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Hewlett-Packard last week chose New York and Copenhagen as the venues for the launch of its new assault on the high-end server market (CI No 1,926). Introduced were four models each in the MPE/XL 3000 and Unix 9000 ranges – the 3000 992/100, 200, 300 and 400, and the 9000 890S/100, 200, 300 and 400 – which use from one to four 60MHz Precision Architecture RISC Snake processors. There is also an additional 3000 machine, the 990/100 using a 48MHz chip, taking the entry price of the 3000 range (more expensive than their HP-UX equivalents) down to $365,000 – the 9000s start at $335,000. The 9000s will support up to 4,500 users and include 112 input-output slots, 128Mb to 2Gb memory, and maximum disk storage of 600Gb. While official TPC-A figures are yet to be disclosed, transactions per second rates range from 110 for the 890S/100 up to 336 for the 890S/400. The 3000s support 2,300 users, less because of current limitations in the MPE/XL operating system for multiprocessing, but TPS rates are higher, ranging from 114 for the 3000 990/100 up to 420 for the 992/400. Both ranges will be available in the autumn. The machines have a new architecture, including a 1Gbps memory bus and up to eight 256Mbps HP Precision Bus input-output channels, which means that users hoping to upgrade from Hewlett-Packard’s previously high-end 870 systems will face a box-swap. The machines are air-cooled, taking up one tenth of the power and physical space needed by an equivalent IBM mainframe, for around a fifth of the overall cost of ownership over three years, or a third of the price of a DEC VAX 9000, according to Hewlett-Packard figures.

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CBR Staff Writer

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