HDS Unveils Intel E5-2600-Based Server Line, Plans Tie To Storage Business

The new Hitachi Compute Blade 500 from HDS, better known in the U.S. as an enterprise storage vendor, is targeting virtualized infrastructures and cloud applications, said Nick Winkworth, senior product marketing manager for the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company.

The Hitachi Compute Blade 500 is a new chassis and blade server line based on the Intel Xeon E5-2600 processor that was released early last month, Winkworth said.

[Related: Intel Xeon E5-2600: Server Vendors, Others Roll Out Red Carpet ]

"At the same time, it carries forward many HDS storage features including logical partitioning, high availability, n+m cold failover, and built-in fabric switching," Winkworth said. "It's really pulling a lot of new technologies together."

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With n+m cold failover, if a server blade were to fail, its server image could be moved to a cold blade, or one that is not normally powered up, either in the same or a different chassis and be up and running in a few minutes, Winkworth said.

With fabric switching, customers of the new servers can easily choose between pure IP, pure Fibre Channel, or Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) as their connectivity option, he said.

The Hitachi Compute Blade 500 features a 6U chassis in which up to eight server blades can be mounted horizontally, Winkworth said. Each blade currently includes two processors, although future versions may include more, he said.

"Customers will be able to optimize the servers for more processing, I/O, and storage with enhancements coming over the year," he said. "We will also announce converged infrastructure solutions over the year."

HDS has been in the U.S. server market for only about a year, Winkworth said.

"Our strategy is to leverage our servers in the storage market," he said. "Instead of competing head-to-head with IBM and HP, which is not a good idea, we'll use our existing storage market."

HDS is one of the last server vendors to outline its server plans. Most server vendors including Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Dell, and Cisco introduced their new E5-2600-based servers last month.

About 42 percent of HDS' server business is indirect, Winkworth said. "This is an area that's going to grow," he said. "It's consistent with our overall channel mix."