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Eight-Way Servers from IBM Push Networks to New Limits

Clustering, Storage Networks and 8-way processing update Netfinity® line of Servers and Peripherals

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SOMERS, NY - 23 Jun 1999: . . . IBM today announced new servers and peripheral hardware that push the limits of Windows® 2000-class technology. The new offerings borrow heavily from IBM's legendary big-iron systems to form one of the most reliable foundations available today for e-business applications built for Intel® microprocessors and Microsoft software.

Key in the new lineup is a package of fibre based, tuned-for-management network storage devices that forms an important layer in IBM's newly announced SAN-Ready initiative. (See related release, IBM Announces Storage Area Network Strategy and Four Netfinity SAN Enterprise Storage Solutions).

Highlights of today's Netfinity announcements include:

-- New IBM Netfinity 8500R 8-way server.

-- IBM-exclusive, Microsoft-certified, 8-node clustering extension for Netfiity servers .

-- Netfinity SP Switch for high-performance clusters.

"IBM is actually lowering the cost of computing by being the first company able to offer this level of reliable and highly manageable Wintel server clusters," said James Gargan, director of product marketing, Netfinity Servers. "We're using our X-Architecture blueprint to show customers how to get more computing power for less money."

Richard Ochs, Lab Manager at Microsoft's Streaming Media Division and an early user of the Netfinity 8500R said, "The Netfinity 8500R excelled in installation, operation and performance compared to other vendor systems. We strive to ensure that our software can operate in a wide variety of platforms for optimum scalability and performance. IBM was the first to make their eight-way system available to us for testing with our current development version of Windows Media Technologies.

New Netfinity Servers and Accessories
New models were announced across the entire Netfinity server line featuring the latest generation of Intel Pentium® III processors. All Netfinity servers also come standard with Netfinity Manager software.

New IBM Netfinity 8500R: A SAN-optimized server for the datacenter. Smart management and availability features deliver superior performance for non-stop, compute-intensive business intelligence, transaction processing, enterprise resource planning, and server consolidation applications.

In early testing representative of typical enterprise resource planning applications, the IBM Netfinity 8500R server demonstrated leadership performance with the SAP® R/3 Two-Tier Sales and Distribution (SD) Benchmark, Release 4.0 B. Configured with eight 550MHz Pentium III Xeon processors, Netfinity 8500R achieved 374 SD Benchmark users with 1.99 seconds average dialog response time on Oracle 8.0.4.2 and Windows NT Server 4.0 Enterprise Edition.**

Other highlights of the Netfinity 8500R include:

-- Profusion™-based 8-way using 550MHz Intel Pentium III Xeon™ processors with 2MB L2 Cache

-- Support for 16GB of 100MHz ECC memory; planned support for 32GB of memory when available

-- 12 available hot-swap/hot-add Active PCI adapter slots

-- 8U rack height

-- Integrated Netfinity Advanced Systems Management PCI Adapter

-- Light-Path Diagnostics for easy serviceability and maintenance

-- Cluster optimized

-- Optional 99.9% Netfinity Availability Guarantee Program(3)

Netfinity Availability Extensions for MSCS: New clustering technology that will allow users to link and manage up to eight PC servers. Currently supported on Netfinity 7000M10 and 8500R servers, Netfinity Availability Extensions for MSCS features:

-- Eight node support clustering for Microsoft Cluster Services

-- Multinode fail-over support

-- Greater potential for hardware availability at lower cost

-- Supports existing 'cluster aware' applications written for Microsoft Cluster Services including IBM DB2 Universal Database, Lotus Domino, Oracle and others.

Netfinity SP Switch: High speed-low latency interconnect for clustered servers. Adopted from its bigger brother the IBM RS/6000 SP, the Netfinity SP switch features:

-- Support for 14 node server clusters

-- High speed 2.4Gb/sec bi-direction throughput per port

-- Small 2U rack height

-- Built-in management processor integrates with IBM's Advanced Systems Management PCI Adapters, processors and Netfinity Manager software for single point of control

Netfinity SAN Components: New options for offloading data and data management functions from host servers for greater flexibility and performance to achieve their business objectives. Components include:

-- EXP 200 Storage Enclosure supporting up to 364GB of storage with data transfer rates of 80MBps

-- 8 and 16 port fibre channel switch supporting data transfer rates of 100MBps full duplex per port set

-- SAN Data Gateway enabling attachment of SCSI devices to Fibre SANs enabling tape pooling configurations

-- ServeRAID 3HB - high performance, Ultra2 SCSI RAID adapter with enhanced RAID 1E and 5E options for data storage and FlashCopy dynamic database back-up

