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IBM Exec Lays Out Intel Server, Blade Strategy

With the launch of a four-way Intel server that leverages a system architecture reminiscent of a mainframe, IBM is making a concerted effort to differentiate itself from rivals such as Hewlett-Packard and Dell. Tim Dougherty, director for eServer BladeCenter Systems for IBM's Systems and Technology Group, explained the company's Intel server strategy and relentless commitment to blade servers in an interview with CRN Editor In Chief Michael Vizard and Editor Heather Clancy.

CRN: In a nutshell, what is IBM's server strategy for competing against HP and Dell?

DOUGHERTY: Our big play is blades on one end and eServers at the high end. The squeeze in the middle is what has been the commoditized servers. If you compare a 1U server from Dell with one from IBM, you'll almost always find that we'll give you more DIMMs, more drives and innovation around vector cooling across the entire product line.

CRN: How does IBM's new four-way Intel server further that strategy?

DOUGHERTY: We think this is a trump card to play against HP. It uses mainframe technology to give us a significant advantage in the four-way space. We've spent $100 million developing the X3 architecture over a three-year period.

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