The current interest in blade server technology should not be limited to the high-end corporate market, according to the chief technical officer of Fujitsu Siemens Computers.
Speaking exclusively to vnunet.com, Joseph Reger said resellers could be key to the technology making inroads into the SME market.
"For SMEs you can use a couple of blade servers and add some storage and tape drives all in a very small space," said Reger. "You could put a whole IT infrastructure in a rack."
Resellers could make a very powerful case for blade servers in the SME space, as they not only save on space but also cut down on power consumption by a factor of five, said Reger.
He added that the channel could add value by having the remote management software on the blade servers report any faults back to resellers, so new parts could be ready and fitted before the customer had noticed anything wrong.
The next generation of blade servers would be able to handle processor-intensive database applications and not just the web server and terminal server functions that have characterised present usage.
But some resellers question whether the technology is applicable in all cases. Roland Westlake, managing director of education reseller Links, believes that you would still need to have a lot of servers to make consolidation workable.
"If you have a small single server environment then it doesn't quite have the same obvious advantages that a bigger school or organisation where they want to keep things neat by putting everything in one cabinet," said Westlake.
"I don't think it is a question of it being easy, it is just a question of whether it is relevant or not in some cases."
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