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March 14, 1997updated 05 Sep 2016 12:19pm

IBM TAPS RS/6000 TO PEDDLE INTEL/NT WORKSTATIONS

By CBR Staff Writer

Just like it said it would (CI No 3,032), IBM Corp is going to use its RS/6000 division’s workstation expertise to help sell a new line of Pentium Pro-based NT personal workstations built by the IBM PC Co called IntelliStation Z Pro that are to be unveiled next week. The plan was formulated in good time for the company to be able to put on a brave face when the axe officially fell for NT-on-PowerPC just a few weeks later. At that time the company said it would roll the small number of PowerPC-based NT customers it had picked up during the combination’s short lifetime over to Intel-based solutions. The plan would be far more significant if IBM were, for example, trying to transition key CAD/CAM applications such as Catia or ProEngineer or its PowerPC-based AIX customers over to NT, but to the best of our knowledge it isn’t. The 200MHz Pentium Pro workstation will be followed within the next few months with another IntelliStation based on the Pentium II (MMX-enabled) chip Intel plans to release next quarter. The two machines will have the same price and the same performance as the entry-level and mid-range RS/6000 computers using the versions PowerPC 604. The four IntelliStation Z Pro models are designed to run complex visualization applications that can simulate earthquakes or car crashes, and cost $4,800 to $10,000 with up to 1Gb RAM. IBM has built in Universal Serial Bus support, although Microsoft won’t support it until NT 5.0 arrives. IBM officials denied the shift was another blow for the PowerPC, which IBM has sought to establish as an alternative to Intel microchips. The NT-on-PowerPC no vote was taken many moons ago.

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