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IBM BladeCenter Delivers First Fully Enabled 4Gb San Solutions

Introduces New Levels of Storage Connectivity, Price/Performance and Flexibility

NEW YORK, NY - 28 Sep 2005: Storage Decisions Conference -- IBM today announced the availability of the industry's first fully enabled four gigabit per second (4Gb) Storage Area Network (SAN) solutions for blade servers. Developed with BladeCenter Alliance partners QLogic and McDATA, IBM's blade offering now offers customers new levels of price, performance and flexibility to help them manage their total IT infrastructure and build stronger on demand business environments.

The new IBM BladeCenter 4Gb offering features the QLogic Fibre Channel host bus adapter, the QLogic 4Gb switch module and McDATA 4Gb switch module. When configured with the IBM TotalStorage DS4800, it provides businesses of any size a high performance SAN solution that is simple to deploy, easily scalable and lowers total cost of ownership. Each switch module is available in 10 and 20 port models and upgrades are accomplished easily via software keys.

"IBM BladeCenter continues to set the industry agenda, bringing to market the first fully enabled 4Gb SAN solutions for blade servers. Our chassis expands to 4Gb, bringing investment protection to our new and existing customers," said Doug Balog, vice president and business line executive, IBM BladeCenter. "These offerings with McDATA and QLogic allow clients to deploy blades in new areas like data warehousing and database serving where high data bandwidth is a requirement."

Previously first-to-market with embedded Fibre Channel switching for blade servers with switch modules developed by QLogic and McDATA, today's announcement further expands IBM's portfolio of embedded SAN switches. IBM continues to deliver on its strategy of providing industry leading SAN switch support, price/performance and flexibility for BladeCenter and continues to lead the blade server market overall, as it has for the past eight quarters.*

"McDATA is committed to delivering optimized and high performance solutions for customers and meeting their SAN infrastructure needs as they deploy new applications using IBM's BladeCenter," said Doug Ingraham, vice president of product management, McDATA. "Working with IBM and QLogic to create the first fully enabled 4Gb SAN solution for blades in the industry is evident of that commitment."

"BladeCenter offers the only fully enabled 4Gb solution for blade servers. Today's new offerings provide customers with products that can help them deploy a tiered storage architecture for always-on access to information," said Frank Berry, vice president of marketing, QLogic Corporation. "By continuing our work with IBM and McDATA, QLogic is able to help meet the needs of the rapidly expanding blade server market."

The new 4 Gb solution also:

IBM BladeCenter has the industry's broadest blade ecosystem, offering networking, storage and software technology from numerous other industry leaders including Brocade, Cisco Systems and Nortel, as part of more than 600 BladeCenter Alliance and Open Specification program partners.

Pricing and availability
QLogic 4Gb switches for IBM BladeCenter are available to order today, with pricing starting at $8,999 in the US.

McDATA 4Gb switches for IBM BladeCenter are available to order today, with pricing starting at $10,999 in the U.S.

More information about IBM BladeCenter solutions is available at www.ibm.com/bladecenter.

Contact(s) information

Tim Willeford
IBM Media Relations
(978) 878-3245
twilleford@us.ibm.com

Vineeta Durani
IBM Media Relations
(415) 545-2350
vdurani@us.ibm.com

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