The company announced Nov. 9 that it will start taking orders for four x86 servers and one blade system that will use Intels upcoming Xeon 5300 quad-core processor.
IBM, based in Armonk, N.Y., is the second OEM to introduce servers based on the forthcoming Intel quad-core processor this week. On Nov. 8, Dell announced that it would introduce several two-socket servers that are quad-core ready.
IBM officials said that customers could start ordering the new quad-core servers on Nov. 14, and shipments would start in December and January.
The new servers include three two-socket enterprise-class models, the x3650, x3550 and the x3500. IBM also introduced the x3400, a server geared toward SMBs (small and midsize businesses), as well as the BladeCenter HS21.
These four standard servers and the blade offer three to four times the performance of previous models with dual-core chips IBM has rolled out during the past year, according to the company.
For example, IBMs x3650 server with the quad-core processor offered 64 percent better performance than the older model with the dual-core processor, company officials said.
With the servers quad-core capabilities, enhanced systems management software, expanded memory and upgraded I/O, IBM has developed machines that it claims will take full advantage of virtualization in the data center.
"The introduction of quad-core processors to the industry further drives the need for innovative server designs so that clients can take full advantage of the new capability, and at the same time its also accelerating the need for clients to virtualize their infrastructure to simplify and get the most out of these systems," Jim Gargan, vice president and business line executive for IBMs System x, said in a statement.
In addition to the servers, IBM said it would integrate its Virtualization Manager into the IBM Director 5.2, its systems management software. This will allow users to control virtual and physical machines using either VMware, Microsofts Virtual Server and Xen.
The servers start at $1,839 for the lower-end x3400 and increase to $2,419 for the x3650. The quad-core based server starts at $3,049, according to IBM.