IBM introduces Web 2.0 server

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IBM has unveiled a new water-cooled server which it claims will convince Web 2.0 companies to ditch their army of commodity boxes.

The IBM System x iDataplex may sound like a throwback to the mainframe days: it can be fitted with water-cooling systems. But IBM claim the design is ideal for today's internet pioneers. Those water coolers can eliminate the need for additional, energy-hungry, air-cooling boxes.

The iDataplex uses 40 percent less power, while giving five times the compute power of the commodity servers that are commonly used by internet-based companies, IBM claimed. Web firms, such as Google, hitherto been reliant on commodity servers to power their services.

"IBM is making Web 2.0-style computing more efficient and commercialising it for Internet companies and other high performance segments like financial services and research,” said Bill Zeitler, senior vice president of IBM Systems and Technology Group.

The iDataplex server uses IBM’s blade server technology to double the number of systems that can run in a single IBM rack. It supports Novell’s Suse Linux Enterprise Server and Red Hat’s Enterprise Linux distribution along with the open source, cluster management system xCat.

Although iDataPlex will be available in the US and Canada in June, it should ship in Europe and Australia by the end of the year. IBM said that pricing would be on a bespoke basis, since the system would be custom built – a clear indication that the system will only appeal to a very specialised market.
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