Archive for the 'DCS' Category

Dell for Web Development

The web dev. focussed team here at Dell have recently widened their web page offering to add some of the software and solutions work they are doing. Barton George has also recently published a 3-part glossary on all things, web/cloud related. It’s a pretty easy read and for those entering this arena for the first time, a useful cross check when playing cloud buzzword bingo.

Dell for Web Development

VIS from the top

Michael Dell recently spoke at the 2010 Gartner conference. One of the questions he was asked was about the evolutionary and revolutionary approaches to IT, most recently amplified by the cloud discussion. Michael nails it when discussing the Dell approach with our Data Center Solutions business, our PowerEdge C servers and the Virtual Integrated System aka VIS.

Link love: 5 Lessons from the cloud

My peer, Andy Rhodes, Director of Datacenter Solutions gave this presentation as a keynote at hostingcon here in Austin on Tuesday. Thanks to Barton George for the original link and summary.

Last weeks roundup

Yep, the Texas Rodeo has left town(literally it started leaving Monday), and so it’s time for a roundup. I don’t usually post link lists(yes, my old mainframe chums will smile quietly at that) but since I wasn’t at the Dell PowerEdge launch in San Fransico last week, I thought these links would both give a little more clarity as well as some perspective.

First up, at a corporate level, and as one of his last blog posts as principal IT adviser at Illuminata, Gordon Haff, wrote this blog post on the “Real Dell 2.0” and his thoughts on the general direction.

Next is a Server Watch overview of the product content and direction from Andy Patrizio, a senior editor at, the news service of

And then if the proof is in the pudding, here is a blog entry from Dave Graham, a Technical Consultant Cloud Customer Advocate with EMC Corporation, excitedly took delivery of a Dell PowerEdge C6100 the day after the announcement in San Francisco. You can see some pictures and an early write-up here on Dave’s blog, in an entry called “Something cloudy this way comes”.

Finally, I under played the importance of the partner side of the announcement, but then  what do you expect, I’m a product guy. Dells own Barton George, who was live blogging, tweeting, and on the Dell Yammer group live from the event, posted the following as part of his blog entry on the event.

The Cloud Partner Program Working with cloud ISVs we will be offering easy-to-buy and deploy cloud solutions and blueprints optimized for and validated on Dell platforms.  The first three partners we are announcing are Aster Data(providing web analytics), Canonical (offering an open source Infrastructure as a Service private cloud) and Greenplum(self-service data warehousing).   (On the Evolutionary cloud side we will continue to work with VMware and Microsoft  and stay tuned for news on what’s happening on the Windows Azure front :)

Dell, Cloud, and PowerEdge C

We have a raft of announcements coming out today, possibly the most significant amongst these are the new PowerEdge C-Series servers. More like custom build Data Center Solutions Servers, they feature and are power optimized for customers in HPC, Web 2.0, gaming, social networking, energy, SaaS providers and public and private cloud builders.

They are in three basic models:

  • PowerEdge C1100: high-memory, power-efficient, cluster-optimized compute node server
  • PowerEdge C2100: high performance data analytics, cloud compute platform and cloud storage server
  • PowerEdge C6100: 4-node cloud and cluster optimized shared infrastructure server

Perhaps significantly, one of the more important parts of this set of announcements are the turnkey cloud solutions comprised of pre-tested, pre-assembled and fully-supported hardware, software and services enabling customers easily and quickly to deploy and manage cloud infrastructures with confidence, taking much of the guesswork out of building and running efficient private and public clouds. This is a key theme of our “Efficient Enterprise” Strategy and best value solutions.

With no apologies to James Governor, would you like some meat for that burger? One of the first solutions will be a Dell Cloud solution for web applications. It’s a web application platform as a service (PaaS) solution, and is designed to address the key issues around web application development and deployment: unpredictable traffic, the fear of under-provisioning and migration from development to production. The solution will combine Dell cloud-optimized servers and services with fully-integrated Web application cloud software from Joyent.

More to come as today rolls on, but the formal press release for the cloud related announcements can be found here.

Nano, Nano – Serving you on 15-Watts

The Dell XS11-VX8 Server

The Dell XS11-VX8 Server

This is something I was asked about a few times at EMC World, power and form factors for servers. Here is the latest server from the Dell Data Center Solutions group (DCS). It’s only a little bigger than a disk drive, and you can get 252 servers in a 42U rack. While the form factor is interesting, very interesting, you need to think outside the “box” to get the true value.

It uses the Via Nano CPU, to deliver an incredibly low-power solution of 20-29 Watts/server when fully busy, and 15 Watts/server when the OS is idle. It includes enterprise features like 64-bit operating systems, 1-to-1 virtualization, and remote management via IPMI. What this does is turn the current server paradigm on it’s head. Instead of using more and more power hungry server chips that deliver more performance than you really need, which opens the gate for someone to tell you about server virtualization and consolidation to make the most of the power per watt, or cost of the server. The Dell XS11-VX8 just gives you “enough” performance, at a good price, and an effective price per watt. For those sensative to cross-charging, billing out IT services etc. it has another side effect of simplifying software licensing and allocation.

Over on the Direct2Dell blog community, Todd has written a post with some useful additional detail.

About & Contact

I'm Mark Cathcart, formally a Senior Distinguished Engineer, in Dells Software Group; before that Director of Systems Engineering in the Enterprise Solutions Group at Dell. Prior to that, I was IBM Distinguished Engineer and member of the IBM Academy of Technology. I am a Fellow of the British Computer Society ( I'm an information technology optimist.

I was a member of the Linux Foundation Core Infrastructure Initiative Steering committee. Read more about it here.

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