Dell launches vStart, preassembled data center gear

Dell rolled out vStart, preassembled data center racks that include servers, storage, cabling and management software ready out of the box.

Dell on Thursday rolled out vStart, preassembled data center racks that include servers, storage, cabling and management software ready out of the box.

Colin Fletcher, senior enterprise solutions manager at Dell, said the goal with vStart was to make "the acquisition and delivery of virtual infrastructure as close as we could to a consumer product unboxing."

I doubt you'll get the gadget lust with these racks---well some of you may---but the bottom line is that vStart is preassembled and just needs to be plugged in.

In the big picture, hardware vendors are looking to make virtualized infrastructure easier to set up. After all, the easier the data center overhaul is, the more likely customers will buy more gear.

IBM and Hewlett-Packard also have various flavors of preconfigured rack systems. HP has Factory Express, which preconfigures data center gear and an effort to assemble PODs. IBM has an effort called ServicePac, but that's focused on servers. The overall theme is that hardware vendors are trying to make installation easier and sell a full stack of gear.

Dell's vStart effort is supposed to enable an "IT generalist" to install data center gear. Dell does the racking and stacking before delivery.

Unlike your iPad, however, these vStart boxes are a bit more expensive. The v100 system is listed at $99,900 and the v200 is listed at $169,000. Those prices include gear, cabling, racks and services help to set up.

Here's a look at the configurations:

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