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Friday, November 10, 2006
IBM Revs Up Performance of x86 Servers With New Quad-Core Processors

IBM announced today that it is enhancing its line of x86 servers with the introduction of four, quad-core IBM systems and a new blade utilizing the quad-core Intel Xeon 5300 processor.

System x servers provide a whole new level of value for clients, delivering three to four times performance of systems that IBM offered less than 12 months ago, enhanced systems management capabilities, expanded memory and I/O. When combined with the built-in virtualization and power management from IBM, these new systems enable clients to consolidate applications onto fewer, more powerful servers and keep control over energy spending in the datacenter.

IBM's x3650 packs up to 33 percent more memory and I/O than Dell's PowerEdge 2950, which reduces communication bottlenecks and optimizes performance. Together, memory and I/O keep each processor fed with data so that compute workloads can be executed at top speeds on all four cores. The SPECint_rate benchmark comparing System x3650 with the quad core processors to the System x3650 with dual core processors reported a 64 percent performance improvement by the system with quad core processors, according to IBM.

To leverage the new performance capability of multicore servers, many customers will move to virtualization solutions to run multiple applications per server. The new System x servers support virtualization solutions such as VMWare, and come with virtualization sizing tools to make it even easier for clients to deploy virtualization in their environment. With the integration of IBM Virtualization Manager into new IBM Director 5.2, IBM enables clients to manage from a single console both physical and virtual machines for VMware, Microsoft Virtual Server, and Xen environments on IBM System x and BladeCenter.

IBM Director 5.2 systems management software also features easy express installation for small and medium businesses, better firmware and driver management.

System Details

- x3650: Business-critical application 2U, two socket rack server suitable for medium and large enterprises datacenter environments; Starting at U.S. $2,419.

- x3550: 1U, two socket rack server provides Application density for power managed data centers; suitable for medium and large enterprises datacenter environments; Starting at U.S. $2,369.

- x3500: Stable business-critical application two socket tower server; Starting at U.S. $ 2,189.

- x3400: Affordable performance for growing business; targeted for small and medium businesses, remote/branch offices or retail. Starting at U.S. $1,839.

- BladeCenter HS21: Delivers leadership performance efficiency in a smarter blade form factor; Starting at U.S. $3,049.

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