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jmke 14th February 2005 10:59

Intel to Ship 2 Millionth 64-bit Xeon Processor This Month.
Intel Corp. said the adoption of its latest Intel Xeon processors with 64-bit capability produced using 90nm process technology proceeded well and that the second millionth chip would be sold already this month.

Intel’s Xeon Shipments Growing

“This ramp up is good news; we're executing on all cylinders… By the end of February we’ll have shipped two million units of the 32/64-bit Xeon. Demand is very strong; we shipped one million in the first six months that it was available,” Intel’s general manager enterprise platform group Kirk Skaugen is reported to have said.

Intel now expects 80% of Intel Xeons shipped this quarter to be the combined 32/64-bit version, according to UK-based web-site.

Intel’s Xeon processors with Nocona core featuring 1MB of cache, 800MHz Quad Pumped Bus, Extended Memory 64 Technology as well as Demand Based Switching (DBS) with Enhanced Intel SpeedStep Technology to dynamically adjust power and lower the processor’s power demand, were released in mid-2004 as a response to AMD’s Opteron chip that featured x86-64 technology back in mid-2003.

AMD Opteron’s Sales Increasing, but Not Rapidly

Analyst Dean McCarron for Mercury Research said AMD supplied about 70 000 of AMD Opteron microprocessors in Q1 2004. By contrast, the Sunnyvale, California-based microprocessor maker supplied only about 65 000 of its server microprocessors in 2003, according to Mercury Research.

According to Smith Barney Citigroup Research estimates, AMD only sold 40 000 of AMD Opteron products in 2003.

During the third quarter of 2004, the monthly sequential growth rates for Opteron-based servers being sold through business channels in Europe recorded by Context Information Services stood at 50%. However, in October 2004, AMD Opteron server growth dropped to 8.6% compared to the preceding month of September, and in November, Opteron unit sales had dropped almost 18% compared to the previous month.

AMD Opteron-based servers are offered by companies like HP, IBM and Sun as well as several smaller system makers.

Intel to Add Cache, AMD – a Core

Intel Corp. expected to release its Intel Xeon processors for 2-way servers and workstations that will also have EM64T, EIST and EDB capabilities in addition to 2MB cache size shortly. Previously such chips were code-named Irwindale. The new Intel Xeon processors will not receive any tangible clock-speed boosts and will still be clocked below 4.0GHz, but given that server applications typically benefit significantly from larger cache sizes, the new chips may receive a warm welcome from the server makers.

In mid-2005 Sunnyvale, California-based Advanced Micro Devices plans to introduce server chips with two processing engines, typically referred as cores. The chips will reportedly consume 30-95W at launch and up to 105W of power eventually, which is inline with guidelines AMD provides for its 90nm chips. Intel Corp. is expected to release its dual-core processors for servers only in 2006.

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