Intel ramps up e-business testing facilities

InfoWorld |  Hardware

INTEL ON MONDAY made public its Solutions Enabling Group (SEG) initiative, an ambitious program to help companies test their e-business networks and "help take the guesswork out of deploying new technology," according to Dan Russell, vice president of Intel's SEG.

Under the program, the SEG replicates a company's existing network in a lab environment, where tests can be performed or new technology can be installed without interruption to the real network. The SEG also allows companies to install new technology to their networks in a modular fashion, testing and installing new network components as needed, Russell said.

"I think modularity is the key here," Russell said. "The days of wholesale search and replace of a [network] environment are over. I don't think you'll see companies change their infrastructure entirely, moving forward. They will test [new network components] modularly, then add them in and then migrate their people on to them."

Greg Drew, CEO and founder of 800.com, a consumer electronics retail site based in Portland, Ore., is a recent alumnus of the SEG initiative. Looking to fortify 800.com's network before last year's holiday shopping season, Drew enlisted Intel's SEG.

"[The SEG] replicated our entire site and came back with a set of recommendations that helped us identify potential bottlenecks," Drew said. "We got a fresh set of eyes [to look at] our architecture. And there was no [network] shutdown. That was a huge value."

Intel is in the process of opening a number of new SEG labs in locations around the world, including Germany and India. The ribbon cutting for Intel's Santa Clara, Calif.-based SEG lab takes place Tuesday, according to Intel officials.

Intel has devoted more than 400 consultants to the SEG initiative.

Intel is targeting the SEG at Fortune 1000 companies, ISVs, and Internet companies, officials said. Fees for services vary, officials said.

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