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Intel announces Itanium 2 processors

These processors set a new precedent for world-class performance and breadth and scale of systems. This builds on the broad choice of software and operating systems and architectural strengths that have made Intel processors the choice for the majority of server deployments.

“The combination of our two enterprise architectures has addressed the diverse needs of enterprise computing from top to bottom,” said Paul Otellini, Intel president and chief operating officer. “These new Itanium 2 processors and Intel Xeon processors MP deliver world-class performance and price-performance, strengthening Intel’s leadership over competitive enterprise solutions.”

More than 85 percent of servers shipping today are based on Intel architecture(1), according to industry analysts. Today’s new products extend Intel’s strength in multi-processor, business-critical server deployments, commonly referred to as the high end of a company’s computing data center. Servers with four or more processors accounted for more than 60 percent of the total server market revenue in 2002, according to analysts.(2)

The Intel Xeon processor MP continues to deliver scalability with leading price-performance for the enterprise application and mid-range data tier, including business logic, application servers and databases. The Itanium processor family delivers industry-leading performance, price-performance and flexibility for large-scale, data center applications. These include large databases, enterprise resource planning and business intelligence applications that require maximum CPU resource utilization, support for large numbers of users, massive data sets or higher memory capacity.

Broad Customer Adoption
The Intel Xeon processor MP has a strong established base of enterprise customers, including Coremetrics, Lehman Brothers, Mohawk Industries, Morgan Stanley, Precision Response Corporation, Rite Aid and SunAmerica.

The Itanium 2 processor is broadly deployed in scientific computing environments, and is growing in commercial high-performance computing and enterprise installations, including 123 Multimedia, Airbus, British Petroleum, Burlington Coat Factory, ChevronTexaco, Cornell Institute for Social and Economic Research, DaimlerChrysler, Electra Sweden AB, Exact Holding NV (Netherlands), Fiat Auto (Spain), First Trust, Fuji Film, Lower Saxony Police (Germany), Raymond James Financial, Verisign and Wells Fargo.

Additionally, leading companies are benefiting from the complementary benefits of using Intel Xeon processors MP and Itanium 2 processors together in their computing environments, including CompUSA, Fiat Auto (Italy), Fortis Health, incomBank (Vietnam), JetBlue and Tenet Health Services.

Industry Support
The number of server and workstation models based on the Itanium 2 processor is expected to double this year, with leading system manufacturers such as Dell, HP and IBM offering more than 40 two- and four-processor systems and more than 10 “big-iron” systems with eight or more processors. These companies are applying their expertise and technology to deliver large-scale Itanium 2-based systems this year, including a 32-processor server from Unisys that combines Itanium 2 and Intel Xeon processors MP into one system, a 32-processor server from NEC, a 64-processor Superdome server from HP, and a server from SGI with 128 or more processors.

Server suppliers also plan to offer more than 50 Intel Xeon processor MP-based systems ranging from four to 32 processors this year. These new high-performing platforms will deliver outstanding application and collaboration performance as well as enable the opportunity to consolidate numerous applications onto fewer servers.

Intel continues to enable OEMs and integrators with Intel Xeon processor MP-based and Itanium 2-based building blocks, including the new dual-processor Itanium 2-based Intel Server Platform SR870BH2, a 2U rack-optimized system expected to be available in the third quarter.

Intel-based enterprise platforms are supported by thousands of applications, including a steadily growing list of Itanium-optimized software. In the past year the number of applications and tools optimized for the Itanium Processor Family has quadrupled, including optimized database solutions from IBM, Microsoft and Oracle, and major enterprise applications from BEA, SAP and SAS. In addition, later this year Intel plans to introduce the Low Voltage Itanium 2 processor (code-named Deerfield), targeted at dual-processor, lower-power-consumption systems, and the IA-32 Execution Layer, a software technology that will enhance the performance of 32-bit applications running on the Itanium processor family-based platforms. Prior to the IA-32 Execution Layer release, Microsoft will offer a preview of the technology to end users who participate in the Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1 beta program.

Operating system support for the Intel Xeon processor MP and the Itanium 2 processor now includes Microsoft’s Windows Server 2003, which has enabled the availability of several key enterprise applications, as well as Linux* from Caldera, MSC.Software, Red Hat, SuSE and TurboLinux, and HP’s HP-UX*.

Industry-Leading Performance
With the new Itanium 2 processor (formerly code-named Madison), the 64-bit Itanium processor family makes another stride in industry-leading enterprise performance and price-performance. In addition to the 48 percent price-performance advantage over RISC platforms(3), an additional 10 percent in cost for an Itanium 2-based solution brings 25 to 30 percent additional performance over Intel Xeon processor MP-based systems.(4) Itanium 2-based systems also deliver leading results on technical computing workloads, secure transactions, enterprise resource planning workloads, and raw processor performance.(5) The new Itanium 2 processor delivers up to 30 to 50 percent greater performance than the previous Itanium 2 processor (code-named McKinley), while maintaining system compatibility with the previous Itanium 2 processor and two future Itanium processors (code-named Madison 9M and Montecito). The Itanium 2 processor also maintains software compatibility with previous and future Itanium processor family products, as well as 32-bit applications.

The 32-bit Intel Xeon processor MP 2.80 GHz is compatible with existing Intel Xeon processor MP-based platforms and delivers up to 10 percent or greater performance over its predecessor(6) and better transaction-processing performance than comparable RISC-based platforms at half the cost per transaction.(7)

Pricing and Availability
The Itanium 2 processor with 6 MB of integrated level three (L3) cache at 1.50 GHz, the Itanium 2 processor with 4 MB of L3 cache at 1.40 GHz, and the Itanium 2 processor with 3 MB of L3 cache at 1.30 GHz are priced at $4,226, $2,247 and $1,338 in 1,000-unit quantities, respectively.

The Intel Xeon processor MP at 2.80 GHz with 2 MB of L3 cache, the Intel Xeon processor MP at 2.50 GHz with 1 MB of L3 cache and the Intel Xeon processor MP at 2.0 GHz with 1 MB of L3 cache are priced at $3,692, $1,980 and $1,177 in 1,000-unit quantities, respectively.