IBM on Tuesday rolled out a series of new Flex Systems that are designed to pack more computing power in tight data centers for cloud services.
The Flex Systems include updated virtualization software, software defined networking tools and management applications. The updates include three systems based on IBM's Power 7+ architecture and an x86 system dubbed the x222, which is designed for better utilization. IBM also upgraded its Flex System Manager software so infrastructure can be monitored and managed via iOS, Android and BlackBerry devices.
The systems are primarily being used by managed service providers aiming to deliver their own cloud and software as a service offerings. IBM's aim is to push cloud providers beyond the blade architecture.
Jeff Howard, vice president for PureFlex and Flex System at IBM, said the company focused on refining the connections within the integrated systems to get more throughput. "Enterprises and managed service providers are offering more cloud services," said Howard. "They need a way to consolidate yet leverage what they already have."
Among the Flex Systems being rolled out:
- Flex System x222 is an x86-based double density system that supports up to 2,800 Windows 7 user images on one chassis. The x222 starts at $6,669.
- Flex System p460 and p270, two Power 7+ systems aimed at large workloads and mid-sized businesses, respectively. The p460 starts at $32,307 and the p270 starts at $19,343.
- Flex System p260, an entry level Power 7+ system, that starts at $8,999.
- Flex System Manager, which can monitor infrastructure remotely and now supports System x HANA systems (right).
- Switches and fabrics to enable software defined networking operations including support for OpenFlow.
- The new Flex Systems will be largely available through IBM's channel partners.