Veritas, Intel Team for Utility Computing

With the industry increasingly turning its attention to utility computing, Veritas Software Wednesday said it has agreed to bundle its OpForce brand of provisioning software with new server blade hardware from chipmaker Intel.

Utility computing — where customers pay for the computing power they use and nothing more — has become the rallying cry of late for companies looking to make money by shoring up the infrastructure of other businesses.

Veritas, along with IBM , Computer Associates and a cadre of other players has been leading the charge. In its latest bid to curry favor with customers, the Mountain View, Calif. company, known for its storage software, will bundle its OpForce software with Intel’s new server blade architecture, SBXL52, which provides two Intel Xeon processors per blade with a total of 14 blades per chassis.

Dubbed Intel Deployment Manager by Veritas OpForce, the fusion of software and hardware will grant customers using a variety of Intel server blade configurations the ability to farm out multiple servers at once, commonly known as server provisioning. This obviates the need for a system administrator to configure servers manually and one at a time, saving costs and time normally associated with managing the infrastructure in a data center.

“This is an Intel-specific version of OpForce,” Arya Barirani, director of platform and strategy for product marketing at Veritas, explained to “This creates a significant opportunity for Veritas and is strong endorsement for our automated systems. Intel doesn’t do this with everybody — they’re very possessive about their designs.”

Added Foroodan Memari, senior product market manager for Veritas OpForce: “This allows blade servers to increase server utilization. But the more servers that are introduced, the greater the potential for errors. This automation will also result in reduced operator errors.”

Intel, in the midst of its developer’s forum in San Jose, Calif., doesn’t craft blades per se, but it does farm out its blade design and architecture to original equipment manufacturers to build them.

Veritas acquired the OpForce brand when it acquired Jarevea Technologies late last year. The software, which pipes computing power to servers that need it, will serve as the engine for Intel-based blades.

The market for blade servers is nothing to yawn about, according to research firm IDC, which estimates worldwide blade server shipments will balloon 342 percent between 2002 and 2003. IDC said that 35 percent of all servers sold in the United States to be blade form factors, snowballing to a $6 billion market by 2007.

Intel plans to release a four-way Intel Xeon processor MP-based blade, code-named “McCarran,” later this year. Meanwhile, Veritas executives said the public can expect an improved enterprise version of Veritas OpForce later in the year.

Others weigh in

Enterprise Storage Group analyst Steve Kenniston discussed the play with

“I think it is a pretty big deal for Veritas. IBM has their blade server solution and they own both the hardware and software. Sun has the same thing. Veritas was going to be left in the cold as they had no hardware to do the bundle with,” Kenniston said. “Now they have the largest chip producer in the world saying, ‘we consider this software strategic to a blade solution so it gives Veritas a good deal of credibility.

But current server blade leader HP wasn’t so impressed by the news.

James Mouton, vice president of HP’s Industry Standard Servers Platform division said two vendors and a partnership does not equate to a standard.

“”What was announced today was two products,” Mouton said in a note to the press. “While it’s possible to throw together hardware, software and manageability tools from multiple vendors to provide a blade server offering, we believe customers will want to lean
on a trusted and established vendor who not only provides a well integrated
blade solution but also comprehends the rest of their computing needs and
can provide the broad spectrum of products and services that can ensure
that they achieve their business objectives.”

News Around the Web