Say what you like about HP’s basket case consumer PC and Tablet strategy, when it comes to servers, the company’s ducks remain in a row. As proof, take a look at the 2011 HP ProLiant MicroServer, which has been announced this week.

The chassis remains the same compact, 4-bay model treasured by many a home server enthusiast, but on the inside, the company have opted for a more powerful processor in the shape of the 1.5 GHz AMD Turion II Neo. That replaces the 1.3GHz AMD Athlon II Neo chip in last year’s model, giving the MicroServer a decent performance boost.

As predicted on this very site, HP have selected the MicroServer as their entry level Windows SBS 2011 Essentials server for small business, offering the operating system as a pre-installed option (there’s no Windows Home Server option on the cards, so you’ll have to do a WHS install yourself).

Stuffed with Microsoft’s small business operating system, expect to pay around $899 for the standard 4GB RAM model with 2 x 500GB hard drives. HP are also offering a cheaper 2GB RAM model with a 250GB hard drive for $349, which is the one to go for a Windows Home Server install – upgrade the RAM for a little extra headroom.

Here in Europe, HP have offered an ongoing £100 cashback deal on the MicroServer which has seen thousands of units flying off the shelves – no word on whether that will continue on the new model, but fingers crossed.

So, that’s a new HP ProLiant MicroServer, a replacement for one of our favourite small servers of the last 12 months – expandable, more powerful than ever and very attractively priced. No fire sale required.

More: HP