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February 18, 1993


By CBR Staff Writer

Pyramid Technology Corp is preparing to release the first fruits of its work with Oracle Corp on the Parallel Database Server under the code name Valance. The project, which may be the subject of announcements around the UniForum trade show next month, is among a number of similar joint developments on which Oracle has been working in conjunction with symmetric multiprocessor hardware suppliers, including Pyramid rivals Sequent Computer Systems Inc and NCR Corp. The lack of scalable database technology has so far kept the symmetric multiprocessor vendors to a ceiling of around 20 processors for commercial users before the performance benefits start to tail off. Sequent offers up to 32 processors on its Symmetry line, but the largest configurations have all gone to scientific users. Pyramid offers 24 processors, but chose the 20-processor limit to run its Oracle 7 benchmarking figures, released last year. Pyramid will be upgrading the processor technology in its ES range to MIPS Technologies Inc R4000s some time this year, and also adding faster bus technology and fault-tolerant features. European business development director Peter Scott denied rumours that Pyramid – like its OEM customer Inc C Olivetti & Co SpA – had been looking at Digital Equipment Corp’s Alpha chip for future developments, but pointed out that much of Pyramid’s symmetric multiprocessor technology could be converted for other systems: it has already licensed its bus and systems software to ICL Plc and Siemens Nixdorf Informationssysteme AG, and says that further deals will follow.

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