Feeds

Sun talks two-wave server blade strategy

Gigabit Ethernet today, Infiniband blades tomorrow

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Sun has outlined its server blade strategy. It's more of a meta-strategy right now, with more "meta" than "strategy", But at least Sun's talking.

Product will appear in the second half of this year, in 5x densities, with 15 CPUs in a 3u rack. Sun's director of blades development, Colin Fowles, told us that anything that falls far short of RLX-type densities would be a waste of time. RLX squeezes as many as 24 CPUs into a 3u space, and recently offered Intel-based blades alongside its Crusoe-based offerings.

He heaped a bucket of scorn over HP's blade strategy: HP has an ambitious program based on Compact-PCI, but dense it ain't.

"HP's blades are far too big: with 16 blades in a 13u box. Compact PCI doesn't give you that density," says Fowles.

Sun's blade initiative is two-fold: "wave one" involves getting something out of the door this year, based on Gigabit Ethernet.

But Fowles doesn't think a market for "larger business blades," will be mature until 2004, by which time Sun will have Infiniband-based blades.

"We'll have Infiniband from the blades to switches, and from the switches to the SAN".

Sun doesn't say what processor it's chosen for Wave One, just yet.

UltraSPARC II?

"We could," says Fowles.

Jalapeno, aka UltraSPARCIIIi?

"I can't tell you that."

Hmmm.

Sun says there'll be a redundant shelf service processor with a CPU in the first wave of blades.

"It's not a spare blade, it's just a processor over and above a blade," says Fowles. "But it gives you flexibility in administering a shelf"

He adds that there'll be two Layer-2 switches, providing a separate Ethernet network for the NAS storage, and separating the blade-to-blade traffic.

This sounds like a cabling mess to us, but Fowles said reducing cabling is a priority. "Even RLX's cabling is a mess," said Fowles. RLX actually has a pretty neat connector that carries both power and I/O to the blade, and we can't see how an Ethernet tangle would look any prettier.

But Sun blades won't be a host for new management software. "We're not trying to create that," said Fowles, promising that the Sun blades will talk to HP OpenView and other management systems. RLX continues to set the pace however, adding a "Control Tower" management server to its range at the Intel Developer Forum this week. ®

Related Stories

Compaq rolls out first 'blade' servers
Crusoe blade server pioneer picks Intel
HP's Blade strategy isn't so dense

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Azure TITSUP caused by INFINITE LOOP
Fat fingered geo-block kept Aussies in the dark
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
You think the CLOUD's insecure? It's BETTER than UK.GOV's DATA CENTRES
We don't even know where some of them ARE – Maude
Cloud unicorns are extinct so DiData cloud mess was YOUR fault
Applications need to be built to handle TITSUP incidents
BOFH: WHERE did this 'fax-enabled' printer UPGRADE come from?
Don't worry about that cable, it's part of the config
Stop the IoT revolution! We need to figure out packet sizes first
Researchers test 802.15.4 and find we know nuh-think! about large scale sensor network ops
DEATH by COMMENTS: WordPress XSS vuln is BIGGEST for YEARS
Trio of XSS turns attackers into admins
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
How to determine if cloud backup is right for your servers
Two key factors, technical feasibility and TCO economics, that backup and IT operations managers should consider when assessing cloud backup.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.