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Businesses Are Switching To Blade Servers

IT executives are rapidly making the switch to blade servers, despite some concerns about potential operating costs and compatibility with existing legacy equipment, according to a survey conducted by InformationWeek Research and Microcast Communications.

Nearly 30% of the 1,300 technology professionals surveyed said their companies have already deployed blade servers, 12% plan initial deployments this year, while 25% will be evaluating blades for the first time. A full third of those surveyed, however, say they are not yet evaluating blades.

Maximizing the use of available floor space in data centers appears to the top reason many companies are moving to blade implementations. Nearly two-thirds of respondents said the top perceived benefit of blades is getting greater processing power within the same physical space currently occupied by traditional server implementations, while 58% said blades will let them reduce the current dimensions of their data centers.

Nearly half of those responding said blades provide easier scalability, 49% cited easier deployment, 39% lower operating costs, and 34% less power consumption.

But when asked to cite perceived deployment challenges, 41% of those surveyed indicated they're concerned about hidden operating costs, 37% worry the systems will result in a need for additional cooling systems, 36% are concerned about compatibility with legacy equipment, and a third have reliability fears.

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