HP, Intel Talk Up Itanium

HP to unveil 64-bit servers; Intel to reveal more road map details.

With sales of Intel Corp.s Itanium processor on the rise, the chip maker and Hewlett-Packard Co. together are looking to entice more enterprises to 64-bit computing with new systems and a glimpse at the Itanium road map.

At the Intel Developer Forum this week in San Jose, Calif., HP will demonstrate two midrange Itanium-based servers. At the same time, Intel executives will disclose more details about the future road map of the 3-year-old chip. The disclosure will come a week after the Santa Clara,Calif., company began expanding the Itaniums range, rolling out two low-power, low-cost chips aimed at the low-end server and workstation space.

HP this fall will fill out its server line with new eight- or 16-way midrange servers based on Itanium 2 processors, company officials in Palo Alto, Calif., said. An HP spokeswoman said the company will release the names and pricing of the systems at a later date.


For its part, Intel will outline plans for its 64-bit processors, including Tanglewood, an Itanium chip that would feature multiple cores on a single piece of silicon. While Intel officials have declined to discuss the project, one analyst said the plan could result in a new set of products for the company and OEMs.

"It would have higher processing power and lower prices [than current chips]," said Rob Enderle, principal analyst for The Enderle Group, also in San Jose.

In addition, Intel will lay out a BIOS updated for modular 32- and 64-bit computing, Chief Technology Officer Pat Gelsinger said. The Tiano project BIOS rewrites the spaghetti code of previous BIOSes that were based on 8- and 16-bit processing and presents it in a modular format. It will enable such things as multiprocessing, plug-and-play RAID and secure booting, Gelsinger said.

Next page: AMD puts the pressure on Intel.