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IBM ships modular Itanium

Nov 20, 20032 mins

* IBM’s latest server can scale to 16 processors

IBM last week launched its second Itanium server, a box with as many as 16 Itanium processors for customers with growing 64-bit environments.

The Itanium 2 box, which will be used for high-transaction applications, will run either Microsoft Windows, or Linux from Red Hat or SuSE, now a division of Novell.

The x455 is a cousin to IBM’s x450, a four-processor Itanium IBM announced last year. The x455 can be configured with up to four modules, each containing four processors. Each module is 7U high and has its own processors, I/O and as much as 56G bytes of memory.

The processors of the x455 are linked with a chipset called the Enterprise X Architecture (EXA), which IBM first showed off in its 16-processor x440 server. The chipset lets four-processor modules be connected together to provide scalability.

The x455 supports as much as 224G bytes of memory and operates at 1.3 GHz to 1.5 GHz.

Because it can be expanded from four to 16 processors, IBM expects it will be used in growing environments involving databases, enterprise resource planning or customer relationship management.

The company is also expected to introduce a 32-way Itanium 2 server in the first quarter of next year.

The x455 can be managed remotely from any Web browser using the Remote Supervisor Agent II, which IBM also announced last week. It starts at $1,000.

The x455 starts at $22,000; it is expected to be available in December.