NEC Corp’s relationship with Hewlett-Packard Co continues to expand and the Japanese giant will now also designs its own Unix servers around HP’s PA-RISC 8000 chip for the scientific and technical community. It’s also adding other HP servers to its product line. NEC already sells HP servers in Japan and some other geographies and is also supplying HP with mainframe-class software utilities which HP is incorporating into its HP-UX Unix. It casts further doubt over NEC Corp’s commitment to system-level products such as its 4800 server which use Silicon Graphics Inc’s Mips RISC chip. NEC resells HP’s EPS, T, K and D servers in Japan and other territories as the Superserver NX7000 line, and will begin offering the PA-8000-based D280, K370, high-end PA-8200- based Convex V2200 as well as actively promoting the home-grown P590 it is building within what it calls the TX7 Scalable Server series. NEC says it developed P590 to fill the gap in HP’s product range between the D-Class and K-Class servers. The P590 has up to eight 180MHz PA-8000s and hopes it sell it outside of Japan in future. NEC says it will develop connectivity options for linking TX7 to the SX-4 supercomputers it’s been found guilty of dumping on US markets. NEC expects to sell 150 TX-Series systems in the first year. Under their existing agreement NEC will also add Unix kernel and resource management technologies to HP’s HP-UX Unix and says it will provide other tools for the porting vector applications to scalable parallel systems. HP says the pull-through consulting and support business it gets in Japan on the back of its NEC and Hitachi Ltd relationships is princely.