Dell OEM - the who, what, where, when and how

This week, Neowin got a chance to visit Dell in Austin Texas for their OEM conference. We got the opportunity to meet a lot of the engineers behind the scenes of Dell and learn about the internal workings of their OEM partners. If you follow me on Twitter, you may have noticed the #DellOEMDay hashtag, with a variety of tweets on what was being uncovered.

The Who

Dell OEM has been a very quiet group, that is until now. Many of us may have never heard of Dell OEM, or even know they even existed. This is a group of engineers working very closely with many big corporations like Google to provide them with all their server needs. We were shocked to learn that Google uses Dell servers to power their operations.

Dell OEM is a group of engineers that take requests from companies, like Google, and supplies them with hardware in what is called a "white box." This term means that servers are provided debranded, so Dell doesn't flash their logo everywhere, and actually brands any logo, company name, or unique design onto the server, giving the company a very unique looking server.

The What

Dell OEM provides customized solutions to companies that come to them with problems. Dell will take any request, and turn it into a working product. An OEM partner can come to Dell with a design, hardware or even software issue, and Dell will engineer a working solution for that company. This $1 billion dollar a year business is still a fairly new product, and is making a lot of headway in the server market for customized solutions.

Dell OEM even does custom engraving into laptops for their new lineup of personal computers. Meaning you can get your company name or logo, or even a message written on the lid of your laptop.

The Where

Dell OEM solutions are everywhere, you just can't see them. That's because their products are sometimes shipped to market without any branding of any sort. So the next time you're scanning an item at a self-checkout, you might be using a Dell.

The When

Dell OEM solutions have been available for a number of years, and are constantly striving to improve the look, the amount of customizability, and availability of their products. Dell OEM is limited to OEM partners at the moment, but could eventually open up to personal supplies in the distant future, if the demand is high enough.

The How

The only way to get one of these custom made servers, is to be a DELL OEM customer. The average consumer won't be able to get a custom made, custom design server just yet.

Dell showed us a custom made rig with 16TB of HDD Storage, two SSD hard drives, 24GB of RAM, a Telsa C2050 GPU, custom cabling, all powered by a 1100 watt power supply. This custom machine is just one example of what Dell OEM can push out.

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