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RLX Releases Fourth-Generation ServerBlade, Control Tower

By Amy Newman (Send Email)
Posted Sep 17, 2002


RLX Technologies Monday presented its fourth-generation ServerBlade and Control Tower offering along with a variety of new clustering solutions and a Control Tower plugin. RLX Technologies Monday presented its fourth-generation ServerBlade and Control Tower offering along with a variety of new clustering solutions and a Control Tower plugin.

The RLX ServerBlade 1200i will feature a single, powerful Intel Pentium III Processor, up to two 60-GB drives, and up to 2 GB of fast DDR memory. With this speed bump, RLX aims to offer enterprises improved speed through faster processor performance, increased memory, and expanded storage capacity.

The RLX ServerBlade 1200i offers a 50 percent improvement in processor speed and storage capacity and a 100 percent improvement in memory capacity over RLX ServerBlade 800i, released in March 2002, Kim Elsey, Platform Marketing Manager, told ServerWatch. RLX will continue to sell and support the 800i, and has built the blades so that they can run within the same chassis.

Twelve RLX 1200i blade servers can be housed in the RLX 300ex chassis, offering a total of 168 servers (compared with 42 1U servers) in an industry-standard 42U rack.

The RLX ServerBlade 1200i supports Linux 7.2 or 7.3, Windows 2000 Server, or Windows 2000 Advanced Server. The RLX 1200i will run all applications that demand processor power in excess of one GHz to run efficiently.

Despite these enhancements, it is RLX's Control Tower that has really been transformed. Control Tower is RLX's blade server management software. It requires at least one dedicated blade, which is capable of managing hundreds of blade servers at a time.

John Schmitz, Control Tower Marketing Manager for RLX, told ServerWatch that new versions of Control Tower come out on a quarterly basis, the previous version having been released in June. One year of free upgrades and updates are included with the RLX Control Tower Service Plan, under which customers receive technical support and software.

Key new features in RLX Control Tower 4 are:

  • ServerBlade 1200i Support: Control Tower 4 can provision, monitor, and remotely manage the newest release as well as other RLX blade servers.
    • Authorization Management: Role-based access and role-based control for granting special Control Tower permissions to end users and extensions to support LDAP
    • Enhancements to Software Provisioning: Can now install individual software packages or a single file (in addition to copying entire software images) to hundreds of server blades
    RLX also announced a new module for Control Tower 4: the RLX Control Tower Failover Plugin. The software plugin is designed to establish a seamless Control Tower backup and recovery solution by providing mirrored copies of Control Tower Blades in different chassis, potentially in different locations.

    Finally, RLX announced three cluster computing solutions at this time: RLX Compute Cluster Solution, RLX MPI Compute Cluster Solution, and RLX BLAST Cluster Solution (now upgraded with Platform LSF 5). The turnkey solutions consist of middleware, RLX ServerBlades, and RLX management software for running clustered and parallel applications.

    All three cluster solutions are available now and run on both the 800i and the 1200i. They are priced starting at $2,646.

    RLX ServerBlade 1200i is available immediately is priced starting at $1,529. The base offering includes 256 MB of DDR RAM. Configurations with up to 2 GB of DDR RAM and up to two 60 GB drives are available. The RLX 300ex chassis, a 3U chassis holding up 12 1200i blades or up to 24 800i or 667 blades, is $3,299.

    The RLX Control Tower 4 Blade is available immediately as well and is priced at $2,999. In addition, each RLX ServerBlade managed by Control Tower requires a Control Tower license, which is $199 per blade. The RLX Control Tower Failover Plugin is $6,998 and includes two RLX 1200i blade servers imaged with the failover plugin.

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