Serves Them Right

DQI Bureau
New Update

Companies are waking up to the fact that increased performance and

utilization can help reduce the cost of operations. They also realize that

getting more work done with fewer servers lowers the cost and complexity of

managing the IT environment, ultimately making more funding available for

desperately-needed services that actually improve business.


However, issues such as large caches, out-of-order execution and speculative

pre-fetches persist. Throughput computing is designed to help resolve the above

divergent trends by providing higher amounts of delivered performance and

computational throughput while simplifying the data center.

In computing infrastructures where application and database life cycles play

a fundamental part in the selection of any server platform, there is a wide

spectrum of choices based on key criteria, beyond the price of hardware.

However, organizations are asking their IT executives to choose between vertical

scaling systems (those with more than eight processors) and horizontal scaling

systems (those with up to four processors). Often, IT executives are pressured

to treat this issue as a binary decision or a black-and-white choice. They pick

one system with little or no consideration for fundamental requirements of the

application or workloads.

It is important for companies to have an environment that has both vertical

scaling systems and horizontal scaling systems. The new commerce model created

by the straight through processing from pervasive computing devices to

large-scale disk storage pools requires the server platform to support a very

fast input/output (I/O) environment. Vertical scaling systems provide the IT

backbone for database and application processing. These workloads typically have

very long lifecycles and therefore need to be placed on platforms that will

sustain their growth or changing function needs. CIOs must be aware of the need

to maintain platform stability through long-term system upgrades that are timely

and non-disruptive.


Unlike choice, the scalability of an operating system is often taken for

granted because it is a non-entity in horizontal scaling systems. With effective

planning and utilization, CIOs can hope to achieve optimum utilization of


Consolidate and win

Today's business environment is characterized by global opportunities and

challenges. Quick identification of opportunities is critical to growth. The

answer to many of these challenges is "server consolidation". It is a

way to centralize business computing workloads to reduce cost, complexity and

management overheads.


2004: Servers

High on the Shopping List

commissioned an IDC survey

of 200 large enterprises in 2004. The CIOs were asked for the three

areas where they would be spending the most in the 04-05 fiscal. And

it came across as no surprise that for almost all the CIOs across

various verticals servers was among the top spending areas.
Overall Banking Insurance IT

& PC Server


ERP Applications




(Base: 178)

& PC Server


ERP Applications 10%

Services 10%

(Base: 21)


& PC Server


Other apps

like SCM, CRM etc.




(Base: 12)


& PC Server




Datacom & Communications


Services 11%

(Base: 18)


Recent studies show that IT costs increased by 220% from 1996 to 2001,

whereas between 1990 and 1995 these same costs increased by only 56% (Source:

ITG). Ongoing recurring costs represent at least 70% of Total Cost of Computing

(TCC) on a five-year basis, and the portion is expected to grow to nearly 90%in

two to three years (Source: Meta Group).

One major cause of this growth in IT costs is the growth in the number of

servers in companies. It is in this context, and within a competitive and

changing environment, that the need for server consolidation has arisen.

Four stages of server consolidation

There are four stages or types of server consolidation that customers are

implementing which offer a wide range of business value and varying degrees of

solution complexity and investment. The first stage is centralization, commonly

called data center consolidation. By relocating existing systems to fewer

numbers of IT sites, economies of scale can provide simplified management and

cost improvements.


The next step to IT optimization is physical consolidation, which consists of

replacing some numbers of smaller servers with fewer, and more powerful systems.

This consolidation, however, is achieved within the same architecture, such as

IBM Unix servers to bigger IBM Unix servers, Intel servers to super Intel

servers, and so on.



server market will grow at a CAGR of 3.8%

to be worth $60.8 bn in 2008

growth of the market for blade servers will be quick, raking

in $9 bn
in annual revenue by then. They will also form a

third of the total units shipped

servers will lead with almost 60% share

with revenues of $22.7 bn, while Linux-based

servers will have a 29% share with

$9.7 bn

Group foresees a faster growth for

Linux and sees it challenging Windows in 2005-06, after having given

Unix a run for its money this year.

The third and the fourth type of server consolidation-application

integration and data integration, can gain additional benefits. While these are

more often complex projects, they can provide significant RoI through

elimination of duplicate and inconsistent information, reduction of

architectures and vendors, reduction of number of applications and servers, and

simplification of system management and security.


With contributions from editorial advisors -Kapil Sood, Director,

Telecom, Sun Microsystem, and Jyothi Satyanathan, Country Manager,

eServer pSeries, IBM India

Consolidating for change


look at some of the common concerns of IT executives today.

  • How do I make business data available for analysis?
  • How can I better control costs?
  • How can I better support and manage my network?
  • How can I better integrate distributed applications and data?
  • How do I plan for disaster recovery?
  • How do I move from a Web presence to e-business, enabling my business

    applications and maintaining high availability/security?

The answer to all these questions is: server consolidation. It is an

enabling technology that:

  • Optimizes and simplifies existing IT infrastructure
  • Integrates existing architectures across applications/data
  • Provides a foundation for new solution investments
  • Aligns the IT infrastructure with current and future business requirements

    and goals