Intel Corp has now cranked up the clock speed of its Pentium II Xeon processor to 450MHz, at least in the 512KB level 2 cache flavor aimed at dual processor workstation manufacturers. Four- way server companies will have to wait until early 1999 for versions of the chip with 1Mb and 2Mb level 2 caches. The usual suspects – Compaq Computer Corp, Dell Computer Corp, Fujitsu Ltd, Hewlett-Packard Co, IBM Corp, Intergraph Corp, NEC Corp, Siemens Nixdorf, Tristar Inc and Umax Data Systems Inc – said they would begin shipping workstations using the new chip later this month. Gateway Inc also said it would be shipping a dual-processor server. Prices in quantities of 1,000 are $824. Larger caches significantly boost the performance – and the price tag – of the Xeon. In the 400MHz version, Intel says it has seen a performance difference of 20% on tpmC benchmarks between the 512Kb and 1Mb chips. Intel says it is still ramping up the volumes on 400MHz 1Mb Xeons, which are in short supply due to the high demand from server makers (CI No 3.510). We’ve fixed the issue, and expect to catch up with demand later this quarter said an Intel spokesman, who said the situation was improving day to day. After the four-way Xeons ship, Intel is expected to introduce Tanner, its 500MHz graphics-enabled part, also in the first quarter of next year. Beyond that comes the 500MHz or greater Cascade server CPU.