Romancing the Data Center

HP, IBM, EDS aim to ease management.

Carly Fiorina

Hewlett-Packard Co., IBM and Electronic Data Systems Corp. are each developing products and strategies to ease the headaches of running a data center.

On the one-year anniversary of its acquisition of Compaq Computer Corp., HP officials here last week laid out their Adaptive Enterprise strategy. The initiative comprises the companys Darwin Reference Architecture framework, which includes updated management software, as well as services and products from such partners as BEA Systems Inc. and Microsoft Corp.

Company Chairman and CEO Carly Fiorina said the strategy, designed to integrate business processes and IT, is the same one the Palo Alto, Calif., company used as it absorbed Compaq.

"The reason we can speak with such confidence about [the initiatives offerings] is because we used them all," Fiorina said. "We are our own best proof point."

Adaptive Enterprise is the continuation of a push by HP to create virtual data centers where resources can be quickly adapted to changing business demands, officials said.

The move is similar to others by IBM, with its on-demand computing initiative, and Sun Microsystems Inc., with its N1 strategy.

HPs new management software includes its Virtual Server Environment and self-healing management software embedded in OpenView. The company also upgraded its ProLiant BL20p blade server with Intel Corp.s 3.06GHz Xeon processor.

IBM, of Armonk, N.Y., is now turning its attention to servers in its Unix line. IBM is putting the 1.5GHz and 1.7GHz, 64-bit Power4+ chips into its p690 server and ultradense p655 system, respectively, and the 1.5GHz chip into the p670.

EDS, for its part, last week packaged its consulting and integration services along with new technologies it had acquired for its hosting operation under the Agile Infrastructure banner.

Based on a partnership with Ejasent Inc., EDS, of Plano, Texas, introduced the ability to meter in real time the amount of processing power that is used by an application and allocate processing as the need arises.

Additional reporting by Paula Musich