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May 6, 1997updated 05 Sep 2016 12:25pm


By CBR Staff Writer

Data General Corp has armed itself with yet another symmetric multiprocessing stick, yesterday finally coming clean on an agreement to use Corollary Inc’s Profusion crossbar switch technology in future high-end SMP servers (CI No 3,081). The Corollary architecture enables vendors to create eight-way systems incorporating two of Intel Corp’s four-way Pentium Pro SHV quad boards. They’re seen as Windows NT vehicles, but can also run SCO UnixWare at a pinch. DG’s ccNUMA AViiON servers are a pure Unix play as ccNUMA’s seen as lying well outside NT’s functional domain for the foreseeable future. However, what’s become of Data General’s plan to use Unisys Corp’s 533Mbps Synchronous Coherent Memory (SCM) bus in a line of servers supporting up to ten processors isn’t known (CI No 2,972). DG couldn’t supply anyone who wanted to answer questions on the subject but the suggestion is that DG regarded SCM as an interim solution it would provide before Profusion showed up, though Unisys’ delays might have made that requirement redundant. Unisys on the other hand is building new servers in its ClearPath 61000 line using DG’s ccNUMA backplane design and software plus Scalable Coherent Interconnect boards which also link Intel’s four-way SHV. The Profusion deal is repeat business for Corollary. DG used its previous generation C-bus II architecture in three Pentium-based AViiON SMP servers. This summer a race broke out between Corollary and NCR Corp to collect as many OEM customers as they can for their competing eight-way Intel P6 architectures, Profusion and OctaScale. Corollary, which announced two wins, Hitachi Ltd and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, has been seen as a likely partner for DG ever since DG showed up at a chi-chi dinner for customers – or those soon to be – hosted by Corollary during last Fall’s Comdex show. Hitachi sold more Corollary kit in its Japanese market than DG did in the US or Samsung in Korea, however that mix may change this time around as Corollary adds new partners. It says some will be repeat business, but other will be new. It’s likely to lose a few existing customers, it admits. It also investigated doing a ‘son of Profusion’ which could support more than eight processors but said the notion got a very lukewarm reception from its customers. Meantime DG just recently introduced versions of Advanced Logic Research Inc’s six-way Pentium Pro SMP server technology as the AV 6600, running DG-UX or NT (CI No 3,153). ALR has effectively bent the rules and stretched Intel’s four-way architecture to six ways using some custom bus-clustering technology. The ALR boxes are positioned as low-end servers.

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