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MBX Systems overhauls server production with Super Cell system

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MBX Systems, a Seagate Cloud Builder Alliance partner, recently improved its manufacturing operations by taking a novel approach to work area layout. Under the new setup, called Super Cell, MBX Systems technicians can produce a higher number of custom server appliances than ever before, serving the company’s many clients in the enterprise software vendor space.

In the past, MBX Systems conducted testing and configuration at different locations, creating bottlenecks in the production process. Speaking to DesignNews, MBX Systems director of operations Carl Nothnagel explained that under the old setup, each technician could only test and configure eight servers at a time, impacting the company’s ability to fulfill client orders.

“Previously, system configuration and testing took place at two separate workstations, neither of which had room for 40 assembled systems,” Nothnagel told DesignNews. “Technicians had to move each system from a cart, hook it up to a server rack in the configuration station for software imaging and related operations, unplug it, place it back on a cart and repeat the process at a separate testing station. Eight different steps were required.”

After MBX Systems moved into a new plant in Libertyville, Ill., it addressed this issue with its Super Cell project. Each Super Cell workspace enables employees to work with 40 servers on a cart, and it features a computerized command cente​r, from which they can monitor and test multiple devices at once. By linking Super Cells together, technicians can work with up to 400 servers at a time.

The results have been dramatic. MBX Systems went from producing 5,000 servers per month under the old system to 20,000 per month with Super Cell. The new arrangement has improved MBX Systems’ ability to meet large orders and attract more clients in need of custom server technology.