IBM Releases Powerful Express Server and Security Offerings to Mid-Sized Business Clients

IBM announced the industry's first high-performance Express UNIX servers and a new security solution for mid-sized business clients. These Express servers, based on the IBM POWER5 microprocessor, introduce mainframe-inspired technology and performance to clients at prices and configurations that fit the budgets of even the smallest mid-size firms.

With starting hardware prices of $3,993 and $7,050 respectively, the IBM eServer p5-520 and p5-550 Express models are among the most cost-effective in the industry. These latest additions to the IBM Express Portfolio of servers deliver leadership floating point performance compared to the AMD Opteron processor-based Sun V40z, the Itanium 2 processor-based HP rx4640 and the PA-RISC based HPrp3440.(1) A 2-way IBM eServer p5 520 (1.65 GHz) achieved the best 2-way two-tier SAP SD Standard Application Benchmark result as of October 5, 2004.(2) Clients who want higher performance can opt for a p5-550 system running at 1.5 GHz, or purchase a p5-550 system with a 1.65 GHz processor. The p5-550 is the fastest four-way NFS file server in the industry.(3)

Mid-sized clients can further benefit from 36-month leasing options from IBM Global Finance that start as low as $99 per month on selected servers. Also, new financing enhancements for Express offerings can allow contract approval in as little as one hour.

IBM eServer Express POWER processor-based systems, which include a recently announced line of iSeries Express servers, leverage the industry standard Power Architecture, designed to provide an outstanding combination of performance and scalability on both entry and midrange UNIX platforms, further demonstrating IBM commitment to provide mid-sized clients the price and performance advantages they need to reduce costs and increase competitiveness while growing their businesses. The new servers and an IBM eServer POWER-based solution offering are part of IBM's rapidly expanding portfolio of nearly 70 On Demand Express servers, storage, software solutions, representing the industry's most comprehensive set of solutions intended to meet the specific needs of mid-sized clients. IBM Express solution offerings are powered by IBM systems with IBM TotalStorage, running IBM middleware and ISV applications, and backed by the largest network of IBM Business Partners, IBM Global Financing and Global Services.

According to market research, finding ways to integrate multiple operating environments -- to ease current management burdens and position companies for future growth, without compromising technology performance -- is a leading priority for mid-sized companies. In an effort to increase their competitiveness, clients are demanding solutions that allow them to respond more effectively to the market while remaining focused on their core businesses, key characteristics of an on demand business.

``We are providing mid-market customers something they have never had before -- power and flexibility at their fingertips that allow them to grow their businesses without significantly taxing their smaller IT staffs and budgets,'' said Karl Freund, vice president of Product Marketing, IBM Systems and Technology Group. ``The introduction of these Express systems provides further example of the performance and affordability possible with POWER5 technology.''

IBM eServer p5 Express models come with advanced security and integration capabilities, as well as optional virtualization capability that gives growing mid-sized firms with small IT staffs and budgets the ability to consolidate multiple servers, applications, and operating systems, including Linux and AIX 5L, on a single server, for easier, more cost-effective management of their IT infrastructures. Also, because of IBM's use of open-standards based adapters, clients can easily integrate network peripherals, including storage systems and network servers.

In addition, the IBM On Demand Express portfolio now includes a line of new IBM eServer xSeries Express industry-standards based systems marketed through an expanded IBM ``Top Seller Express'' channel program. This global initiative leverages select configurations of IBM's newest xSeries models built on Intel's new EM64T processors. In conjunction with IBM's extensive Business Partner community, IBM is providing SMB clients xSeries-based solutions that are easy to buy, configure, install and manage. IBM eServer xSeries Express models bring to mid-sized and smaller clients in the Intel space years of system design experience through the IBM Xtended Design Architecture. Clients can now run their 32-bit applications faster than ever, migrating to 64-bit when they want, without changing hardware. New Express models include the IBM eServer BladeCenter and the x206, x226, x236, x255, x306, x336, x346 and x365 models. Express models and configurations vary by geography.

IBM Security Express Portfolio Solution for eServer
IBM also announced the IBM Security Express Portfolio Solution for eServer, an offering that helps address security and intrusion protection for midsized clients who have a need for end-to-end data protection and collaboration, but lack the skills to create their own solutions. This solution includes Virtual Private Network (VPN), mail gateway, virus scanning, spam filtering, intrusion detection, as well as internal and external firewalls. In addition, it comes with pre-defined Linux partitions and can be implemented by IBM Business Partners, or IBM Global Services, in one-and-half to two-and-a-half days.

IBM's On Demand Express Portfolio
The IBM On Demand Express Portfolio offers hardware, middleware, services and financing -- all tailored to the needs of mid-size businesses -- that can be acquired, installed and managed quickly, are cost-effective, and deliver a rapid return on investment (ROI). The nearly 70 offerings in the IBM On Demand Express Portfolio enable clients to improve the responsiveness and flexibility of their IT infrastructure, so they can concentrate on their core businesses. And because cash flow is one of the most pressing issues for mid-sized businesses, the IBM On Demand Express Portfolio is more affordable with a series of attractive financing options. To learn more about IBM's Express Portfolio visit: (http://www.ibm.com/businesscenter).

(1) All IBM SPEC results were submitted on October 4, 2004. All competitive results as of October 4, 2004. A 4-way eServer p5-550 Express (1.5 GHz) achieved a SPECfp_rate2000 result of 83.2 compared to a 4-way Sun v40z (2.4GHz) which achieved a SPECfp_rate2000 result of 70.0, a 4-way HP rx4640 (1.5GHz) which achieved a SPECfp_rate2000 result of 65.6, a 4-way HP rp3440 (1.0GHz) which achieved a SPECfp_rate2000 result of 32.6. Source: (http://www.spec.org)

(2) The 2-way IBM eServer p5 520 (1.65 GHz) achieved the best 2-way two-tier SAP SD Standard Application Benchmark result as of October 5, 2004 (572 benchmark users, 1.96 second average response time, 57,330 fully processed line items per hour, 172,000 dialog steps/hour, running IBM DB2 Universal Database 8.1, AIX 5L V5.3, SAP R/3 Enterprise Release 4.70 solution. The certification number was not available at press time and can be found at the following web page (http://www.sap.com/benchmark).

(3) A 4-way eServer p5-550 1.65 GHz achieved a SPECsfs97_R1.v3 result of 75,839 ops/sec. As of July 12, 2004, this was the best result of any 4-CPU system. Source: (http://www.spec.org).

All price information is based on IBM U.S. list prices.

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