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HP takes risc on PA plans

8600 arrives sooner as Alpha threat mounts

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Hewlett-Packard is attempting to respond to threats from the Alpha microprocessor by bringing forward the release of its PA-8600 chip. The company issued a statement yesterday intended to tantalise and tease its end-user base. It hopes the processor will speed up data intensive apps like data warehousing, CAD and e-commerce. Curiously, Compaq's Wildfire, slated for the end of this year, also aims for these markets. The company said it will include high availability features, and come in 500MHz and 550MHz by 2000 Q1. It will have faster cache algorithms and cache prefetch technology. It will also include error checking and correction (ECC) on its 1.5MB of cache on die, and include lockstep capability. While HP's new guard hopes that the PA Risc technology will pass into history, its old guard thinks differently, we are informed. ®

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