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IBM offers blade server for the little guy

SMB offering targeted for a Q4 release

IBM Corp. is adding to its blade server line with an upcoming model targeted at small-to-medium-sized businesses.

The BladeCenter S system is packaged to include server, storage, input-output connections to a network and software integrated into a single chassis. IBM declined to provide pricing information but said it plans to begin shipping the product in the fourth quarter.

“BladeCenter S simplifies IT for our customers,” said Alex Yost, vice president and business line executive for IBM’s blade products. “Set up is three easy steps: Take it out of the box, plug it in and run the wizard to get it up and running, much like you might do a PC today.”

The new model is small enough to sit on a desktop, runs on standard 110- or 220-volt electrical current, requires no raised floor, and features simplified cabling compared to other servers, said Yost.

A BladeCenter S system can include up to six blade servers and will include software for running a typical office environment, such as antivirus protection, VOIP (Voice over IP) phone service, e-mail and file-print functions.