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HP leads pack with Istanbul iron

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Lineup lowdown

The new HP ProLiant G6 servers sporting Istanbul Opterons include four rack and three blades servers:

  • ProLiant DL165: This is the entry, cheapo model designed to appeal to enterprises for infrastructure workloads or supercomputer cluster buyers who basically just want CPU oomph and some networking. The DL165 G6 is a two-socket 1U rack server that can support the three Opteron 2400 variants running at 2.2 GHz, 2.4 GHz, or 2.6 GHz. The box supports up to 64 GB of DDR2 main memory (that's eight memory slots, and using very pricey 8 GB DIMMs), and it has two PCI-Express 2.0 slots, room for four 3.5-inch SAS or SATA disks, and two Gigabit Ethernet ports. A base machine with a single 2.2 GHz Opteron 2427 processor, 4 GB of memory, and no disks costs $1,679.
  • ProLiant DL385: This is the 2U workhorse rack server, which has two processor sockets that can support the three Opteron 2400 variants as well. The new DL385 supports up to 128 GB of DDR2 main memory using 8 GB DIMMs and has room for sixteen 2.5-inch SAS or SATA drives. (As with the Xeon-based G6 machines, customers can use 3.5-inch SAS or SATA drives in some models, if that floats their boat). The DL385 has four Gigabit Ethernet ports and three PCI-Express 2.0 slots. The entry machine with one 2.2 GHz Opteron 2427 processor, 4 GB of memory, and no disks costs $2,124.
  • ProLiant DL585: This is a four-socket box that will likely see action as a virtualization and database platform. The DL585 G6 comes in a 4U rack chassis and supports the 2.4 GHz Opteron 2431 or 2.6 GHz Opteron 8435 processors and up to 128 GB of main memory and up to eight 2.5-inch SAS or SATA drives for local storage. The box has seven PCI-Express 2.0 and two PCI-X legacy peripheral slots, and two Gigabit Ethernet NICs on the motherboard. In a base configuration with one 2.4 GHz Opteron 8431 in the box, 16 GB of memory, and no disks, HP is charging $17,029 for the machine.
  • ProLiant DL785: This is a machine that scales up to eight processor sockets in a single system image, but it won't be available until the third quarter. So pricing is not available. The DL785 comes in a 7U chassis and will support the current top-end Istanbul Opteron 8431 running at 2.4 GHz (rated at 75 watts) as well as the forthcoming 2.1 GHz Opteron 8425 EE (rated at 55 watts) and 2.8 GHz Opteron 8439 SE (rated at 105 watts). The Opteron SE, EE, and HE parts are not coming out until the third quarter. The DL785 has eleven PCI-Express 2.0 slots and dual Gigabit Ethernet NICs standard and maxes out at 512 GB of main memory using 8 GB DDR2 DIMMs.
  • ProLiant BL465: This is a half-height, single-wide blade server for BP's BladeSystem c3000 (Shorty) or c7000 chassis. It is a two-socket machine that supports up to 64 GB of main memory and has room for two 2.5-inch SAS or SATA disks as well as two Gigabit Ethernet NICs on the card. (Like other blades, mezzanine cards are used to link out to shared storage). With one 2.2 GHz Opteron 2427, 4 GB of memory, and no disks, the entry BL465c costs $2,229.
  • ProLiant BL495c: This is a two-socket blade that supports only the 2.2 GHz Opteron 2427 and 2.6 GHz Opteron 2435 Istanbuls and that offers twice as much main memory as the BL465c, at a maximum of 128 GB. It also comes with two embedded two-port 10 Gigabit Ethernet ports. With one 2.2 GHz Opteron 2427, 4 GB of memory, and no disks, the entry BL465c costs $2,359.
  • ProLiant BL685c: This is an existing four-socket ProLiant G6 blade that is being sold with both Shanghai and Istanbul chips. The BL685c is a full-height, single-wide blade that has 32 DDR2 main memory slots, for a maximum of 256 GB of main memory. The blade has two 2.5-inch drive bays, two embedded two-port 10 Gigabit Ethernet ports, and three PCI-Express mezzanine slots. With two 2.4 GHz Opteron 8431 six-core chips, 4 GB of memory, and no disks, this blade costs $10,978.

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