The blade market is a tough one, being that it is an enterprise-class market with high expectations and low customer volume as opposed to regular servers. It's also a market that is dominated by IBM and their extremely renowned blades. HP, however, wants to swoop in and steal some of that thunder from IBM. They've recently completely overhauled their blade offerings and now have a new lineup that looks very impressive.
HP has been working on the fresh hardware for three years, and the arrival of the c-Class gear marks the most significant blade server redesign from a Tier 1 server vendor to date. A number of new management, cooling and networking features have been bundled into the c7000 chassis, which address many of the problems customers have faced with the compact blade servers. HP hopes the latest line of systems can finally help it wrest the blade server market share lead from IBM.
HP has their work cut out for them, especially since many vendors are reluctant to buy HP soley due to HP's backing of Itanium and the little need to move away from existing IBM blade centers. HP does have good offerings though, including technology improvements right down to the chassis fan, one of which supposedly cuts energy consumption in half while still providing adequate cooling. Neat stuff.