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HP greets Madison with Integrity

Fingers crossed

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Security for virtualized datacentres

Hewlett-Packard has greeted Intel's new Madison chip with a host of new servers and a new brand.

HP has laid out an aggressive roadmap for servers based on Intel's latest 64bit chip. Right off the bat, HP said it plans to add Madison to existing two processor and four processor systems, On top of that, HP will roll out 16 processor, 32 processor and 64 processor Superdome systems based on Itanic. Later this year, midrange eight processor and 16 processor boxes will arrive as well. All of the servers will be sold under the new Integrity Server brand.

But that's not all.

In the near future, HP has plans for a two processor box targeted at the telco market, two new workstations, and a pre-packaged high performance computing cluster built on Madison. In 2004, an Itanic replacement for NonStop servers will appear.

The sense of urgency is clear. HP has to shift all of its customers off the proprietary chip architectures of old and onto the, uh hem, industry standard of the future. Itanic may not be shipping in volume now, but fear not. Virgins have been readied for sacrifice.

To its credit, HP has picked up some of the early, big Itanium deals and its impressive array of systems should build on this trend.

While waiting for Itanic to "ramp," HP continues to update its more profitable line of Xeon servers. HP matched Intel's Xeon MP speed-bumps by adding the new chips to its eight processor and below ProLiant boxes.

HP continues to pitch its Intel-only server line as the better option against the RISC-muddled products of Sun and IBM.

In case HP users have any doubts about boarding the Itanic, the company's marketing department has prepared a helpful mantra.

"Itanium will win the market. HP will win with Integrity," we are told.

Please chant this three times and then continue with your software port. ®

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