Compaq Computer Corp. on Wednesday announced plans to expand its software and hardware offerings as part of its vision to build an "adaptive infrastructure" that will enable businesses to rapidly deploy and more closely manage servers installed at remote locations.
The new software tools will debut early next year with Compaqs release of its previously announced ultra-dense server, known by the code-name Quickblade, according to company officials.
During a conference call on Wednesday hosted by Compaq Senior Vice President Mary McDowell, the computer maker spoke in broad terms about initiatives and offered few details, such as software pricing and hardware specifications.
McDowell, who serves as general manager of the Houston-based companys Industry Standard Server Group, said the announcement was designed to offer a blueprint of the software and hardware technologies the company plans to introduce to enable "anytime, anywhere management and adaptability."
In particular, she said, Compaqs latest initiative will ultimately boost the ability of computer system administrators to manage multiple servers not only in a single data centers, but potentially scattered in offices around the globe.
The use of remotely located servers will likely increase in coming years, McDowell said, as "data centers migrate to outlying areas with cheaper real estate."
"For businesses to thrive, IT cant just merely monitor the distributed infrastructure, it must control it," she said.
Overall, Compaqs initiative will focus on four areas, including virtual presence and control, offering secure access and control to compute, storage, and network resources, regardless of where those resources are located, and automated system provisioning, to enable the rapid deployment of systems, add/delete users and quickly bring systems online.
It also will include intelligent fault resilience, targeted at predicting, diagnosing, and responding immediately to prevent system failures, and dynamic resource scaling, to enable system managers to adjust system configurations to meet fluctuations in usage demands.
Compaqs new software tools will debut as part of it upcoming ProLiant BL server line—an ultra-dense system featuring a "blade" design—that company representatives said will be begin shipping in early 2002.
Blade systems, which first appeared on the market this year, reduce servers to little more than a processor and motherboard, enabling data centers to boost their rack-mounted server capacity with space-constrained data centers. In addition, blade systems are touted as being easier to deploy, scale up and manage.
Compaq offered no new details on its blade system during todays conference call, which came one day after Hewlett-Packard Co. detailed its blade system offering.
Although Compaq agreed to be acquired by HP in September, McDowell said the two companies continue to operate as competitors, and stressed that HPs blade plans would not have any bearing on Compaqs own initiatives, for now.
The controversial merger, supported by the top executives of both companies, may be derailed by a shareholder revolt led by the heirs of HPs co-founders, who last month publicly condemned the deal and said they would lobby stockholders to reject it. Even if the two companies win the support of their shareholders, the merger must still win the approval of government regulators