Dell rolls out servers, software, and services

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NEW YORK -- Dell Computer, the original build-to-order PC manufacturer and a believer in a three-tier network architecture model, on Tuesday announced plans to add new servers to each of those tiers during the next several months, Dell officials said at a press conference here.

In addition to expanding the company's server offerings in each of the three network tiers, which are Web servers, application servers, and database servers, Dell officials announced an improved version of Dell's OpenManage software, OpenManage 6.0, as well as a broadening of service and consulting offerings.

For the Web server tier, Dell introduced two rack-mounted two-way Intel-based servers, the PowerApp 110 and PowerApp 120. The first 2-way servers of their kind for Dell, model 110 is intended to provide "cost effectiveness" while model 120 will target the "high performance" market, according to Gene Austin, vice president of worldwide marketing for Round Rock, Texas-based Dell. Pricing for the two PowerApp servers will be made available when the systems are offered for sale in January.

Filling out the application server tier, Dell in February will begin offering its PowerEdge 350 server. A 1U (1.75 inch) high, rack-mounted server, the PowerEdge 350 is meant for infrastructure deployments and will list for $1,499. Prior to that, Dell in January will begin shipping a PowerEdge 1550 server. Also an 1U server, the PowerEdge 1550 is intended to provide high performance and is the first Dell server powered by a 1GHz Intel processor, Austin said. The 1550 will retail at $2,599.

To fill the database needs of its customers who prefer to "scale in" with a large server box rather than "scale out" with smaller, modular servers, Dell will repackage a 32-processor server from Blue Bell, Pa.-based Unisys.

Known to Unisys customers as the Unisys ES-7000, the server will be re-branded as the Dell 32-way PowerEdge server and is set to arrive early next year, according to Austin.

"We believe that scaling out is the way to go, but some customers want to scale in, and we don't want those customers going somewhere else," Austin said.

Unisys and Dell have engaged in service relationships in the past, but Tuesday's announcement represents the first product relationship between the two companies.

"We could have built it ourselves," said Austin of the 32-way server, "but to deploy a 32-way server is a significant R&D expense, and we can deliver the product at 20 to 30 percent the cost [if we use Unisys]."

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