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Blades to replace our Domino hardware?

We are looking at a three-year plan for upgrading our hardware for our Lotus Domino environment. We have about 14 servers performing a multitude of functions -- some are Web servers, some are e-mail servers. We are wondering if a blade solution is appropriate vs. standard servers. Any comments?

We are looking at a three-year plan for upgrading our hardware for our Lotus Domino environment. We have about 14 servers performing a multitude of functions -- some are Web servers, some are e-mail servers. We are wondering if a blade solution is appropriate vs. standard servers. Any comments?
Blade servers have the benefit over standard PC servers in their flexibility to scale to suit your environmental requirements.

In the "old days" you had a requirement, and you planned your infrastructure around that requirement. That typically placed a new piece of hardware in your server room to suit that requirement today, without necessarily having the capacity to scale in the near future to meet new demand. And it typically wasn't inexpensive, especially if you had a requirement to scale quickly to meet that new demand. Blade servers do offer this flexibility.

There are loads of resources to help with your decision (SearchDataCenter.com, ZDNet, etc.) that can provide you with more detail and advice than a one-line answer. Vendor Web sites, such as IBM and Dell, also offer an array of resources that can help explain the benefits and advantages of a blade infrastructure.

Not being aware of your operating systems or existing hardware, and depending on your budget and requirements, I would also recommend you look at alternative systems to standard PC-based servers. It might be time to chat with your preferred supplier about some "big iron" to consolidate some of the tasks being performed by multiple separate systems. This, of course, can lead to some new questions regarding operating systems, existing in-house expertise and the requirement for new product/operating system training.

This was last published in April 2006

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