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NEC Solutions (America) Inc. is growing its line of fault-tolerant systems with the rollout this week of its midrange Express5800/320Lc server that combines software monitoring tools with the company’s high-availability platform.

The new server, which will be available later this week, includes ExpressCluster Self Recovery Edition, or SRE, which offers IT administrators the ability to automatically restart applications and operating systems.

Previously, if a system went down, an alert was sent to notify the right IT people that there was a problem. A person then had to assess the situation, figure out if the problem was hardware- or software-related, and then fix the problem, said Dick Csaplar, product manager for the Sunnyvale, Calif., company’s Solutions Platform Division. The result would be some downtime for important applications.

“Now, it will be done automatically,” Csaplar said.

In addition, the software automatically can reboot the server, he said.

The software is a key step for NEC, Csaplar said. The company’s fault-tolerant platform offers hardware redundancy, with at least two of most components running in lock-step. If one goes down, it automatically fails over to the other.

The SRE software, which monitors and restarts the application and parts of the operating system—including device drivers and resources—gives even more protection, he said. The software is available in both the new Express5800/320Lc and existing 320Lb.

The two-way 320Lc joins the low-end 320Lb and high-end four-way 340Hb in NEC’s line of fault-tolerant servers. The new 4U (7-inch) system will feature Intel Corp.’s 2.8GHz Xeon processors, up to 6GB memory and up to 311.1GB of hard disk drive space. It will support Microsoft Corp.’s Windows OS now, and Linux starting next month, Csaplar said.

The system will be supported by NEC’s new S2800 storage array, which features its Remote Data Replication technology for disaster recovery and SnapShot Data Replication to reduce backup costs.

The 320Lc will start at $24,999, with the price of the 320Lb dropping to about $21,500, Csaplar said.

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