Feeds

Function trumps form at Intel showcase

We muster an Itanic cluster or two

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Build a business case: developing custom apps

IDF Vendors showcasing their wares at this year's IDF checked all their glitzy booth adornments at the door, picking a plain and simple pitch instead.

For the most part, the IDF show floor was covered with drab, little vendor receptacles. Some companies like Nvidia managed to put up a flat panel or two to show off their graphics skills, but the average vendor could only muster a few press kits, some candy and a software demo. One hardware integrator simply had a server sitting on a chair with a robot disguised as a human saying: "This fits four Xeons."

Unlike other showcases such as CES or MacWorld, IDF proves that function trumps form in the land of the industry standard.

That said, some vendors' gear did manage to catch our eye and demand a trip around their booths.

Seamless

The folks over at Seamless Display have done a nice job with the Horizon 320. The product melds three 20-inch LCD screens into a massive 40-inch display. It's aimed at people doing a lot of design work, users creating large spreadsheets of data and those running simulators for things like pilot training.

At present, the display is a bit bulky and literally rough around the edges. There appeared to be dark areas at the seams of the connected displays. Seamless Display, however, is looking to slim the system down and give it a better, "seamless" final polish.

Blade

Silicon Mechanics was showing its line of Xeon-based servers. The Bladeform Blade Server Platform is essentially a rebadged version of the blade design created by Intel and IBM. The two giants partnered to create a type of white box blade standard. Dell is said to be picking up the design for a new blade line after struggling with its own gear.

Silicon Mechanics has both a two-way and a four-way blade available. As you would expect, the kit is not all that flashy but looks more than adequate to get grunt computing work done.

We chatted with the Silicon Mechanics crew for a bit and discussed the prospects of an Itanium-based blade. Our troubling consensus was that Itanium blades could well accelerate global warming. Chuckles all around.

Itanic servers

Celestica and Appro also put their servers on display. Both vendors have crammed two Itanics into a 1U system. If you want to do a bit of comparison shopping, check out Celestica's IYA210 here and Appro's 1224T here. Appro is also pushing a HyperBlade product that combines 17 Itanium servers into a mini-cluster or 80 servers in a full cluster.

All three of these server vendors also sell systems with AMD's Opteron chip.

Cluster

High performance computing fans might already know of Callident, but if you're not familiar with the company, you might want to check out their Linux cluster software.

Callident Rx is a tweaked version of the NPACI Rocks software built by the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC). The product automates much of the Linux cluster installation process. It also ships with a host of popular cluster and high performance computing software packages.

An Intel staffer demonstrating the software gave it high praise. Top on his list was the time Callident saved in a cluster install, reducing the process to a couple hours. The software works with both Xeon and Itanium servers.

Check out all of our IDF coverage here: IDF Spring '04
coverage in full
. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Sysadmin Day 2014: Quick, there's still time to get the beers in
He walked over the broken glass, killed the thugs... and er... reconnected the cables*
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
SHOCK and AWS: The fall of Amazon's deflationary cloud
Just as Jeff Bezos did to books and CDs, Amazon's rivals are now doing to it
VVOL update: Are any vendors NOT leaping into bed with VMware?
It's not yet been released but everyone thinks it's the dog's danglies
BlackBerry: Toss the server, mate... BES is in the CLOUD now
BlackBerry Enterprise Services takes aim at SMEs - but there's a catch
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.