Feeds

Users hunt for missing 64-bit kit from AMD and Microsoft

Promo stunt turns ugly

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

AMD and Microsoft want nothing more than to tell you about the wonders of 64-bit Windows computing. The problem is that they've run out of cheap, promotional hardware used to lure customers to their shared North American Tech Tour events, leaving many users questioning whether they'll attend the 64-bit marketing love fests.

Over the past month, AMD and Microsoft have offered prospective Tech Tour attendees massive discounts on PC and server bundles that include the 64-bit Athlon and Opteron chips in combination with 64-bit versions of XP and Windows Server 2003. These bundles have proved so popular that two of the world's largest technology companies simply can't deliver enough gear for the Tech Tour crowd. Word of the hardware shortage has people looking to hear about AMD and Microsoft's offerings concerned, since the marketing extravaganza is only four cities into a 13 city tour.

"AMD and Microsoft are bringing you 64-bit computing at substantial savings!" the companies said in Tech Tour promotional material. "This offer is only available through the registration site, and you must attend the AMD/Microsoft Tech Tour 2005 to purchase."

The two vendors had been offering a PC system running on an Athlon64 3200+ and Windows XP x64 Edition for just $250. In addition, customers could pick up a server system with two Opteron 246 chips and Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition for just $500. Those prices, which basically include Windows for free along with the motherboards, are well below market prices and were meant to tempt resellers, system builders and other partners to get on the 64-bit bandwagon. Microsoft only recently rolled out its 64-bit desktop and server operating systems for AMD's chip and hoped a little brainwashing from 3pm to 10pm would push things along.

Potential Tech Tour attendees, however, quickly found out that the offer was too good to be true.

"Due to the popularity of the offer, we have sold out and do not have any bundles at this time, nor do we know whether there will be any available in the near future," the companies said today in a notice.

So far, events have been held in Chicago, Toronto, Tampa and Atlanta. There are still plenty of events yet to take place throughout the US and Canada, but a few less people might turn up with the prospect of cheap kit gone.

"I don't know if it's worth a drive to Houston now," said Arturo Castellanos, an IT consultant in Austin. "Asking for six hours of our time was already a stretch. The only thing that would get me down there now - besides free servers - is a quality remake of Ballmer's developers, developers, developers skit."

AMD likely has the most to lose should possible attendees drop out of the event because of missing hardware. It's doing all it can, especially in the server market, to exploit a lead over Intel with both 64-bit technology and dual-core processors. Microsoft has been very vocal about its support for AMD, mentioning the chip maker ahead of Intel in some 64-bit Windows promotional material.

Will the two vendors get their acts together and find some cheap PCs and servers for their customers? Here's hoping. ®

Related stories

Xen grows up with SMP server slicer
Microsoft's Virtual Server to become a 'feature' in 2009
The Osborne Effect spooks Apple
Veritas embraces 64-bit Windows/Linux on Opteron
Itanic sinks at Lloyds Register

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Azure TITSUP caused by INFINITE LOOP
Fat fingered geo-block kept Aussies in the dark
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
You think the CLOUD's insecure? It's BETTER than UK.GOV's DATA CENTRES
We don't even know where some of them ARE – Maude
Cloud unicorns are extinct so DiData cloud mess was YOUR fault
Applications need to be built to handle TITSUP incidents
BOFH: WHERE did this 'fax-enabled' printer UPGRADE come from?
Don't worry about that cable, it's part of the config
Stop the IoT revolution! We need to figure out packet sizes first
Researchers test 802.15.4 and find we know nuh-think! about large scale sensor network ops
DEATH by COMMENTS: WordPress XSS vuln is BIGGEST for YEARS
Trio of XSS turns attackers into admins
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity
IT teams can automatically detect problems across the IT environment, spot data theft, select unique pieces of transaction payloads to send to a data source, and more.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?