correctly. If that's all good, put it in the rack and close the door.

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I'll note that the G6 and G7 DL3xx systems are nearly silent in most situations now, depending on which PCI slots are populated and which BIOS settings are enabled. Working on a DL370 G6 this week, there's even a new BIOS switch that gives a choice between "Optimal Cooling", "Increased Cooling" and "Reduced Acoustics". The latter option was meant to help in office environments. –  ewwhite Nov 15 '11 at 13:28

Have you got the HP agents loaded for whatever the OS is? I think the HP agents control how the fans run, as well as the rest of the hardware. You may also want to check and make sure all of the fans are working properly.

In reference to Chris' comment the noise level is relative to what you're used to. They are rack mount servers so what you're hearing may just be the "normal" operating volume.

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Is it higher than 38 dBA LpAm when operating?

If not then it's within specs, if it is then call HP to fix.

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There are no specific HP Management agents for the DL180 G6 in terms of health agents. The fan speed may be stuck at its current rate. You can run a firmware update DVD to see if there's any difference upon updating the BIOS and/or the Lights-Out BMC. Otherwise, that's it for that model. The HP ProLiant 1xx-series do not have the same level of thermal/cooling/management features as the 3xx-series.

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I'm setting up a pair of DL180 G6 right now.

Worth to be mentionned: one of them initially (on the first boot) seemed much quieter, then the BMC/LO100 component somehow updated itself, showing an advancement percentage (like it was being flashed) and citing hardware changes or something as the reason for this. And thereafter, it was just as noisy as the other one.

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This thread has been running in various forms since before HP migrated their forums.

The BMC updating its self happens in response to the PCIe riser card being inserted or not, and if it's populated.

The DL180 G6 is nearly silent with the riser removed, with the fans dropping to around 2-3000 rpm. With a card installed the ILO update causes them to run nearer 5-12k and sound like a hurricane.

This issue has been reported to HP by numerious people but we have all recieved a stock response. Namely "your issue has been escallated to engineering." followed by "as it is not possible to measure the temperature of a 3rd party card installed on the pcie riser, this behaviour is by design."

See thread http://h30499.www3.hp.com/t5/ProLiant-Servers-ML-DL-SL/HP-DL-165-G6-very-noisy-fan-speed/td-p/4662576

An identical issue has been fixed for the ML350 G6 http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport/SoftwareDescription.jsp?lang=en&cc=us&prodTypeId=15351&prodSeriesId=3884315&swItem=MTX-d22d3ec5c39647bf872f34a076&prodNameId=3884316&swEnvOID=1005&swLang=13&taskId=135&mode=4&idx=3

Please make yourselves known to HP support. Hope this helps.

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I just wanted to add my two cents here..

I had the same EXACT problem. DL180 G6... loud fans (14000+ RPM on fans 3 and 4, 7000+ on fans 1 and 2). We changed out the drive bay (like mentioned in the "answer") but it did not resolve the problem.

We then replaced the following that resolved the problem: Spare part: 608865-001 Description: System-board. Qnty: 1

Spare part: 519199-001 Description: System fan. (Fans 3 and 4) Qnty: 2

Hope this helps someone out there!

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