IBM has added a new blade server to VMware's ultra-thin ESX 3i hypervisor stable, a move that adds to the growing momentum of low-cost server technology sporting integrated virtualization capabilities.
The company's BladeCenter HS21 XM machine will offer virtual environments on start-up by matching the 3i system with a 4-GB flash drive, all of which will be pretested to eliminate integration hassles, says Enterprise Open Source Magazine.
The 3i system has been in high demand lately, particularly on the low- to mid-level server designs by virtue of its small size -- 32 MB as opposed to the 2 GB of the full ESX server. IBM has joined HP, Fujitsu, Dell and others to embed the system into their hardware. For VMware, the strategy offers a way into those enterprises that are looking to refresh their systems, even if they're not particularly interested in virtualization just yet.
In fact, it is widely expected that embedded systems will be the primary means of deploying virtualization technology in a few short years, with the hypervisor joining the operating system as one of many pre-installed components.