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Dell to sell Brit firm's 'fastest in the world' HPC arrays

Deal inked, Xyratex gets chance to ride the elephant

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Dell is going to resell Xyratex ClusterStor high-performance computing arrays, which should be good news for the UK data-storage firm after its recent Q4 tumble on the back of crummy enterprise demand and tumbling disk drive sales.

ClusterStor is Xyratex's supercomputing and high-performance computing (HPC) storage array, billed as the fastest HPC array in the industry. There's background information here.

We learnt about the Dell deal from a Xyratex announcement, which said Xyratex would talk about it and other topics at the Supercomputing 2012 event in Salt Lake City this week.

Xyratex's canned statement read: "Xyratex today announced that its Xyratex ClusterStor family of integrated Lustre HPC data storage solutions are available through Dell. With Dell's significant footprint in the commercial sector, HPC customers will now be able to scale both storage performance and capacity while aggressively reducing space, power and administrative overhead."

This Dell reselling deal very good news for Xyratex, coming soon after Cray adopted the ClusterStor technology and its use in the Blue Waters supercomputer. Dell will ship ClusterStor systems later this year.

Dell, of course, has a strong presence in the HPC market, and sells plenty of its servers in the sector, as in the Cambridge supercomputer. Having the opportunity to sell storage arrays as well as servers will enable Dell to drive more HPC dollars into its coffers.

There are echoes in Dell's adoption of ClusterStor of NetApp's adoption, through acquisition, of the Engenio-based E-Series for its sales to HPC customers who don't find NetApp's ONTAP arrays as suitable as the E-Series for their data storage and access needs. The PowerVault, EqualLogic and Compellent arrays in Dell's storage arsenal are similarly outclassed in HPC terms by the ClusterStor.

The British company has also just inked a deal with HP, which will install ClusterStor at a US federal government site. ®

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