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Where can I look for information on comparing server manufacturers in preparation for W2k migration?

Where can I look for information on comparing server manufacturers in preparation for W2k migration? We prefer to do a parallel migration to new servers. Compaq? Dell? IBM? HP?

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You can start by looking at each companies' web site and examining the servers that they have. You will need to decide on the system configurations you would be looking for first. Like dual or quad processor, slim design with external storage or lots of internal disk storage, etc. Then compare the models between the companies. A couple of sites: www.pcmagazine.com and www.zdnet.com offer some decent comparisons of the various vendors. I have built systems from each of the vendors and can offer my humble opinion here. Understand that everyone will have a different opinion based on experience.

Compaq
These systems are my personal favorite. Their construction is very nice for access and for rack units are very easy to install. The software installation and updates for firmware and drivers is very easy. Compaq has always impressed me as a company of technicians that really knew what they were doing.

HP
These systems are good. Some of the models have some pretty poor physical designs - while other models are very well done. Their new LP1000,2000 line seems to be some pretty solid work. Their automated installation systems are not as developed as Compaq's. In addition, their firmware/drivers update will have you running around on the internet getting downloads and installing them individually.

IBM
They have a few too many models for my taste, but they are cleaning that up. Their systems are built very nice and their software installation processes compare nicely with Compaq's.

DELL
They are relatively new to the server market. Their systems have signs of their imaturity in the market, but I have repeatedly heard that their support teams are excellent and very responsive. It's probably their biggest selling point.

This was first published in October 2001

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