HP Bulks Up Intel-Based Offerings

By Jeffrey Burt  |  Posted 2003-02-18 Print this article Print

New offerings increase power and performance for users of its Intel- and RISC-based servers.

Hewlett-Packard Co. is aiming to increase power and performance for users of its Intel- and RISC-based servers. At the Intel Developer Forum in San Jose, Calif., this week, HP will unveil a new chip set, the sx1000, for the next generation of 64-bit Itanium 2 processors—code-named Madison—and the next-generation PA RISC chip, the PA-8800—code-named Mako.
The chip set will enable the use of HP-UX, .Net and Linux operating systems on midrange and high-end servers.
Also this week—but not at IDF—the Palo Alto, Calif., company is unveiling two Intel-based eight-way servers—the ProLiant DL740 and DL760 G2—that will feature a new chip set called the HP F8, hot-plug RAID memory capabilities and ProLiant Essentials management software. The sx1000 chip set also will support dual processor modes, said Brian Cox, product line manager for HPs Enterprise Systems Group. The new chip set will appear in the Itanium-based version of the companys 64-way Superdome server, which will be released this summer to coincide with Intels next version of Itanium, code-named Madison. Midrange PA-RISC servers with the sx1000 will ship in the second half of the year. The PA-8800 chip will have dual-core processing. However, Itanium is not due to get dual-core processing capabilities—having two full processors on the same silicon—until 2005, with the chip code-named Montecito. But in the first half of 2004, HP will roll out a daughter card, the mx2, that will combine two Madison processors in a single socket, giving Intel-based HP servers dual-core processing capabilities, Cox said. "This gives us the ability to double the number of processors" in each server, Cox said. HP plans on offering the mx2 module—which will be supported by the sx1000 chip set—across a wide range of Itanium-based servers, from the entry-level systems to high-end servers, he said. Included in the daughter card will be a bus connector chip—code-named Sherpa—that will sit between the two processors and the chip set and will manage the data traffic to and from the processors, Cox said. In addition, HP this week is releasing two Intel-based eight-way servers—the ProLiant DL740 and DL760 G2—that will feature a new chip set, the HP F8; hot-plug RAID memory capabilities; and ProLiant Essentials management software. A key to the new F8 chip set is the combination of PCI-X technology, Gigabit Ethernet, Ultra3 SCSI and Intels Xeon MP processor, giving the servers increased performance and bandwidth capabilities, according to HP officials. The servers hot-plug RAID memory uses a redundant array of dual in-line memory modules to provide fault tolerance and enable users to expand and maintain memory without having to bring the systems down. HP ProLiant Essentials management software comes with new features, including the HP Insight Manager 7 SP2, which provides an integrated console for the companys Performance Management Pack. The memory pack, also new, includes the ProLiant Performance Analyzer, which monitors the servers for hardware bottlenecks and gives corrective recommendations. Both servers are available immediately, with the DL760, which fits into a 7U chassis, starting at $27,999, and the density-optmized DL740, which fits into a 4U chassis, starting at $24,999.

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