Dell has furthered its bid to shorten lead times for business customers buying equipment by capturing and reusing images of their hard drive configurations.
The direct PC vendor will use the images to help build and configure equipment faster than the current configure-to-order model which can take between seven and 12 days.
Richard Katusak, senior manager of Dell Plus marketing, said that by using Dell's so-called engineer-to-order model, customers will be able to configure their systems in real time via the internet, thereby slashing development time from seven days to 90 minutes. It will still take five days to manufacture the equipment, however.
The reduction in development time is achieved using Dell's library of engineering code that specifies various component configurations. The company's Image Management Services (IMS) will enable engineers to refer to customers' hard drive images to help them configure new systems. An image includes the operating system, drivers and customised software applications.
Dell will also be able to use the images to alert customers to upgrade components when vendors make revisions, for example.
"IMS enhances platform stability, and eases product deployment and hardware maintenance," said Katusak.
The service is currently being piloted in Europe and a formal launch in the region is expected in February of next year.
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