Feeds

Blow for ‘Windows Mainframe’ as Compaq dumps Unisys

Single figure UK sales

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The essential guide to IT transformation

Compaq has followed Hewlett Packard in dropping Unisys' flagship ES7000 server, the much-vaunted 'Windows mainframe'. Compaq will instead focus on 8-way systems, clustered if need be, in preference to the high-price, high-end 32-way box. The 'e-@action Enterprise Server ES7000' was dropped from HP's line-up last month; the partnership lasted less than six months and didn't yield a single sale.

The server uses a proprietary hard-partitioning scheme it calls CMP, which links four four-ways with a mainframe-style switch. It can run Unix and Windows applications concurrently, but it's very much sold as a Windows machine: that's the only OS Unisys mentions on its ES7000 web page. And Microsoft has made the most of it, frequently citing it as proof that Windows has mainframe reliability and scalability.

However the truth remains that you get what you pay for. Or less. Getting low-end commodity OSes to take advantage of the monster reveals a different story: Microsoft SQLServer maxes out at 12 CPUs, and Linux has only upped its SMP capabilities with the latest kernel.

And with a starting price tag close to $2m, the ES7000 has been going head to head against proven proprietary Unices from IBM (whose Sequent NUMA x86 boxes offers similar partitioning capabilities), Compaq's Wildfire, HP's Superdome and Sun's Starfire lines. On Monday IBM added Linux partitioning to its AS/400 range, too.

How can you justify spending $2m on a Windows machine? With some difficulty it seems: sales have been sluggish and a mole reports that UK sales are 'in single figures,' almost all at Microsoft reference site Abbey National.

To be fair, Microsoft can argue lower $/TPC results than the proprietary Unixes, but this is going to be challenged as Linux matures. While server consolidation is always going to be financially attractive, the case for mixing different OSes in a single system when they could all be running some flavour of Linux is going to be much harder to make. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
Kaspersky backpedals on 'done nothing wrong, nothing to fear' blather
Founder (and internet passport fan) now says privacy is precious
TROLL SLAYER Google grabs $1.3 MEEELLION in patent counter-suit
Chocolate Factory hits back at firm for suing customers
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies
You can try turning them off and on again
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
Facebook to let stalkers unearth buried posts with mobe search
Prepare to HAUNT your pal's back catalogue
Ex-IBM CEO John Akers dies at 79
An era disrupted by the advent of the PC
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.