Dell is preparing to push rack density and server modularity to the extreme with its new blade and brick server architecture models, according to executives I spoke with at Dells Enterprise Day, in Austin, Texas, last month.
Blade servers, often referred to as ultradense servers, put the power of a server onto compact blade units, which are easy on the electricity bill and pack a higher CPU density per rack than is possible using conventional rack-mounted servers. A shared chassis provides the power for the blade units, and IT managers can easily increase the CPU density by adding blade units to the chassis. Blade servers arent expected from Dell until next year.
Brick servers are modular servers to be built on Intels McKinley IA-64 processor architecture and a switched I/O fabric. Dell is considering using InfiniBand or possibly 10 Gigabit Ethernet within its switched I/O fabric.
Depending on the ship date of the McKinley processor and the development of next-generation I/O technologies, IT managers may have to wait a few more years for brick servers to ship.