USPS to continue down server consolidation path

USPS to continue down server consolidation path

The Postal Service replaced all of its technology two years ago, reducing the number of servers to less than 4,000 from about 20,000. But now USPS chief technology officer Robert Otto wants to consolidate even further.

Otto said yesterday that the Postal Service will release a request for proposals in February to trim the number of Unix servers and improve the operational support of those machines.

USPS currently has about 1,000 Unix servers to go with about 1,200 infrastructure and 1,500 application servers, Otto said at a luncheon in Washington sponsored by the Industry Advisory Council of Fairfax, Va.

Otto said he also will be looking for help from the private sector in other areas, such as data warehouse management, systems development, remote device management and IT security. He added, though, that no RFPs for those services are imminent.

He said he would like to move more contracts to service-level agreements at a fixed cost and away from time-and-materials contracts.

Additionally, USPS will implement a new human resources system this summer using software from SAP America Inc. of Newton Square, Pa. This application will replace one from 1983, Otto said.

Otto also said the Postal Service will look to replace 65,000 point-of-sale devices and that it needs to buy more Postal machines, similar to an automated teller machine.

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