Big Q sells its three millionth server

Big yawn, say rival PC vendors

Compaq has shipped its three millionth server and is claiming the lead in the race for hardware dominance. The machine, an 8-way ProLiant server, was bought by UK-based ISP Planet Online. Big Q claimed the three million figure was greater than the server shipments of rivals IBM, Hewlett Packard and Dell combined. By which, we guess it means PC-based servers -– although Compaq was a little vague on that point. Rather than call them PC-based servers, it has taken to using the term "industry standard". Compaq started shipping servers in 1989 -- the first million sales took seven years. The second million took two years to shift with this latest million being snapped up over the last 13 months. While three million is a very big number, in terms of the overall server market, it is only a drop in the server market ocean. An IBM representative described the Compaq figures as very interesting, but said it was far from impressive. "This shows that Compaq is still just a PC vendor trying to play with the big boys. They haven't even included sales of DEC Alpha servers, have they," he said. He dismissed Compaq's assertion that it holds the dominant position in the server market. "According to IDC's research figures, IBM is the number one server vendor in western Europe, with 30 per cent of the market. Worldwide, we have 25 per cent of the total server market and around 70 per cent of the world's business data sits on IBM servers." The server market is set to become increasingly important over the next five years. Intel believes that massive growth is around the corner, with only four per cent of the servers needed for the Net infrastructure of 2005 have already shipped. ®

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