IBM aims to gain share in Intel server space

IBM’s x360 server, is now shipping in the Middle East. Company strategists believe that it will offer a range of advantages for customers and for the company’s mission to ‘cause a lot of pain’ for its competitors in this market.

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By  Guy Mathew Published  February 11, 2002

IBM’s x360 server, the first to offer the IA 32 Xeon processor from Intel and Big Blue's Enterprise X-Architecture, is now shipping in the Middle East. Company strategists believe that it will offer a range of advantages for users and for the company’s mission to ‘cause a lot of pain’ for its competitors in this market.

Tikiri Wanduragala, senior server consultant, eServer xSeries EMEA, emphasised the importance of the x360 for IBM’s future plans in the market: “This is a game changing move. We are trying to do something no one else can copy, something unique to IBM.”

The key to the technology comes from its Enterprise X-Architecture which combined with Copper technology leveraged from mainframe systems, offers the ‘smallest and fastest package on the market’, according to IBM.

The x360 is a four-way server and is not scalable but there will soon be a version that will scale up to 16 processors using the same technology and software. Wandarugala added that while the processor technology from Intel was ‘climbing the food chain’ in terms of speed and power, the reliability had not been there until now.

“The flexibility of this system will allow companies to ‘pay as they grow’ rather than having to have excess capacity that they don’t use. You can add processing power as and when you need it. The Enterprise X-Architecture also brings server consolidation and physical partitioning to Intel servers for workload consolidation to support NT or Linux or different version of Windows,” added Wanduragala.

“IBM is famous for letting mainframe technology trickle down but this server takes that to the volume market straight away because we want to commoditise that market. If we do that we will be playing to our strengths because our competitors have to make the margin on the sale on day one, whereas we gain most of our revenues from Global Services so further downstream customers will be coming to us,” concluded Wanduragala.

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