Blade Pioneer ClearCube Names New CEO

Carl Boisvert comes over from server vendor Stratus Technologies as ClearCube moves to enable more than one user on a single blade.

ClearCube Technology Inc., the pioneer in the PC blade space, has tapped an executive from server vendor Stratus Technologies Inc. as its next president and CEO.

The Austin, Texas, company on Monday named Carl Boisvert to its top positions. He replaces Mike Frost, who resigned from the posts in 2003.

ClearCube builds back-end blade computers that sit in a chassis, and each blade is connected to a keyboard, mouse and monitor on the users desktop. The blades are stored in 3U (5.25-inch-high) chassis, and each chassis can hold eight blades. An interface on the back of the chassis, called BackPack, supplies external connections for the blades, and the Command Port provides the connections to the users desktop.

The goal is to give users a full Windows experience but make it easier for administrators to manage, maintain and secure the computers.

ClearCube is the leader in the space that research firm International Data Corp. says could reach 4.4 million units shipped in three years. Hewlett-Packard Co. of Palo Alto, Calif., in December announced its intentions of getting into the space with its Consolidated Client Infrastructure. Those first products are scheduled to appear on the market next month.

"ClearCube represents the first real breakthrough in desktop computing in 20 years, and leading companies are already realizing dramatic improvements in security, manageability and operational costs through ClearCube," Boisvert said in a prepared statement.

Boisvert comes over from Maynard, Mass.-based Stratus, known for its line of fault-tolerant servers that run both Microsoft Corp.s Windows operating system and Linux. He also has held jobs with companies such as IBM, Cabletron Systems and Amdahl.

In recent months, ClearCube has worked to expand the capabilities of its technology. Last fall, the company announced that it was moving to enable more than one user on a single blade, enabling businesses to decrease the cost per blade. With a blade dedicated to a single user, the cost was $1,500 to $2,000 per seat, company officials said.

Enabling multiple users on a single blade cuts the price to less than $1,000 per seat, with the tradeoff of decreased performance. However, not all companies need the same high level of performance, they said. For small offices running only one application, the tradeoff can be worthwhile, they said.

In February, ClearCube announced an OEM partnership with IBM in which the Armonk, N.Y., company will market and distribute ClearCubes products in Japan.

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