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March 10, 2003 | Chris Dagdigian, one of The BioTeam's founders, explains why he thinks blade servers are being oversold.

"I'm sort of torn on blades. My biggest early-on problem was the cheesy 4200rpm laptop drives that they put on blades. Those just aren't fast enough for informatics applications where you're I/O-bound.

"Another problem is that ease of wiring [for blades] is a red herring. If you can't wire competently, you shouldn't be doing IT. [I also wonder] if the price premium you pay is worth the physical space savings and the ease of management, because the management software is a lot of the value that you're getting with an RLX or IBM or Dell blade.

"Super-small blades can't expand. You can't add a Fibre Channel card. The blades from IBM and Compaq and Dell are a little bit bigger and can take full-size drives and things like that, [but] in order to make them big enough to take full-size drives, they're getting densities that we can meet or beat with mass-market hardware.

"But we have to decide this each time for a customer because you might find the real estate space is so expensive that they have to go with blades."

—John Russell 


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