Compaq to go from eight Fosters to eight McKinleys

Itanium a niche market, it seems

Paul Santeler, VP of Compaq's x86 enterprise server division is perfectly sanguine about where Intel's Itanium microprocessor stands, at least in the Houston roadmap. According to Santeler, who was remarkably frank about Compaq's future roadmap in a lunchtime interview: "Positioning Itanium is like positioning the new 454 engine from Chevvy. The Itanium is a new engine and we'll use this engine in a new car when it makes sense." He said Compaq will bring Itanium to market in a four way system first, and targeted specifically at specialised markets. Compaq will use an eight way system based on Foster (Willamette) and then will migrate that model to the future Intel McKinley model. Interesting. Compaq reckons there is so much growth in the eight way market, as its sales figures have proved, that it makes more sense to migrate the eight way model to McKinley, kind of leaving Itanium for the Itaniates. He said deals Compaq had brokered with Unisys would allow it to leverage 32-way x86 based systems and that he and his team will pursue rival Sun relentlessly. "The people I'm going after is (sic) Sun," he said. "We're a threat to Sun. Sun isn't a threat to us." Compaq's switched fabric technology will, said Santeler, who has worked there for 11 years, "drive volume economics into 32-way space". And so our next question, and our next story, was What about Alpha then? ®

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