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Q&A: HP's Integrity product manager reveals his thoughts

Quoting from TechWorld

On the eve of HP's launch of a new range of Integrity servers containing Intel's Montecito chip, we spoke to Ken Surplice, European product manager for HP's Itanium-based products.

...

Q: What's the justification for anyone buying into Itanium now? A: The latest generation -- Montecito -- is a big step forward in terms of driving down costs. The entry-level market -- that's four-way and below -- is hotting up nicely.

Yes, there's a huge overlap between high-end Xeon systems and Itanium, but each OS segment is big business -- Windows and Linux will carry on and it takes care of itself. If customers want a Xeon-based server, they go buy one.

This refresh plus the two new servers take away performance issues. We are delivering up to four times better price performance -- but it's really about virtualisation, ease of use, and performance/watt. We've a 2x performance per watt advantage and have taken a lead over [IBM's] Power.

It's not just us saying that. Customers who tested previous-generation Madison chips found a 40 per cent performance boost. We're now getting maximum performance out of the chip -- more than double performance with its dual core.

And the infrastructure refresh means that all servers are ready for next generation Itanium for next two or three years -- all it will need is a daughterboard swap. We've also backed two horses at the entry level: the new Montecito in the previous servers and, in parallel, new entry level two and four-way servers.

After the launch, everything lines up, all servers are ProLiant compatible, the management software is there, they have common storage technology, and ILO2. We can attract new business now. ...

Q: Has OpenVMS gone away yet? Can it continue to exist in an Itanium world? A: People find that 16 and 32-way systems running Unix with virtualised Windows and Linux partitions run much quicker. But we had a conference recently that was full with people queuing outside and two days of very interesting discussion. The problem is that many don't know about the alternatives that are now available -- for example Oracle 10G is here now.

What's more, Windows and Linux have had tools such as capacity planning for some time. OpenVMS people haven't had such goodies until now.

Q: Does HP regret going into Itanium? A: I can't speak for HP but I was an Alpha man. Can we give Alpha customers running OpenVMS a better place to go? Yes we can. They'll get four times better price-performance for OpenVMS on Alpha by moving to Integrity. And customers have proved that they see things in the same way since, in the second quarter, Integrity servers outsold Superdomes.

Read the entire interview, here.

Published Friday, September 08, 2006 6:45 AM by David Marshall
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