Intel ramps up Itanium line

Intel Middle East is shipping six new multi, dual and low voltage Itanium 2 processors for the regional market. The chip vendor claims its new processors deliver performance increases of 15% for database transaction processing and up to 35% for overall integer and floating point performance.

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By  Maddy Reddy Published  November 10, 2004

Intel Middle East is shipping six new multi, dual and low voltage Itanium 2 processors for the regional market. The chip vendor claims its new processors deliver performance increases of 15% for database transaction processing and up to 35% for overall integer and floating point performance. The Itanium 2 platform is positioned for transaction processing, data warehousing, business intelligence, enterprise resource planning (ERP) and high performance computing requirements. This platform complements Intel Xeon processors with Intel Extended Memory 64 Technology, which is targeted at general purpose enterprise applications such as web, workgroup, file, print, infrastructure and application logic giving IT managers a choice between 32 and 64-bit computing solutions. With the new product line, the world's largest chipmaker is aiming squarely at gaining more market segment share from the US$20 billion proprietary RISC market. “The multi-billion dollar RISC market segment is ripe for the Intel approach. Today’s enhancements to the Itanium 2 processor lineup will further support customer migration away from costly, proprietary systems,” says Abhi Talwalkar, vice president and general manager of the Enterprise Platforms Group at Intel. The chip vendor has already notched up a major win through its deployment at NASA, which currently has the world’s fastest supercomputer. The SGI Altix system is powered by 10,240 Itanium 2 processors running on Linux. Other recent Itanium 2 wins include the MGM Mirage, Bank of New York. The new processors include the Itanium 2 processor MP at 1.60 GHz with 9 MB level three (L3) cache at 400 MHz front side bus (FSB) for business critical applications such as database and ERP. Also available are the Itanium 2 processor MP at 1.60 GHz with 6 MB of L3 cache and the Itanium 2 processor MP at 1.50 GHz with 4 MB of L3 cache. The Itanium 2 processor DP at 1.60 GHz with 3 MB L3 cache at 400 and 533 MHz FSB is targeted at high performance computing clusters and front-end enterprise systems. The new processor claims to offer improved floating-point performance per compute node, resulting in up to 40% better price per gigaflops (billion calculations per second) -- a measure of price-performance for compute-intensive workloads, over RISC-based systems. The Itanium 2 processor LV at 1.30 GHz with 3 MB of L3 cache at only 62 watts is targeted at low cost systems and dense form factors such as blade servers. In 1,000-unit quantities the Itanium 2 processor 1.60 GHz with 9 MB L3 cache is priced at US$4226 while a similar processor with 6 MB L3 cache is priced at US$1980. On the lower end the 3 MB L3 cache processor is shipping at US$851. The low Voltage Itanium 2 processor 1.30 GHz with 3 MB L3 cache is marked at US$530. Intel is offering Itanium 2 processor systems ranging from two-way to 512-way systems through system manufacturers including Dell, Fujitsu Siemens, HP, Hitachi, IBM, NEC, SGI and Unisys in the region. The platform currently supports a five operating systems and more than 2000 business applications.

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