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RE: Blade Servers

From: Matthew Zito <>
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 2004 15:13:05 -0400
Message-ID: <>

So, the "domain" functionality can be very nice, but there are some = serious limitations with it. Notably, migrating CPUs around requires = "freezing" and "thawing" the domains to add processors and RAM - each = requiring roughly 30 seconds of downtime. On top of that, you are very = limited as to how you can assign processors to domains without creating = potential failure scenarios (where the failure of a CPU in one domain = takes out another domain as well). Also, the smallest partition you can = have is a single cpu/memory board - which is 4-processors, and you're = limited to 18 domains total across the whole system.

In terms of space, power, cooling, the e15k is a bear. The 15k needs 12 = 30A 208V circuits, 6 of them minimum for operation, takes up almost two = rack widths across, and two racks deep. All this for a maximum of 106 = processors. In comparison, you can put 168 Intel processors in one = standard 42U rack (using IBM blades), and the power utilization will = require 4 30A 208V circuits (with a lot of headroom!), 2 minimum for = operation. Each of these circuits, in a datacenter, is going to run you = roughly $3k/mo

Plus the cost difference, list - for a 72 processors e15k (that still = has all the heating,cooling, space requirements I described above), the = list price is $2.6m

>From IBM, the same config lists out at $650k in blades, including =
chassis, etc., and the space, power, etc. is a little over half the = amount described above. =20

I realize that money may not be an issue, but if you're building out = lots of small servers, the logic of using a huge Sun server and = partitioning it escapes me, I'm afraid.


-----Original Message-----
[]On Behalf Of Stephen.Lee_at_DTAG.Com Sent: Friday, April 09, 2004 2:47 PM
Subject: RE: Blade Servers

If you move into the more sophisticated servers, you get features like multiple, independently bootable "domains", where you can move CPU's = between
domains; and you see additional hardware robustness not present in = little

If money is no object, then recall IBM's TV commercial where the execs = walk
into the data center, and the room is empty except for the one IBM = server in
the corner? If money is no object, consider what you can run on a = single,
fully pumped up E15K. I can't see how going to blades is going to save space.

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Received on Fri Apr 09 2004 - 14:09:42 CDT

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