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Hardware Trends That University Research Departments Should Know About

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  Tim Poor, Director of Field Application and Sales Engineering, discusses the challenges university research departments face and the hardware trends they should know about.

When you look at the hardware trends today and where things are going, researchers are facing the same issue in the university that corporate customers are going to face or that a government customer is going to face. Their data sets are growing.

Researchers have a need for variable performance or variable compute needs. But they're really constrained, more than others, by budget. They're either hopefully getting a grant from some private institution or they're getting their funding from the state if it is a state run institution. Researchers at the university level are limited on the amount of money they can spend on the servers.

When looking at the different trends out there that are going to help them boost their capabilities and help them move forward from a performance standpoint, such as moving from standard platter drives onto solid state drives, you'll see a tenfold increase in the performance for maybe a two or threefold increase in price.

Servers Direct is also seeing faster networking technologies, moving from gigabit Ethernet up to 10GB or 40GB, so Servers Direct is able to move data back and forth between the systems much more quickly than in the past. Plus, the price points of those networking technologies are coming down.

Again, you have a technology that's moving forward and someone that isn't in that technology every day looking at what's the most they can get for their dollar for that server. Again, working collaboratively with a solution provider that can help them understand where things are going and the technologies that are getting better all the time allows us to find that right solution for what they need.


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