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Server Specs: HP to design snowflake data center

HP sees snowflake design as the data center of the future; Avocent releases remote data center management tools.

HP sees snowflake design as the data center of the future

Hewlett-Packard Co. (HP) is working on designing a data center for the future, which takes its cue from nature in the form of a snowflake.

The snowflake-like structures could then be stacked on top of one another as high as the data center needed. Palo Alto, Calif.-based HP, along with a Seattle-based design company called Teague, is working on building a model of this futuristic data center design, which could be ready within months.

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The company started brainstorming the future of data centers earlier this year and went straight to nature to determine an efficient design. It looked at honeycombs, seashells and roses, but finally settled on the snowflake.

Company officials don't expect data centers to start adopting the new design full swing, but to have the concepts be gradually accepted over the next 10 years.

Avocent releases MergePoint for remote data center management

An Alabama company has released a hardware device designed to help IT directors manage server environments in their data centers.

Huntsville, Ala.-based Avocent Corp. has released MergePoint 5200, which it says allows IT workers to manage their servers remotely and securely with a Web GUI that's easy to understand. It also has a separate command-line protocol interface that allows for management of equipment from multiple vendors and uses technologies in the box from major vendors like HP and Dell Inc.

The 1U box has 512 MB of memory and an 80 GB SATA drive, along with service processor support for the Intelligent Platform Management Interface, Dell Remote Access Cards and HP's Integrated Lights Out. The starting cost, which includes 64 targeted licenses, is about $4,000, with another 64 licenses costing about $1,500 and another 128 costing about $2,500.

CA hires Nancy Cooper as next CFO

CA Inc. has hired Nancy Cooper, the senior vice president of IMS Health Inc., as its next chief financial officer (CIO) and executive vice president.

Cooper will leave the Fairfield, Conn.-based healthcare and pharmaceutical data provider next month to move to CA. Cooper takes over for Bob Cirabisi, the corporate controller who was serving as the interim CFO. The former CFO, Robert Davis, left CA in May after 15 months on the job.

Prior to working at IMS Health, Cooper was the CFO for Reciprocal Inc., a digital rights management and consulting firm, and Pitney Bowes Credit Corp. credit card company.

Davis' departure in May followed similar announcements earlier in the year by chief technology officer Mark Barrenechea and chief operating officer Jeff Clarke that they would be leaving CA. The company has been embroiled in a multimillion-dollar accounting scandal, and analysts say that the turnovers may signal CA's attempt to show the market that it's starting fresh by bringing in outside people to take over vacant positions. The hiring of Cooper continues that trend.

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