Unlocking Opterons Potential
SuSE delivers ample scalability.Review: suse delivers ample scalability.Advanced Micro Devices Inc.s Opteron processor provides a new option for accessing the benefits of 64-bit computing, but companies will have to pair Opteron-based systems with a 64-bit operating system to experience all the new chip has to offer. eWEEK Labs tested the first such enterprise-class operating system: SuSE Inc.s SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 8 for AMD64. With support for as many as 64 processors and 512GB of physical memory, this version of SuSE (www.suse.com) delivers significant scalability gains and provides companies with a platform on which they can run 64-bit-optimized applications as they become available. The price is also right: The operating system began shipping last week for $448 per CPU.
Several operating system vendors are hot on SuSEs trail: SuSE rival Red Hat Inc. is expected to add support for the Opteron this fall, in Version 3 of its Red Hat Enterprise Linux, and Microsoft Corp. has announced that it will release a beta version of Windows Server 2003 for the Opteron in the middle of this year. MandrakeSoft Inc.s Mandrake Linux supports the Opteron in Version 9 of its general-purpose Linux distribution, and Opteron support is expected in a release this month of Mandrake Linux Corporate Server 2.1.