IBM Gives SMBs Fast Path To Virtualization

IBM continued to take aim at the virtual world with a trio of introductions this week the vendor says will help businesses improve their overall IT efficiencies and ultimately lower their cost.

The System p5 560Q midrange Linux server, the centerpiece of IBM's announcements, boasts a number of partitioning features businesses can use to consolidate server operations. including the ability to run multiple virtual machines on one server and the capability of running multiple partitions on each processor.

IBM also took the wraps off its IBM BladeCenter JS21 Web serving farm server, which can run up to 14 blades per ser system, and its Express solutions that begin with a single PowerPC processor blade or one unit rack.

IBM the Power5-processor-based p5 560Q server can run as many as 160 virtual system images at the same time. Through virtualization, companies can consolidate as many 320 Linux applications installed over 80 racks with 42 one-unit rack servers per rack into a single rack of five 560Q (16 core) servers running 320 virtualized server images. The net result: as much as an 80 percent savings in floor space.

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IBM also claims the p5 560Q server can perform simultaneous multithreading with up to 32 threads to support HPC (high-performance computing) or Web-tier clustered application. The vendor says the IBM p5 560Q server provides a scalable solution for companies that want the option to advance from 4 to 16 cores per system, and as many as 80 cored per rack.

All three new IBM server solutions work with Novell's new Integrated Stack for SUSE Linux Enterprise (ISSLE) for System p which provides small and midsize firms with a way to integrate Linux servers into a Windows environment by providing services to support file and print services, Web applications, and database functionality.

IBM says the IBM System p5 560Q will be available next Friday at list starting price of $43,800. The Web Serving farm server--a BladeCenter H chassis and 14 blades--will begin at $38,835. The System p5 505 is priced from $3,717.