Tuesday, 22 January 2008 08:58

Dell says PowerEdge has the edge on competition

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Dell claims its new PowerEdge M1000e blade server provides industry-leading performance per watt and installation times.

Rapid installation - 13 times faster than competing products, according to Stephen Hensworth, PowerEdge marketing manager for Australia and New Zealand - comes from Dell's practice of delivering fully assembled and tested units. Most other vendors still ship blade servers as a collection of subsystems (chassis, blades, hard drives, etc) that must be pieced together by the customer, he said.

Power consumption and cooling are significant issues for data centre managers, and Hensworth says Dell has made the M1000e "as energy efficient as possible," to the extent that four chassis can be installed in one rack compared with three from other vendors.

The $A7222 chassis takes up to 16 blades, and is optimised for the M600 and M605 (starting at $A1849 each).

"The PowerEdge M-Series consumes up to 19 percent less power and achieves up to 25 percent better performance per watt than the HP BladeSystem c-Class'" said Dell officials. "Compared to the IBM BladeCenter H, the M-Series consumes 12 percent less energy and achieves up to 28 percent better performance per watt."

Hensworth explains this is achieved in part through efficient power supplies and fans, and with power management software that can watch the processor load and put PSUs into an idle state where possible.

The M1000e is so power efficient that the chassis pays for itself within three years just through electricity savings, Hensworth said.

Connectivity options include a Dell Ethernet blade switch, Cisco Ethernet switches (with an Infiniband switch to come) and Brocade 4G Fibre Channel devices for connection to an FC4 switch or a port aggregator.

An early adopter is the Queensland University of Technology.

"Our decision to acquire the new Dell infrastructure was due to its improved integration with the VMWare virtualisation software, providing more effective utilisation of resources, improved modularisation that results in reduced cabling infrastructure within the blade environment and a higher speed backplane that improves I/O responses, thereby giving better response times to applications running in the virtual environment," said Graham Keys, director of Information Technology Services. "The new Dell blades also provide a more 'environmentally friendly' solution than any of the non-blade counterparts, without compromising performance."

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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