But Butler report warns users to beware IT vendors touting big 'one-off' projects...Users could save up to 25 per cent through server and storage consolidation strategies, but vendors are failing to meet their needs, according to a survey by analyst firm Butler Group. The report, 'Server and Storage Consolidation – optimising IT infrastructure to meet the demands of the enterprise', claims vendors are offering services that suit only their own requirements. Mark Blowers, senior research analyst at Butler Group, said in the report that the adoption of a distributed computing environment focusing on a one-server, one-application strategy has led to a costly infrastructure to manage. "This complex and often heterogeneous environment is very difficult and expensive to manage, leading to escalating operational costs, inflexible infrastructure, ever increasing difficulties in meeting service levels, and erratic data security and integrity." Server and storage consolidation and a more centralised infrastructure mean a reduction in system overheads, easier data management and a simpler infrastructure and can lead to operational cost savings of between 15 and 25 per cent, claims the report. But Blowers warned in the report that users must embark on consolidation strategies with a degree of caution because of the major impact they can have on the IT infrastructure. He said: "Consolidation is not always about moving to one big system, but instead must be focussed on adopting a balanced approach and evolving to a centrally managed, optimised, and flexible IT environment." The report criticises IT vendors for pitching consolidation as large one-off projects and says system assessment and planning should be integrated into ongoing procedures.