Powerful compute at the edge | Lenovo

Sam Taylor
Oct 06, 2020

A primary goal of edge computing is to bring power, storage and networking, closer to where data is generated. However, customers looking for computing solutions at the edge of their networks must often compromise - using either large and power-hungry data centre-class equipment, or PC-based equipment which can't run enterprise applications.

Introducing the Lenovo ThinkSystem SE350

The Lenovo ThinkSystem SE350 bridges that gap. Designed and built with the unique edge server requirements in mind, it offers compact design (not much bigger than a notebook), low power usage, and high performance. It’s versatile enough to stretch the limitations of server locations and includes a variety of easily managed connectivity and security options which include wired and secure wireless Wi-Fi and LTE connection ability.

Because it will deploy in various locations which may be remote, security is also important. The server includes essential cybersecurity capabilities including encrypted storage and physical security features, such as a locking bezel, along with intrusion and tamper-detection mechanisms.

In addition, Microsoft and Lenovo have teamed up to validate the ThinkSystem SE350 for Microsoft's Azure Stack HCI program. This allows customers to leverage Azure's hybrid services such as backup, disaster recovery, update management, monitoring, and security compliance.

Key features

The Lenovo ThinkSystem SE350 Edge Server includes numerous features to boost performance, improve scalability and reduce costs:

  • A purpose-built server half the width and significantly shorter than a traditional server, making it ideal for deployment in tight spaces
  • Ability to be used in various locations - mounted to a wall or ceiling, stacked on a shelf or tabletop, or installed in a rack.
  • Rugged design means it can work in non-data centre environments while handling anything from 0-55°C and up to 95% humidity with ASHRAE A4 specifications. It also offers full performance in high dust, as well as extreme shock and vibration (40G & 3Grms) environments, making it ideal for remote and/or harsh environments such as construction sites, manufacturing floors, and mining deployments.
  • Increased processing power, storage and network closer to where data is generated, allowing actions resulting from the analysis of that data to happen faster.
  • Support for remote management, including remote control functions down to the UEFI level (most models). This simplifies serviceability and makes managing edge servers easy even without onsite IT personnel.
  • Built-in diagnostics and a controller to continuously monitor system parameters, trigger alerts, and perform recovery actions in case of failures to minimise downtime.
  • ‘Zero-touch' or low touch deployment software to simplify roll-out to remote locations. IT Administrators can securely claim and activate the SE350 remotely through the ThinkShield Key Vault Portal, available on the web. They can also manage and unlock global Internet of Things (IoT) edge fleets for initial operation and in case of tamper. The ThinkShield Edge Mobile Management app enables edge users to securely claim and activate the ThinkSystem SE350 in an easy to use web-based UI.
  • Inclusion of technology that encrypts the data stored on the device if it is tampered with, only enabling authorised user access. This is a major benefit where edge servers are deployed outside a secure data centre.
  • Software plug-in modules to manage physical infrastructure from leading external virtualisation management software tools including those from Microsoft and VMware.

Ideal use cases

As a high-performance edge server, the ThinkSystem SE530 is ideal and customisable for Network Appliance, Security Appliance, Video Signage Display Player, and IoT applications where data aggregation and local analytics is required.

Product Manager for Lenovo Data Center Group Asia-Pacific, Craig Collins said, “Customers can use this embedded unit as a general-purpose server with Windows, Linux or other operating system or load their own industry specific software application on the device to make it a cloud connected system for IoT applications. The data collected from these edge devices can be sent to the cloud for analytics, Machine Learning (ML) or Artificial Intelligence (AI) insights and applications.”

Technical Specifications

The Lenovo ThinkSystem SE350 Edge Server provides up to 256GB of RAM, and up to 8 M.2 SSD drives (NVMe or SATA) for storage (theoretically 16TB). For networking, the server has four different modules depending on users’ needs, including wired connections up to 10GbE and optional support for both Wi-Fi and LTE wireless connectivity. To top it off, the server also supports the NVIDA Tesla T4 GPU for workloads such as edge inferencing, which makes it an ideal solution for resource-intense workloads like AI deployments.

About Dicker Data and Lenovo

Dicker Data is Lenovo Data Centre Group’s sole distributor in New Zealand, providing end-to-end Lenovo solutions – proactively supporting IT resellers and partners to help define appropriate Lenovo solutions.

Lenovo is a world leading technology company producing innovative PC’s and mobile internet devices. Available within the New Zealand IT market, Lenovo manufactures an extensive portfolio of connected products. Lenovo’s data centre solutions (ThinkSystem and ThinkAgile) are creating the capacity and computing power for connections that are changing business and society.

Dicker Data’s local dedicated team is renowned for their strong capabilities and flexibility when working with New Zealand IT channel partners.

Sam Taylor, Business Unit Manager for Dicker Data said, ““With a team of twelve strong, the Lenovo DCG team housed inside Dicker Data has some of the best capability and expertise in the channel to help deliver one of the best end-to-end experiences for partners when dealing with Lenovo. From various incentives to leveraging technical & sales resources, we’re dedicated to working alongside partners to ensure we’re jointly delivering business outcome-focused solutions for customers. I would encourage partners to take advantage and engage our team as an extension of their sales & technical teams to help scale and grow your business. Whether it’s building configs, specifying solutions or talking to customers around their architecture or technology strategy we have a team of experts you can lean on”


To learn more or trial the demo unit reach out to dcgquotes@dickerdata.co.nz

Contact sales@dickerdata.co.nz for all your technology needs.

Sam Taylor
7/10/2020 11:32:19 AM

Business Manager - Security
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