IBM drops Intel high-end server

Users of IBM's eServer x430 and earlier Sequent Computer Systems-based servers will have to migrate to other systems as a result of Big Blue's decision to ditch the technology.

IBM acquired Sequent for $US810 million in 1999. It announced the Intel-based 64-processor sServer xSeries 430 server featuring Sequent's Non-Uniform Memory Architecture in March 2001. In April, the company sent letters to customers announcing the withdrawal of the product, along with Sequent's associated Dynix/ptx Unix operating system.

A spokesperson for IBM Australia and New Zealand said the product was withdrawn as the company felt its newer offerings in the space offered fasters processors and had "reduced the attractiveness of the x430 for server consolidation projects".

He said the introduction of new eServer technologies meant "IBM would no longer develop new hardware and software for the x430".

IBM said it is working with about 30 customers in Australia and New Zealand to help them move other eServers, specifically IBM's 32-way p690 Unix/RISC servers or smaller four- or eight-way Intel boxes.

Support for the final releases of the Dynix/ptx Unix operating system will be maintained until December 31 2006 and the x430 will receive hardware maintenance support until December 31 2007.

"We will work closely with customers to help review their information technology requirements, and to plan and execute an orderly migration to either the IBM eServer pSeries or xSeries platform."

Steve Kerridge, president of Interaction Australasia IBM User Group, said he did not think his user group members would be affected by the decision.

"I am not sure how popular this product is - maybe that's why it was withdrawn?"

Copyright © 2002 IDG Communications, Inc.

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