Unboxing an IBM System x3200 M3 Server

IBM System x3200 M3

Last December  2010, I was forced to request for a new server to replace our 5yr old IBM x225. I have some few problems with the old x255 server with its SCSI adaptor that’s why I bought a new IBM System x3200 M3. The IBM x System or x Series is very ideal for Small Medium Enterprises, because of its lower cost of ownership than its competitors. If I will describe my new server in two words… “reliable and affordable”.

IBM 3200

Comparing my old and new server, below is the comparative specification:

IBM x255 (2005)

2.8 Ghz Intel® Xeon® Processor MP Cache (max) 2MB L3

2GB  (4 x  512MB)  PC1600 DDR Chipkill™

Expansion Slots 6 Active PCI-X

2 x 32GB SCSI and 2 x 78GB SCSI Drive

Disk bays (total/hot-swap) 12/12 with optional 6-pack hot-swap hard disk drive kit

Maximum internal storage 1.76TB1

Ultra320 SCSI

Network Integrated 10/100/1000 Ethernet

Power supply (std/max) 370W 2/4 hot-swap (redundant at 110V and 220V)

Hot-swap components Power supply, fans, hard disk drives, PCI-X adapters

RAID support Optional

Internal tape drive Optional, fits full-high and half-high drives

PRICE: P 125,000.00 ++  or $ 2,976.00 (5 years ago)


IBM x3200 M3


Intel® Xeon® x3400 Series (quad-core)

2GB (2 x 1GB) DDR-3 ECC memory

1TB (4 x 3.5″ 256 GB) hot-swap SATA hard disk drives (HDDs)

Redundant Power Supplies


Dedicated slot for RAID-0, -1 controller protects data and leaves other valuable slots free

Integrated IMM with IPMI 2.0 support offers better control and manageability of your system

2 x Network Integrated 10/100/1000 Ethernet

No Floppy Drive (standard)


PRICE: P 86,000.00 ++ or  $ 2,047.00


IBM x3200 M3 PROS & CONS

IBM-System-x3200-vs-IBM-x255 Xeon



1. What I love about this baby is the cost. I was able to save a $ 1000 compared to IBM x255 when I bought 5 years ago.

2. Lighter in terms of weight.

3. Compatibility with other provider: Processor, SATA and Memory – these means, it will be easy for me to upgrade or replace this part.

4. IBM provides good customer support. There technical support called me right away when I emailed them  some of my problems with the installations.



1. No Floppy Drive- I know its already obsolete but a lot of  administrator are still using Windows 2003 server

2. I have encountered some issues with the SATA/SAS Controller during Windows 2003 installation.

3. You have to download the correct 174MB Server Guide before you can install your depends to your Operating System.

4. A bit bulky. The tower type IBM x3200 M3 covers more space than my old server.

UPDATES (11.30.2011): I was able to restore the IBM X225 and it will be celebrating it’s 6 year anniversary. 🙂

Jhong Medina

Hi, I'm Jhong Medina, I'm just your friendly neighborhood tech blogger :). Hope you can join the discussion by sharing your ideas below. Thank you for visiting.

More Posts - Website - Twitter - Facebook

Facebook Comments

4 thoughts on “Unboxing an IBM System x3200 M3 Server”

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.