What is a Blade Server? FAQ

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What is a Blade Server?

When you think of a server or a data center, you are probably imagining a room full of wires, buzzing hard drives, and flashing lights – but did you know that Lenovo offers servers designed for small businesses and large corporations alike?

While you may not think you need a server right away, there are many reasons you should consider investing in one for your startup. For example, blade servers can centralise your data storage and increase your computing power. They also allow you to enhance your security measures and keep your data safe.

At Lenovo, we offer the best servers for small businesses. Take, for instance, our blade servers. Blade servers are a type of data center that is made up of many individual circuit boards. The electronic server blades are thin and modular, so they can be stacked into a rack-mount or organised in a tower. Each of the blade servers manages a single application, so they are all equipped with processors, input and output ports, and additional adapters.

Instead of relying on a third-party cloud provider that could increase pricing or put your data at risk, a blade server puts you in complete control of your database and corporate network. The technology is efficient and affordable, so you can also save money in the long run – while ensuring you are accessing the best equipment to help your business scale.

Keep reading to learn more about what a blade server is, the benefits that come from having your own server, and how Lenovo can help you get set up with server casings for your hard drives.

What is a Blade Server?

Before we get into the benefits of blade servers and how to go about purchasing storage for them, we must review what servers are. A server is a device that provides computing power, resources, and software to other machines.

In the client-server model, the server supports all the machines in your organisation – such as employee laptops, printers, and other technology. Instead of each device operating on its own, everything is centralised on the servers.

A blade server is a chassis configured with several electronic circuit boards. The circuits are called blades, and they are thin and modular. Every blade corresponds to a single application, so it must contain its own input and output ports, processors, and integrated network controllers.

The servers are stacked on top of one another within the rack to minimise the amount of space you need to contain them – while also simplifying power sources, cooling, and network connectivity.

Although they are powerful, Lenovo's blade servers boast simplified cabling setups and a lower need for power consumption. They can be easily installed into a rack mount, and you can perform hot swaps without taking out other blade servers from the casing.

Most systems use one large chassis that is mounted into a server rack. From there, your IT team can slide multiple blade servers into it. As such, the chassis will manage the networking, provide all the power, and more – which keeps maintenance and management simple.

The height of these blade server systems will vary based on how many CPUs you need but expanding your computing power is as simple as adding another circuit to the server. This makes them perfect for managing an enterprise storage system that requires extensive computing power and processor per RU availability.

What are the Benefits of a Blade Server?

Blade servers provide a wide variety of benefits, which is why they are one of the top choices for small office servers. These advantages include everything from simplified setup and maintenance, compact size, reduced IT management efforts, and more.

A blade server is very simple to set up and maintain. Compared to other styles of server configurations, blade servers use fewer cables. Tower servers or conventional 1U configurations require much more complex cabling setups, but with blade servers, you don't need to run an individual cable to each component. Instead, one fibre runs to the chassis and streamlines the entire power supply.

Another benefit of blade servers is that they are small and compact. Since you don't need to invest in building an entire server room to maintain them, blade servers are an ideal solution for small businesses. Even though they take up less rack space, though, it does not mean that you are sacrificing computing power.

Similarly, the streamlined infrastructure makes it easier to manage load balancing and create redundancies in case of hardware failures. As a result, your business can spend less time and money on IT management, and more on what's most important – growing your company and its bottom line.

Storing your blade server is simple when you have a Lenovo rack mount system to house them. To configure your blade server, all you need to do is set up your SAS storage, update the firmware, and install the appropriate operating system.

Once this process is complete, you can upgrade the software as needed without taking the entire system offline. Hot swaps are also simple with blade servers since you can take one out of the casing without affecting the rest of your company's network and computing power. Another way to look at this is additional redundancy because if one of the blade servers goes down you can pull it out and replace it with ease.

How to get Server Casings for your Blade Servers

Now that you understand what a blade server is and why they are often considered the best small business server, you may be wondering how to get them. At Lenovo, we have a wide selection of blade servers and casings to meet all your data storage and computing processing needs.

Our blade server cases are much more compact than other rack mounts on the market. These blade enclosures can house multiple server blades, as each of the hard drives is fitted into the individual slots inside the casing. The sleek and slim design allows you to maximise storage vertically, so the equipment does not take up as much space in your office.

As you browse the various casings Lenovo has to offer, you can choose from a wide variety of nodes, chassis, and networking devices to address your business needs. For example, our compute nodes are designed to optimise performance and flexibility – so they can keep up with demanding analytics, in-memory databases, and more. Search through the specs to find what you are looking for or reach out to an expert at Lenovo that can help you explore your options.

There is something for every budget or configuration. Consider the Flex System Enterprise Chassis that is efficient, customisable, and reliable. It is built to scale according to your business needs and works with several different generations of devices – in other words, it can meet your business where it is at but also help it grow in the future.

The storage system is ideal for businesses large or small. It can address continuously changing and complex demands, as it is equipped with high-performance and seamlessly integrated technology. Likewise, Lenovo's blade servers and rack mounts allow you to increase uptime, protect your valuable data, and support efficiency.

At Lenovo, our top priority is helping you scale your business, improve efficiency, and access powerful technology that doesn't break the bank. Even if you don't need a fully equipped data center, there is a good chance that your small business can benefit from a server.

Servers are a type of computer program that provides resources and functionality for other devices in your organisation. A blade server fits neatly within a rack mount enclosure – and each blade provides computing power to a specific application.

So, why is it essential for small businesses to purchase and install their own servers? The short answer is flexibility, speed, and control over your IT infrastructure and databases.

For instance, investing in blade servers allows you to take control of your data and eliminate reliance on cloud providers that may not have your best interest at heart. Keeping a rack mount server on-site means that you can dictate your cybersecurity standards, database usage, and more, without worrying about fluctuating monthly costs or expensive subscription renewals.

Simply put, it is better to keep the data on your own machines so that you can have peace of mind that your information is safe and secured. Having servers means that you can upgrade and redesign your components at any time.

Blade servers also improve your data storage capabilities and increase your computing power. Likewise, centralising your network on a server means that you no longer need to manually update each employee's devices or plan for capital expenditures at every upgrade.

As such, we pride ourselves on providing the best servers for small businesses – optimising high-quality specs and capabilities while keeping our offerings affordable for any budget. Our experts can help you find server deals and answer questions like, which server should I buy? We are your one-stop shop for blade servers, casings, and more.

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