Other Related product announcements include:

Netfinity 5500M10: An enhanced version of IBM's award-winning 5500. Now includes 550MHz Intel (R) Pentium III Xeon processors. Other features include:

-- 2-way, 550MHz Pentium III Xeon processors with 512KB L2 Cache

-- Support for up to 2GB 100MHz ECC memory

-- Integrated Advanced System Management Processor for added remote workgroup management capability

-- Four available hot-swap/hot-add Active PCI adapter slots

-- Optional 99.9% Netfinity Availability Guarantee Program(3)

Netfinity 5500: Rich in availability with redundant hot-pluggable components, such as drives, fans, power supplies and PCI adapters. Key features include:

-- Up to two 550MHz Pentium III processors with 512KB L2 Cache

-- Up to 1GB ECC SDRAM memory

-- Integrated Advanced System Management Processor for added remote workgroup management capability

-- Four available hot-swap/hot-add Active PCI adapter slots

-- Optional 99.9% Netfinity Availability Guarantee Program (3)

Netfinity 5000: Supports Light Path diagnostics, making it one of the easiest servers to service and maintain. Other features include:

-- 2-way 550MHz Intel Pentium III processors

-- Support for a total of 2GB ECC SDRAM memory

-- Innovative redundant power supply

-- Integrated Advanced System Management Processor

Netfinity 3000:A file and print server for departments and small businesses. Key features include:

-- 550MHz Intel Pentium III processor

-- Up to 768MB ECC SDRAM memory

-- 80MB/sec Ultra II LVD SCSI RAID Controller

-- Support for 72.8GB of internal storage

-- Optional Advanced System Management Adapter

IBM Netfinity Servers
Netfinity servers are armor plated with advanced technologies such as Light Path Diagnostics and 'Chipkill' memory adopted from IBM's big iron heritage. The Netfinity X-Architecture provides a design blueprint for migrating these mainframe attributes to industry standard servers. Since 1998, Netfinity servers have set over 42 performance records including seven number-one benchmarks. Information on the Netfinity X-Architecture can be found at http://www.pc.ibm.com/us/netfinity/xarchitecture. Server performance information can be found at http://www.pc.ibm.com/us/techlink/srvperf.html

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Editors' Note: All IBM news releases are available on the Internet at http://www.ibm.com/press. Specific information about IBM Netfinity products, services, and technical whitepapers can be located at http://www.ibm.com/netfinity. For more information about Options by IBM, visit http://www.ibm.com/pc/us/accessories. For more information on SystemXtra, please visit, http://www.ibm.com/pc/us/systemxtra/index.html

**The environment for the 374 SD benchmark user run consisted of one database server, an IBM Netfinity 8500R server with eight 550MHz Pentium III Xeon processors with 2MB L2 cache, 4GB of main memory, and 455GB of total disk space running Windows NT Server 4.0 Enterprise Edition with Service Pack 3, Oracle 8.0.4.2 and SAP's R/3 SD Benchmark, Release 4.0 B. The measured throughput was 112,000 dialog steps per hour with an average CPU utilization of 99 percent for the central server. The central installation server ran Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 with Service Pack 3. This benchmark fully complies with SAP's issued benchmark regulations and has been audited and certified by SAP. Details can be obtained from IBM and SAP AG. The benchmark was performed at IBM's Netfinity Server Performance Laboratory in Research Triangle Park, NC, by IBM engineers.

All results referenced are current as of June 22, 1999.

(1) MHz only measures microprocessor internal clock speed, not application performance. Many factors affect application performance.

(2) When referring to hard drive capacities, GB means one billion bytes. Total user-accessible capacity may vary depending on operating environments.

(3) Available only on selected Netfinity servers that have completed Microsoft Cluster Server certification as listed on the ServerProven web site. This only includes the Netfinity 5500 series and above; the program includes mandatory services from IBM Global Services. IBM reserves the right to change the terms and conditions at any time, without notice. For more details, refer to www.pc.ibm.com/us/solutions/netfinity/999guarantee.html or your IBM PSG sales representative.

IBM and Netfinity are registered trademarks of International Business Machines Corp.
Intel and Pentium are registered trademarks and Xeon and Profusion are trademarks of Intel Corporation.
Oracle is a registered trademark of Oracle Corporation.
SAP is a registered trademark of SAP AG.
Windows is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries.
Other company, product and service names may be the trademarks or service marks of others.

Contact(s) information

Michael Corrado
IBM
914-766-3052
corrado@us.ibm.com