The features of this product that I value most are:
A datacenter in 8U; you can accommodate 14 servers in a BladeCenter H chassis.
Total redundancy in all its components: power, cooling, communications, fiber, administration and blades
Stacking features, you can configure several BladeCenters to have redundancy
Excellent support in case of any failure (and I am not saying this because I worked for IBM)
One point of management
The ability to combine Intel, AMD, and POWER blades
For how long have I used the solution?
I have been using, installing, and implementing this solution for eight years.
What was my experience with deployment of the solution?
I had no problems installing the equipment.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
So far, I have had no stability problems.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
If we talk about scalability, it is quite expensive , especially when you need to buy more blades. It's even more expensive if you configure them for high performance parts.
How is customer service and technical support?
Technical support is excellent.
Which solutions did we use previously?
I had some experience with its direct competitor, the HP Blade line. In my opinion, the HP product has a higher rate of failure than IBM Blades.
How was the initial setup?
Initial setup was not complex at all. The wizard integrated in the administration module (AMM) made things fast and easy.
What about the implementation team?
I implemented the chassis by myself.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
My recommendation is to always have your maintenance contract up to date. This product has been on the market for more than 10 years; it is the obvious thing to do.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
I try to implement the options of both Cisco and HP, I was convinced the superiority of the IBM proposal
What other advice do I have?
Despite the fact that we are living in the cloud era, in my opinion, we still need hardware in our own datacenters. I believe that the hybrid cloud is the future, and we are going to keep buying hardware adequate for this solution, even more so in third-world countries, where computing power needs are not as big.
In my opinion, modular hardware technology is disappearing. There is a tendency to buy standalone servers that are much cheaper and offer similar or better performance.
IBM replaced the BladeCenter line with the Flex Chassis. However, that Flex system is way more expensive than the BladeCenter, and it doesn’t sell as well as Blades.
My recommendation is, if you have the money and you have significant experience with modular servers, go for the IBM Flex System Chassis.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.