HP unveils blade PCs and Citrix virtualization bundle

HP bundling fourth-gen blade PC line with Citrix XenDesktop 3 virtualization software.

HP is unveiling the fourth generation of its blade PC line and bundling the devices with Citrix XenDesktop 3 virtualization software.

The HP BladeSystem bc2800 and bc2200, due out in March, sit inside the data center letting users connect to them from any location and device, whether it be a thin client, laptop or regular desktop. Unlike a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) model in which multiple virtual machines are contained on a single server, each blade PC can only serve one user at a time. But 280 of them can fit into a single rack, and client virtualization software helps deliver benefits related to security, availability, management and flexibility, according to HP.

"Blade PCs are offering knowledge workers a dedicated and predictable resource," says Dan Nordhues, director of marketing for blade clients at HP. "Because it's in the data center, you get all the advantages of the user endpoint being able to be anywhere."

While the HP blade PCs themselves will be released in March, availability for the bundle including both the PCs and Citrix XenDesktop software has not been announced. Pricing has also not been detailed.

The user experience is pretty much the same whether a customer chooses Citrix virtualization software or HP's client virtualization tools, which include the HP Session Allocation Manager and Remote Graphics Software. But HP is trying to reach out to Citrix customers by giving them the option of using XenDesktop, Nordhues says.

Customers can also choose virtualization software from VMware, Nordhues says, although an announcement issued by HP Wednesday highlights only the relationship with Citrix.

The HP bc2200 uses a single-core AMD Athlon 64 processor, while the bc2800 is based on a dual-core AMD Turion processor. Both blades are preinstalled with Windows Vista Business edition and support additional Windows operating systems and Linux.

The blade PC model typically costs more up-front than the purchase of individual desktops, but can deliver ROI in the long run in part by lowering energy costs, HP officials say. HP says its blade PCs use 25 watts each.

Other benefits promised by HP include simplifying software and hardware management; maximizing resource utilization; securing sensitive data in the data center; and higher availability. If a user is connected to a blade PC that fails, the user can simply log in again and get a new one, Nordhues says. Even though there is a one-to-one relationship between user and blade at any given time, the users don't have to use the same machine every day.

Customers sometimes opt for blade PCs when they are dissatisfied with the VDI model, either because management software is difficult to use or the cost-per-seat was not what they hoped, Nordhues says. But the client virtualization market overall has not yet taken off as much as vendors hoped. "It's a new paradigm," he says. "Some people don't want to be early adopters."

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags HPCitrixvirtualisation

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jon Brodkin

Network World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?