IBM Readies Server Enhancement

IBM is poised to announce a doubling of computing power for its Power5 Unix servers.

July 13, 2004

1 Min Read
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IBM is poised to announce a doubling of computing power for its Power5 Unix servers, an industry analyst said Monday.

The move will consolidate its pSeries family with its AIX operating system and its iSeries with its OS/400 and i5/OS operating systems, the analyst said.

"The Power5 is at the heart of all this," Nathan Brookwood, principal analyst of Insight 64, said Monday. "What IBM is trying to do here is to show that the Power5 product line is so powerful -- why would anybody think of using an Itanium?"

Brookwood said the new servers will not only compete with Itanium-based configurations from Hewlett-Packard, but also with servers from Sun Microsystems.

An IBM spokesman delcined to comment on the reports Monday.A key feature of the new IBM servers -- there will be various multiprocessor versions -- will be micropartitioning for a new version of the AIX operating system, which is IBM's version of UNIX. The micropartitioning feature will enable users to run different operating systems at the same time within a single processor. "That's a big breakthrough," said Brookwood.

The new eServer p5 family will be offered initially in processor multiples of two, four and sixteen -- each with ascending degrees of scalability. Brookwood said a 64-processor version should be available later in the year.

Brookwood noted that the new eServers represent a doubling of power over IBM's Power4-based servers. In addition to the AIX and the i5/OS operating systems, a version of Linux is expected to be available for the new family.

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