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July 19, 1990

IBM EYES LOOSELY-TIED 12-CPU 3090s AS NEXT STEP

By CBR Staff Writer

The 3090-1200 put together at Cornell University, New York (CI No 967) is a key part of IBM’s large systems strategy according to staffers at one of the company’s gnomic briefings on large systems given in New York this week. The machine is two 3090 600s loosely coupled but seen by the user as a single image, and the implication of what IBM was saying is that while it could now do a 3090-800 equally easily using the same coupling tech nique, it would be much less easy to do a tightly coupled eight processor system – IBM has indicated on other occasions that such a configuration would need four system control processors against two on all the current multiprocessors. IBM justified the need for enormous loosely-coupled multiprocessors by insisting that users would want bigger and bigger databases, and that these had to be held in one place. The company also acknowledged plans for fibre optic channels, but gave no indication of its plans for the introduction of Summit – but its comments make it possible that the ability to create loosely-coupled 12-processor configurations – which the company said would need major architectural changes, implying a new release of MVS/ESA – will accompany another kicker for the 3090s, and fibre optic channels, which may need new enclosures, further delaying Summit launch.

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