Feeds

Azul opens 768-core diner with Vega 2

Humble and willing to talk about it

Top three mobile application threats

Java crusher Azul Systems has birthed a second generation of hardware and proven that it's a start-up capable of learning lessons.

Azul this week unveiled the 3200 Series versions of its servers. These systems run on the 48-core Vega 2 chip - also new - and eat up 5U of rack space. The Model 3210 gives customers 96 processor cores, support for 48GB of memory and a 580 Watt appetite, while the Model 3220 ships with 192 processor cores, support for 192GB of memory and a 1000 Watt appetite.

As most of you know, list prices don't mean squat, and they mean even less in the hardware world where vendors exclude large DIMM bills from their press release price tags. That said, Azul has flagged up the 3200 Series hardware as starting at $50,000, which proves that it has learned start-up lesson number one: don't scare the crap out of potential customers with what's largely a made up price.

When Azul first emerged from stealth mode last April, its Vega 1-based, 96-core unit, 5U unit "started" at $89,000. With another processor generation and a few slammed doors behind it, the company appears willing to sacrifice hypothetical margins for increased interest.

Azul has also learned that it needs to supply more concrete performance information. And so we find the wee server maker bragging about a world record SPECjbb2005 benchmark set with a high-end 16-chip (768-core) box that ships next year. (Azul will also have another higher-end system that ships in the first half of 2007.)

The company once had a nasty tendency to keep performance information secret and issued little more than whispered promises that BEA's software hummed on its machines.

Azul, incidentally, has firmed up that relationship with BEA but is still missing a similar partnership with IBM around WebSphere and with Microsoft around .Net. It's also still involved in a legal dispute with Sun.

The customer win press releases from Azul remain rare creatures. The start-up spends most of its time banging on about a win with BT.

In addition, its virtual machine speed-up play continues to look fairly limited and so far out of the ordinary that it would make most customers uncomfortable.

We are, however, impressed with how Azul has matured its sales operations. Few start-ups come through with the pricing and performance proof changes in such short order. And analysts seem to be picking up on this as well.

"Azul seems much more measured, much more serious, and much more grounded," wrote Illuminata's Jonathan Eunice. "Beyond being a welcome shift, this narrowing of focus gives Azul much more opportunity to discuss things at which it’s genuinely advantaged."

Well said. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Kingston DataTraveler MicroDuo: Turn your phone into a 72GB beast
USB-usiness in the front, micro-USB party in the back
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Inside the Hekaton: SQL Server 2014's database engine deconstructed
Nadella's database sqares the circle of cheap memory vs speed
BOFH: Oh DO tell us what you think. *CLICK*
$%%&amp Oh dear, we've been cut *CLICK* Well hello *CLICK* You're breaking up...
Just what could be inside Dropbox's new 'Home For Life'?
Biz apps, messaging, photos, email, more storage – sorry, did you think there would be cake?
AMD's 'Seattle' 64-bit ARM server chips now sampling, set to launch in late 2014
But they won't appear in SeaMicro Fabric Compute Systems anytime soon
Amazon reveals its Google-killing 'R3' server instances
A mega-memory instance that never forgets
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.