IBM unveils Netfinity servers

New models target departmental, datacentre applications

On Tuesday, IBM unveiled two new Netfinity four-way machines that the company says are designed as Windows 2000 servers. IBM is targeting the Netfinity 7100 toward distributed or remote locations, while the Netfinity 7600 is positioned as a datacentre server, according to Alex Yost, IBM's manager of product marketing for Netfinity.

Both models reflect IBM's X-architecture initiative, which seeks to provide mainframe-like reliability and performance features on Intel-based servers. The Netfinity 7600 server, for example, offers IBM's ActivePCI technology as a standard feature. ActivePCI provides hot-swap/hot-add capabilities that allow technicians to replace failed PCI adapters or install additional ones without shutting down the server. In addition, IBM's Chipkill memory protection technology comes as standard on the Netfinity 7600's memory card. ActivePCI and Chipkill are optional features for the Netfinity 7100. IBM claims Chipkill memory is 100 times more reliable than ECC memory.

The company also announced refreshes of older server lines, including the Netfinity 4000R. In addition, IBM will introduce the Netfinity 1000 to the US market. The uniprocessor server has an entry price point of $1,344 (£833), Yost said. The product had previously been available overseas. Yost sees the Netfinity 1000 as suitable for small business and retail point-of-sale applications.

The new servers and upgraded models will all ship by the end of March.

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