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IBM Teases Server Industry with Talk of "Open Blades"
Build Your Own Blade Server?

IBM server folks and Intel's board people seem to have remembered that they have a two-year-old blade alliance that hasn't been getting much exercise lately so IBM decided it was time to make the design specifications for its BladeCenter platform available to other more or less second-tier hardware guys in the name of developing a wider ecosystem and of course selling more BladeCenters.

IBM needs to get past the early adopters and IDC thinks blades will account for close to a third of the servers sold in a few years.

IBM wants third parties to make network switches, adapter cards and blades that are compatible with BladeCenter. IBM has in mind specialized third-party appliance and communications blades for enterprise networks.

Because of what's on offer, BladeCenter still resists the adjective "open" and remains, as Illuminata once called it, a "house standard." Low-cost cloners are not invited. Management software software will remain proprietary.

Illuminata's Gordon Haff says participants aren't guaranteed interoperability.

IBM and Intel are promising technical support including design guidelines and hands-on fee-based help from IBM's Engineering & Technology Services unit. The specs, which cover the telecom-oriented BladeCenterT, are royalty-free.

About Maureen O'Gara
Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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Reader Feedback: Page 1 of 1

Well this does seem to open up a new market for clone blade servers, but I'm just not sure who would actually purchase one. Chances are, if you're going to be spending that kind of money on a server, you're probably going to want something from a reputed vendor, with good support, etc.




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