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SAP to virtualise 500 servers with Xen

SAP, a flagship Citrix customer, expects to save 35 percent in terminal server costs by combining XenServer virtualisation with the XenApp application through better management functionality.

The announcement is a big win for Citrix, whose entrance into the virtualisation market with the acquisition of XenSource in late 2007 has been largely overshadowed by the dominance of market leader VMware.

According to Citrix, SAP was looking to consolidate its server infrastructure and wanted to create a “much more flexible and dynamic computing architecture”.

Following an “extensive test” of XenServer, the company will proceed with a multi-stage roll-out of the server virtualisation solution onto 500 servers, initially at its Saint Leon Rot office in Germany.

In the next phase of the project, the servers in the worldwide training centers will be virtualised, followed by the project management division with several hundred development, test, and support systems.

After the server virtualization project in Germany is complete, the roll-out will continue at the end of 2009 to SAP's offices in Asia and the United States.

Citrix group vice president and general manager for the XenServer product group, N. Louis Shipley, said the company is proud that SAP has selected its server virtualisation technology said.

“This project is an excellent example of how an end-to-end virtualisation solution can help companies optimise their IT infrastructure and reduce their costs,” Shipley said.

At SAP, vice president of IT infrastructure services, Dietmar Bruder, said the company was impressed by the performance benefits of the Citrix server and application virtualisation solution.

“Our goal in implementing Citrix XenServer is to not only reduce the costs of our server infrastructure, but to also significantly lower its carbon footprint,” Bruder said. “By leveraging Citrix virtualization technology we believe that in the future we will be able to cut SAP's carbon emissions by up to 600 tons annually in addition to the immediate savings on hardware.”

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