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IBM soups up several servers

Feb 25, 20033 mins

* Big Blue continues to improve server line

IBM made a slew of server announcements last week that involve processor upgrades to its xSeries servers, faster pSeries servers, and new power supply options for telecommunications and carrier customers.

The eServer xSeries 205, which uses a single Intel Pentium 4 processor, is now available at 2.67 GHz or 2.8 GHz. It features 512K bytes of L2 cache and a 533-MHz front-side bus for faster operations. Users can choose a 1.8-GHz Intel Celeron processor-based xSeries 205 if their processing needs don’t require the heft of Intel’s Pentium 4.

The xSeries 205 also includes as much as 256M bytes of system memory and ATA or Ultra160 SCSI controllers for storage. It is available either in a rack-mountable version or as a tower. The server features five PCI slots, an integrated Gigabit Ethernet adapter and management features that let users diagnose problems quickly.

For instance, the xSeries 205 alerts a network administrator to problems, has automatic system restart capabilities for when the operating system fails, and enables memory, thermal and voltage fault monitoring. IBM Director software is included with the server.

IBM also introduced the eServer xSeries 235 server, which features an Intel Xeon processor operating at 2.67 GHz or 2.8 GHz, redundant hot-swappable power supplies and an Ultra320 SCSI controller with dual channels for connection of as much as 1.3 terabytes of hot-swappable external storage. The xSeries 235 supports as much as 12G bytes of system memory and has an integrated Gigabit Ethernet adapter. It is available in a 5U rack-mount or pedestal configuration.

The server can be expanded to two processors. It is also the first of IBM’s xSeries servers to offer integrated RAID-1 capability, which lets customers’ mirror hard disk drives for fault-tolerance and data protection.

The company also unveiled servers suitable for telecommunications customers – the xSeries 305 and 335 DC power models are 1U rack-mounted servers that operate at 2.4 GHz, have 512K bytes of L2 cache and as much as 256M bytes of system memory. Both the 305 and 335 have Ultra160 SCSI adapters for connection to storage, as well as a 36.4G-byte SCSI hard drive.

They use DC autosensing power supplies, support Linux and Windows and use Intel Xeon processors.

In addition, IBM’s 16-way xSeries 440 has been upgraded to 2.0 GHz Intel Xeon MP processors, for use with business-critical applications. IBM also enhanced its pSeries models 6E4 and 6C4.

The new one- to four-way 6E4 and 6C4 include faster POWER4+ processors operating at 1.45 GHz and 8M bytes of L3 cache. They can run AIX or Linux.

The x205 starts at $725; the x235 starts at $1,870. The x305 starts at $1,609; the x335 starts at $2,270; a 16-way x440 starts at $81,332. The pSeries POWER4+ servers range in price from $19,025 to $48,450. All servers are available now.