Rack Server vs Blade Server.

Blade servers and rack servers are the most commonly used server types in data centers as today’s technology demands better hardware and IT infrastructure. This article will give you a better understanding of both servers with in-detail information.

Comparison Between Rack & Blade Server:

Brands     

Both blade and rack servers are available in leading brands like Dell, IBM, HP, Cisco, etc. These brands come with almost the same features and benefits but they differ in terms of costs and configurations. Choose your server configuration as per your business needs and budget limitations.

Features  

Rack servers are powerful and can run high-end applications and fit easily in the space-constrained environments as they occupy less physical space. For example, in the case of Dell servers, they are highly efficient due to their lower chassis configuration and power cooling equipment.

Blades feature a huge chassis and are hot-swappable that could provide data redundancy and reduced power consumption. They provide higher processing power and need minimal space.

Cost          

The rack server is more cost-effective than blades when number of blades in the chassis are increased gradually. Blades are costlier than the rackmount servers. Typically, Dell servers with a blade chassis have a cost range between $4000 to $8000, which is more expensive than a 1U rack.

Reliability  

A large number of potential issues can be caused by a rack server as it includes a huge network of cabling system including power cords. Blade server systemhais reduced power supply points and hence less cabling, and common network source that could enhance the overall system reliability.

Durability  

Durability is higher for blades than rack servers due to their higher density configuration and cooling features. The power supply of blades is common for all components that could improve the performance and longevity of components. In contrast, the power supplies to all servers in the rack separately increase the operations to be handled by each server.

How to choose the Suitable Rack and Blade Server for Your Business? 

Rack servers are general-purpose servers that would be better suited for small, micro, or medium-level businesses, where the strategic priority is information technology. Blades are the ideal solution for large enterprises to compute high-end processing workflows.

It’s required to checklist the key points or features you need in your server before choosing a rack or blade server for your business. They include network connectivity, bandwidth flexibility, a continuous power supply, software integration capabilities, storage expansion, greater speed, and scalability needs. You need to sort out these requirements and select a suitable server depending on your business needs.

What are the Pros and Cons of using Rack and Blade Servers?

Pros and Cons of Rack Servers

Pros:

Space-efficient

Rack servers have their required components like CPU, memory, power supplies, and hard drives. They suit less spacious enterprises and perform intensive computing operations for business tasks.

Efficiency

Rack-mounted servers have been used in restricted data center space and they can be extended easily with the support of additional storage, memory, and processors.

Cost-effective

These servers can be deployed at a lower cost without compromising on providing energy efficiency and effective management.

Cons:

Power usage

The energy cost would be increased with the densely populated racks that demand more cooling units. For example, Dell servers’ energy needs will increase for a larger number of racks, and so will the costs.

Maintenance

Racks’ maintenance, troubleshooting and management are more complex and time-consuming.

Pros and Cons of Blade Servers

Pros:

Processing Power

Although blades require limited space, they provide high-end processing power capabilities.

Low energy consumption

The energy spending will be reduced in blade chassis that supplies power to multiple blade servers unlike rack servers, where powering and cooling of multiple servers occurs in separate racks.

Multi-purpose

Blades can be designed to host enterprise-level applications, databases, hypervisors, software, and other high-end processes and applications.

Availability

The environment of a blade server simplifies due to centralized maintenance and monitoring, clustered failover, and load balancing. The system’s availability improves with hot-swapping capability.

Cons:

Upfront costs

As blade chassis consumes less energy and has streamlined management interfaces, the operating expenses are rational over time. The costs for initial capital, configuration, and deployment are higher.

Energy costs

Advanced cooling equipment or climate control is needed for blades with higher density. The expenses are more for maintaining the cooling, heating, ventilation, and efficiency of blade servers.

Conclusion

Choosing a blade or a rack server completely depends on the type of business case or needs. Both racks and blades are configured to perform similar functions. Purchase a suitable server type that should be the best one economically and meets your office space layout and processing requirements. When selecting an optimal server, you should consider important aspects like electrical and thermal, computing, and carrying capacity.