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Technology / AI and automation


In a barrage of new transaction-processing systems and enhancements, Tandem Computers Inc on Monday brought out six new packages in its top-end NonStop VLX line, added new features to the EXT mid-range machines, and introduced a new communications subsystem. There are also price cuts on some EXT and TXP systems. The four new high-end VLX packages are the VLX801, 802, 803 and 804, rated at 50, 100, 150 and 200 transactions per second with the NonStop SQL relational database. They come with eight to 32 CPUs and come with memory, disk, tape, the new communications subsystem, and Guardian 90XL operating system; prices go from $2.1m to $8.6m. The two new low-end VLX hardware-only systems come in two and three-processor models with memory, disk and tape drives at $585,000 and $759,000 respectively. All are out now. For the mid-range (originally low-end) EXT10 and EXT25 there is an add-on input-output cabinet with 16 slots, up to four disks and two cartridge tapes, asynchronous communications package for up to 144 lines; and a streaming cartridge tape unit. The entry price of the EXT10 is cut by 9% to $74,900, and the EXT25 falls 23% to $250,000. With the add-on cabinet, the systems can handle from 4 to 18 SQL transactions per second. The cabinet is out in the fourth quarter. Cuts on the old TXPs range from 15% to 25%; the two, three, and four-processor configurations now cost $299,000, $446,000 and $593,000 respectively; TXPs take up to 16 CPUs and process nine to 18 SQL transactions per second. The new 6100E communications subsystem is a fault-tolerant, microprocessor- based unit to link Tandem hosts to peripheral devices; it supports up to 180 lines; with fibre optic cables, it can be up to 1,625 feet from the host. It works with all NonStops bar the low-end CLX; the entry price is $14,696.

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