11:43 AM

Intel Ramps Up Schedule To Ship Dual-Core Xeon Server Chips This Year

Intel will ship its first full-featured dual-core processors for servers as it anticipates the majority of shipments moving to dual-core by late 2006.

Intel is accelerating its dual-core Xeon plans, and will introduce new versions of the processors for both two-processor servers and systems with four or more processors before the end of the year. These are Intel's first full-featured dual-core processors for servers.

Originally scheduled for release in 2006, Intel says it will introduce a dual-core Xeon MP processor, code-named Paxville, for servers with four or more processors later this year. The dual-core processors will deliver more than 60% better performance over Intel's previous generation single-core Xeon MP processor, and will use Intel's E8500 chipset.

Intel also plans to ship a version of Xeon for two-processor systems, code named Paxville DP, later this year. That processor will deliver up to 50% improved performance over the previous generation Xeon DP single core offering, and will use the Intel E7520 chipset.

Intel's main rival Advanced Micro Devices Inc. has been shipping dual-core versions of its Opteron processor for server applications since spring.

Intel has previously introduced dual-core versions of its Pentium processor line for PC applications, as well as the dual-core Pentium D, which is being used in some low-cost server applications.

Paxville DP is targeted at early adopters and companies evaluating dual-core technology. A broader family of dual-core Xeon-based platforms, codenamed Bensley for servers and Glidewell for workstations, is scheduled in the first quarter of 2006.

"Intel engineers have executed exquisitely, and because of that we'll bring our dual-core Intel Xeon processor platforms to the marketplace well ahead of schedule," said Kirk Skaugen, general manager of Intel's server platforms group, in a statement.

Intel says it has 17 multicore processor projects under development, and expects that more than 85% of its server volume exiting 2006 to be multicore processors. AMD has said it believes that more than 90% of its processors shipped by the end of next year will be dual-core.

Both Dell and Hewlett-Packard insiders said Monday that they intend to offer systems based on the dual-core Xeons this year.

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