Storage & NASHP ProLiant MicroServer USB 3.0 - Video Edition

HP ProLiant MicroServer USB 3.0 – Video Edition


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After the installation of Windows Home Server 2011 RTM on my HP ProLiant MicroServer I found myself wanting to add a USB 3.0 card to increase my off-site backup speeds. If you have a ProLiant MicroServer, or are thinking of buying one, check out our 17 minute video that completely tears it apart!

HP ProLiant MicroServer

This video will be of great help if you want to add or change memory, add an optical drive or install an expansion card. Thank you to Andrew Edney and John “Diehard” Zajdler for the motivation to get this video posted.

My HP ProLiant MicroServer is running Windows Home Server 2011 with one 250GB system drive and two 3TB drives in a Mirror configuration.

HP ProLiant MicroServer

My two 3TB drives settled in very nicely with the built-in Mirror with Windows Home Server 2011.

HP ProLiant MicroServer

There is also an eSATA connector on the back for expansion.

HP ProLiant MicroServer

HP ProLiant MicroServer Series

These little servers cost just over $300 and are a great value for anyone looking for new home for their Windows Home Server 2011.

HP ProLiant MicroServer

HP ProLiant MicroServer Video

Again, this video will be of great help if you want to add or change memory, add an optical drive or install an expansion card.

Lets see some video!

HP ProLiant MicroServer Video

The top and front of the HP ProLiant MicroServer come off easily without tools so adding a 5.25” device is easy and can be done in less than a minute!

HP ProLiant MicroServer

Check back with us to see more videos of the HP ProLiant MicroServer in action!

Timothy Daleo

Timothy Daleo
Timothy Daleo
Timothy Daleo is a Project Resource Analyst and Oracle Applications Trainer in Pasadena, California. In addition to financial analysis, Tim has been developing training materials since 2003 and supporting direct projects through various auxiliary databases since 2005.


  1. I wonder if this would make a good “upgrade” from the ex485 but still run WHSv1.


  2. I see this box does not meet WHS minimum requirements of 1.4 GHz processor. Are you confirming that WHS 2011 installs just fine?

  3. WHS2011 installs and runs just fine. The default drive setting is AHCI so make sure to switch the AHCI setting to IDE or add the drivers so the install will work.

      • Can you reconcile the HD BIOS setting to use if not using RAID (e.g. AHCI or IDE)? Nebrewfoz implies he installed WHS with no RAID and set up for AHCI in BIOS, while Britton Almy says the default drive setting is AHCI and should be changed to IDE or drivers should be added. To me these two are unclear – when does one use AHCI and when IDE?

        • AHCI can give you slight speed advantages and allows for hot swap. Try and use AHCI when possible. On older systems IDE (which does not require drivers) is a safer bet but you give up a small performance hit.

          • Thanks, Tim. I had the impression from those two posts that the choice was related to whether or not one used RAID, but now I see that if my BIOS will permit AHCI I should try it, with hopefully good results.

  4. I have mine set-up on WHS 2011 all works great, data migrated and even my main media centre pc pointing to it in full production mode. Just waiting to get the £100 cashback from HP.
    Like it so much that my mediasmart v1 box is powered down just in case and destined for ebay.

  5. hi, thank you for the video, extremely helpful. I just ordered my box plus 2hdds and 4Gb of RAM. I hear you changed or plan on changing the existing 250Gb with the optical drive. In your video you briefly mention the sata drive bay. I’d like to know which one you got that works for this system.

    thanks again.

  6. Tim, are you still happy with the performance.

    I use my WHS to archive recorded TV from a Windows 7 media center HTPC in the living room.

    I’m wondering how the performance is if you then rewatch (through the HTPC in living room) the recorded HD show that is archived to the WHS.

    Do you see any performance problems with the microserver?

    Thanks for your post.

    • I do not see any performance issues with the Microserver so far. Like you, I also record CableCARD programs at 1080 and archive them to the server. I then play them later across the network. I do not notice any stutter or performance issues. I have not tried multiple streams at the same time though so I will let you know if I have any issues.

      • Hi Tim,
        I know this is not the place to post this but can you tell me if you rip DVD and if yes what container and audio do you use.

        If theirs a better place for this and to find out what others are doing for rip, please post the link.

        Thank you

        • When I make backups of my DVDs, I use DVD Shrink and save them as Video and Audio TS. I like this format since I can still get to all of the menus from WMC. This is just how I do it but I know other users like Diehard use an uncompressed format while my fellow BYOB host Mike Faucher rips without any menus or subtitles.

  7. Hi!!! The 3 Terabytes HDD are still working? Witch HDD did you use? I found online that some 3TB HDD don’t work very well under this HP Microserver. If you tell us the model of you 3TB HDD we all gonna love-it!

  8. Hi!!! The 3 Terabytes HDD are still working? Witch HDD did you use? I found online that some 3TB HDD don’t work very well under this HP Microserver. If you tell us the model of you 3TB HDD we all gonna love-it!

    • I use both WD and Seagate 3TB drives. I have not had any issues with the drives sicne I installed them. They are around $120 now in the US.

  9. Tim, did you download and install any of the drivers available from HP for the Microserver? Or did you find the default drivers on the WHS 2011 DVD to be good enough? Device Manager doesn’t indicate that it’s missing something, but I just wondered whether I’d get any performance gain from the HP drivers.

    • I do not use any HP drivers with the Microserver. The WHS 2011 installation had everything I needed. I doubt you would see any performance gain with HP drivers and it could actually cause issues.

      • It could? Well, I applied the opposite “What could go wrong” approach, and actually installed the AMD chipset/display driver and the Broadcom NIC driver which I downloaded from HP. The display certainly works better with my wide screen monitor locally attached for a few more days, and the network performance certainly isn’t any lower than it was before the driver upgrade, although I can’t claim that it’s higher either. So, no issues detected.
        The only storage driver available from HP seemed to be meant for use during RAID installation, so I skipped that one. (Selected AHCI in BIOS and installed without a hitch.)

        • The HP monitor driver would work better since WHS is not designed for using a monitor full time. The rest of the drivers should not make a difference. Glad it worked out well.

  10. Great Video. Did you mention the brand of the PCI-e x1 card you installed? There is a HP USB 3.0 PCI-e card but HP servers are not listed in the compatible list. Can you give a real world indication of the transfer speed of this USB 3.0 setup. My experience is that USB 2.0 transfers at about 30-35 MB/sec and USB 3.0 100-120 MB/sec.

  11. I install WHS 2011 in my HP Microserver which contain 250Gb HDD in ODD port and two of 2TB hard disk in it racks. WHS 2011 only detect 250Gb but nothing on two of 2TB drives, I check the disk management still nothing. I change to IDE or AHCI. still not detected. Any suggest ?

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