Tell us what you want out of a computer system
by Michael Bowling, on Jan 27, 2020 8:09:38 AM
“Within the first 10 minutes of my visit your competitor had already pigeonholed me into a specific model number and then told me they needed to customize it to fit my needs.”
Last week we had a potential military customer visit and he made the above comment multiple times throughout the day. Here is a brief overview of his technical requirements and our responses:
- He said he needed lots of PCIe gen 3 x16 slots and we showed him multiple standard options.
- To emphasize the point we actually showed him our PCIe expansion options which we’ve designed to handle 248 GPU cards in one host system.
- He needed lots of non-volatile NVMe storage so we discussed multiple architectures that we’ve done in the past trying to balance volume of storage, performance of storage, and security of storage.
- He had a number of specific chassis questions and we were easily able to accommodate with our standard off the shelf options.
- Security was a top concern for this US military application, so we discussed our made in US story. Remember, Trenton is the OEM…we designed, manufactured, and supported the processor boards!
- Being able to communicate directly with Trenton engineers was important so we introduced him to our tech support team, BIOS design team, test technicians, etc. which are all located here in our Atlanta, Georgia office.
We discussed many things and the common theme was that Trenton Systems was extremely flexible and could meet whatever needs he had. “You just tell us which CPU, GPU cards, hard drives, drive carriers, slide rails, ethernet cards, etc. you prefer. Yes, we will make recommendations and our engineers will work directly with you to help design a product that is ideal to meet your needs…but we’re agnostic and flexible on the options.” My philosophy is that if the customer is successful then Trenton Systems is successful.
The military is pushing more on MOSA, SOSA, FACE, and VICTORY where they want to ensure that they are not getting locked in to custom computer hardware while the supplier has the façade of being COTS. Also, with the growing concern of national security and a push towards US content…I believe Trenton Systems is well positioned to provide our military customers exactly what they need without requiring customization and NRE. Of course, I would love to fully design a compute system for military programs, but Trenton Systems standard products are so flexible that they will fit many military needs without requiring customization!