HP Proliant ML350e Gen8 Server has no SmartStart CD

With all HP Servers there would be a SmartStart CD that ship with the server. So you will unpack the server, complete the hardware configuration and then boot from the SmartStart CD. Once booted from the SmartStart CD, you will create your array configuration and then install your Operating System.

I received a HP ML350e Gen8 server that I need to configure and install for a client. I opened the box and was surprised not to find a SmartStart CD. The only CD in the box is a HP Documents CD with HP Support Documents on it. I could not understand how HP could forget to give me a SmartStart CD.

I decided to have a quick look at the HP Documents CD to try and figure out what is going on. On the CD I found a document called “Setup Poster” and this is where I found the answer.

HP went one step further with their 8th Generation Proliant Servers. The SmartStart CD is now integrated in the boot process so there is more CD to boot from. HP calls this the Intelligent Provisioning.

Here are the steps I took:


  1. Booted the HP ML350e Gen8.
  2. Halfway through the boot cycle there will be an option to press F10 to access Intelligent Provisioning.
  3. When the application has loaded, complete Step 1 and Set Intelligent Provisioning Preference.
  4. Then on the Home Screen, click Performance Maintenance.
  5. In the Performance Maintenance you can complete the Software Update and Firmware Update.
  6. You also need to open the Array Configuration Utility and setup your Array Configuration.
  7. Then go back to the Home Screen and click on Configure and Install.
  8. Once in the Configuration and Install screen, follow the prompts and select the Operating System that you want to install.
  9. You will be asked to insert the Operating System disk that you want to install.
  10. Now you will go through the process of installing the Operating System and configure your server.

The Intelligent Provisioning is a very helpful and easy application to use and with the fact that it is built into the server BIOS makes for much easier usage. The HP Proliant ML350e G8 and all other new Generation 8 Proliant Server use the Intelligent Provisioning. Well done HP!

Here is the Setup Poster as per the HP Document CD.

HP Proliant ML350e Gen8 Server has no SmartStart CD

Hi, my name is Jeanne De Villiers. I am an IT Professional with 15 years experience and also co-owner of an IT company. We provide network and IT infra- structure design services. As a part time hobby I'm doing some Internet Marketing and website design.

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