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6/25/2002
02:51 PM
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Nasdaq Switching To Dell From HP

The proprietary nature of HP's NonStop servers is pushing the exchange into the Wintel camp.

The Nasdaq is backing off its bullish stance on Hewlett-Packard's high-end NonStop servers--just a week after the exchange revealed it's putting HP's new NonStop S86000 through beta tests.

Speaking Tuesday at a Dell marketing event in New York City, Nasdaq CIO Steven Randich said he's turning to Intel-based servers for key applications and planning to switch from the NonStop system after completing Nasdaq's current four-year commitment with HP.

The NonStop, formerly known as Compaq Himalaya, is a reliable platform, Randich said, but it's becoming harder and more expensive to find talented programmers who can write for the proprietary computers. "Total cost is a reason to move to a more open platform like Wintel," he said.

Nasdaq is fast approaching the July 29 debut of its SuperMontage trading platform, three years and $100 million in the making. SuperMontage is designed to improve Nasdaq's electronic order-execution and order-delivery systems for large orders. It's also supposed to consolidate transactions between electronic communications networks, market makers, and market participants. This consolidation would give brokers more detailed investment data, which should help them better analyze and predict stock movement.

SuperMontage was built on a group of Compaq Himalaya servers. But Nasdaq, which uses more than 600 Dell servers to support its various Web sites, wants to see Dell take on a greater role in the stock exchange's online-trading systems. Said Randich, "We're absolutely committed to Himalaya for the next three or four years, but we're also betting on Wintel."

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