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Power and floor space are new drivers for convergence
Alan Waite 270005MYXE firstname.lastname@example.org | | Tags:  optimise_your_business_it techology optimise servers ibm blade infrastructure power alan waite
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If you're like most small-medium sized businesses today, your server infrastructure has been built up over time based on specific business requirements. This steady build has created hefty server needs for your business which are just a fact of life.
Yet looking at your islands of IT infrastructure, too many of your servers are sitting there at only 20-30% utilisation while your server sprawl goes on. And you're spending too much of your IT budget just managing server sprawl rather than innovating for the future.
Of course, IT managers everywhere have to do less with more. You're being charged with the responsibility of increasing server performance and availability while minimising its size, cost and complexity. What's more, your server sprawl is sucking up more power while taking over more valuable real estate. So these days you're having to factor power and floor space into the equation too. Yet it's all too sobering to think that maintenance along with power and cooling now accounts for about 75 cents in every dollar you spend on your server infrastructure.
Blade servers consolidate power and system level functions into a single, integrated chassis. This allows you to pack a whole lot of power into a much smaller space.
But they are not simply just a new way to package traditional computing components.
Optimised to minimise the use of physical space and energy, blade server technology greatly increases server density when compared to conventional rack servers. It also simplifies cabling, lowers power consumption and cooling costs, eases server expansion, and simplifies management.
With a blade system, you have three parts: one, the blade server; two, the chassis; and three, the switches or communication devices. The chassis houses the blade servers, communications devices and provides power and cooling.
The chassis pools, shares, and optimises power and cooling across all the blades so that more blades can fit into a typical rack space. Since fewer fans and other components are required per server, you can pack a lot more in.
Another not insignificant benefit is installation. While not so long ago, installing a server was a multi-day chore with substantial cabling requirements. Now with blade server technology, adding another is just a matter of inserting an easy to install blade into the chassis.