Feeds

Sun decides TI's not so ab fab

Bring us TSMC

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Sun Microsystems' long, wafer-wrapped embrace with TI will start coming to a close. Earlier today, Sun announced that TSMC will manufacture future versions of its UltraSPARC processors.

TI will hang on as Sun's foundry through the 65nm generation of processors, which includes Sun's upcoming Rock server chip. TSMC will then step in at 45nm to produce Sun's chips and has vowed to make 32nm processors as well. At 45nm, TI will continue to test and package Sun's chips, but TSMC looks set to take over all of those duties come 32nm.

Sun's shift to a vendor like TSMC was inevitable given TI's reluctance to pour funds into next-generation chip plants capable of dealing with Sun's complex server processors.

The long-standing relationship with TI benefited Sun. The two companies were close allies and shared in the burden and rewards of making the UltraSPARC chips. Sun must now hope that TSMC, which serves numerous clients, will afford Sun a similar, favored status.

We're guessing that TI will hang around for the 45nm packaging, since Sun has some complex designs in store. It should be pumping out second generation Rock chips on 45nm that include face-to-face interconnect technology.

Rather optimistically, Sun also pitched the TSMC deal as a win for its OpenSPARC efforts. Sun has once again freed up its microelectronics team as a separate business unit, and the chip folks have been trying to tempt other companies to build processors around Sun's designs. Sun has open sourced the design of its UltraSPARC T1 and T2 chips and may well open source Rock.

"As part of today's announcement, both Sun and TSMC will collaborate to expand Sun's OpenSPARC program," Sun said. "In the first phase of the program the two companies will work together to expand the university outreach program in Taiwan."

Researchers at the University of Texas, Stanford, Carnegie Mellon, University of Illinois, University of Michigan and University of California are all experimenting with the OpenSPARC program. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
The cloud that goes puff: Seagate Central home NAS woes
4TB of home storage is great, until you wake up to a dead device
Azure TITSUP caused by INFINITE LOOP
Fat fingered geo-block kept Aussies in the dark
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
Intel offers ingenious piece of 10TB 3D NAND chippery
The race for next generation flash capacity now on
Want to STUFF Facebook with blatant ADVERTISING? Fine! But you must PAY
Pony up or push off, Zuck tells social marketeers
Oi, Europe! Tell US feds to GTFO of our servers, say Microsoft and pals
By writing a really angry letter about how it's harming our cloud business, ta
SAVE ME, NASA system builder, from my DEAD WORKSTATION
Anal-retentive hardware nerd in paws-on workstation crisis
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.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
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?
Protecting against web application threats using SSL
SSL encryption can protect server‐to‐server communications, client devices, cloud resources, and other endpoints in order to help prevent the risk of data loss and losing customer trust.
Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile
Data demand and the rise of virtualization is challenging IT teams to deliver storage performance, scalability and capacity that can keep up, while maximizing efficiency.