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April 28, 1994


By CBR Staff Writer

Compagnie des Machines Bull SA has stolen a march on IBM Corp and others promising parallel mainframes, coming out with the fruits of a $50m investment that bought a symmetric multiprocessing version of its GCOS 7 operating system and new DPS 7000 built around VLSI CMOS chips, which scale to 24 processors. The new Series 4X5 and Series 800 were designed at Bull’s research and development centre at Clayes-sous-Bois outside Paris and are built at its factory in Angers. The 800 series is said to double the power of its predecessor series 700, and comes with up to 24 of the new processors. With this announcement, we have completely mastered parallel symmetric multiprocessing, said Georges Tahar, DPS 7000 sales development manager. The 24-processor model uses a two-level cache and a 500M-byte per second bus, running a single copy of GCOS, Bull said. It’s only a question of power. It’s not a cluster, but a real symmetric multiprocessor, said one technician. The machines also support 100Mbps FDDI fibre optic local network interfaces, Tahar said. Software is bundled on the entry-level model of the series 4X5, while the unbundled software for its other models is cut by 50%. Prices for the systems go from just under $170,000 to $4.3m.

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