ClearCube dares HP with new PC blades

ClearCube Technology plans to launch two PC blade servers, in a bid to compete with Hewlett-Packard Co. for customers in finance, insurance, hospitals and the military.

Both blades will use Intel Corp. chips and will have enough power to run Microsoft Corp.’s pending Vista operating system, which has large processing requirements to support the translucent windows in its graphical interface.

The R1300 blade will use a dual-core Pentium 4 chip, while the R2200 uses a pair of Xeon chips based on Intel’s Irwindale design. ClearCube plans to upgrade the R2200 to Intel’s 65-nanometer Woodcrest design by the fourth quarter.

“We wait about a quarter to use the latest processors, because customers like to see the price point drop and a three- to six-month track record,” said Raj Shah, chief marketing officer of ClearCube, in Austin, Texas.

ClearCube’s customers use the servers as shared resources, accessing them through simple desktop “user ports” that host almost no processing power or storage.

That model allows IT administrators to keep tight control over the security and upgrades of a company’s computers, since the valuable chips and memory remain in locked computer closets, not on employees’ desktops or laptops.

Both the R1300 and R2200 are backward compatible with previous ClearCube products, so they will work with infrastructure including the chassis around the blade, the backside connector modules and the user ports on desktops.

That continuity of design also makes it easier to reallocate older resources to employees with less compute-intensive jobs, in a “waterfall” effect.

“If you had bought the 2.2GHz version two years ago, you would get a 3.8GHz machine now for your trader or engineer or military analyst who needs the latest speeds and feeds. But a medical administrator could hold onto his server for three or four years,” Shah said.

ClearCube users increasingly devote their new servers to shared workload models like virtualization, which allows as many as 10 different users to share a single blade, and like grid computing, which divides large computational loads into smaller chunks for many different computers to handle in parallel.

Whatever model they choose, shared computing is a better approach for business than clusters of individual PCs, Shah said.

“The PC was not designed to be a business computer; it was designed to be a personal computer. We just all ended up doing it this way,” he said.

“Twenty years from now, if someone tried to sell you something called a ‘box PC’ that sat on your desk and had less uptime and less security, would you buy it? Of course not.”

Both the R1300 and R2200 blade PC models start at US$1,799.

Would you recommend this article?


Thanks for taking the time to let us know what you think of this article!
We'd love to hear your opinion about this or any other story you read in our publication.

Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

Featured Download

Featured Articles

Empowering the hybrid workforce: how technology can build a better employee experience

Across the country, employees from organizations of all sizes expect flexibility...

What’s behind the best customer experience: How to make it real for your business

The best customer experience – the kind that builds businesses and...

Overcoming the obstacles to optimized operations

Network-driven optimization is a top priority for many Canadian business leaders...

Thriving amid Canada’s tech talent shortage

With today’s tight labour market, rising customer demands, fast-evolving cyber threats...

Staying protected and compliant in an evolving IT landscape

Canadian businesses have changed remarkably and quickly over the last few...

Related Tech News

Tech Jobs

Our experienced team of journalists and bloggers bring you engaging in-depth interviews, videos and content targeted to IT professionals and line-of-business executives.

Tech Companies Hiring Right Now