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RLX rolls out blades and high-end software

RLX Technologies upgraded its blade server line, releasing new hardware, management software and improved high-performance computing applications.

RLX's ServerBlade 1200i is based on the 1.2GHz mobile Pentium III processor from Intel. Users will be able to pack 12 of the 1200i blades in a 3U chassis. Each blade can hold two 60Gbyte disks and 2Gbytes of memory. A ServerBlade 1200i with one processor and 256Mbytes of memory starts at $1,529.

Blade servers build on a trend among hardware makers to cram as many servers as possible in the smallest space.

RLX and Hewlett-Packard have led the still young blade computing market so far. However, competitors such as Dell, IBM and Sun Microsystems, are catching up.

RLX has pushed to fit as many blade servers as possible into a chassis. With some of its systems based on Transmeta processors, RLX has managed to squeeze 24 blade servers - essentially exposed motherboards - into a 3U (133mm) high case.

The new 1200i, however, uses faster, more energy hungry chips that limit how closely servers can be stacked but also makes the server more suitable for high-performance applications.

Along with the new server, RLX launched Version 4.0 of its Control Tower management software.

With Control Tower 4, administrators will find new tools for managing user settings such as IDs and access to applications. The software lets an administrator vary user controls between each blade, giving them more fine tuned control over the hardware.

Users can now update the software on their blades one file at a time. Previous versions of ControlTower required administrators to work with the entire software image, including the operating system and applications, on a blade. Administrators can now send just a software patch, for example, across all of their servers.

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