IBM Adds Powerful New Systems, Storage & Graphics Options For RISC System 6000 Line

Enhances Sp2 Parallel Computer

SOMERS, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 7, 1995--IBM today announced new offerings in its RISC System/6000(a) (RS/6000(a)) line that provide customers with improved desktop performance, a greater range of storage and graphics options, and new software that enhances performance and connectivity.

In addition, IBM announced price and performance improvements for its Scalable POWERparallel Systems SP2(a), the high-end of the RS/6000 line that provides the blazing speed of parallel computing inexpensively. For example, price/performance will improve by over 15 percent for both scientific/technical and commercial customers.

Today's announcements include:

o The world's fastest desktop workstation under $40,000. This new POWER2 microprocessor-based workstation offers customers a 30 percent performance boost over the previous top-of-the-line RS/6000 desktop system;

o A POWER2-based numeric intensive computing server that delivers a greater than 25 percent increase in performance over the existing RS/6000 high-performance desktop server;

o The Xstation 160, the new industry performance leader and the industry's first PowerPC 603-based X-terminal;

o A new tape storage option designed for high-capacity, high-performance backup of disk drives and network servers;

o Enhancements to IBM's clustering software that create one of the richest high-availability offerings in the UNIX(b) industry.

The RS/6000 systems announced today will run AIX(a) Version 4 and preserve binary compatibility with existing RS/6000 systems. AIX Version 4 is the newest version of IBM's industry-leading operating system that offers a state-of-the-art, scalable UNIX platform that supports IBM's PowerPC(a), POWER2 and POWER-based RS/6000 servers and client workstations. AIX Version 4 has recently been branded XPG4 base-compliant by X/Open Limited(b) and is on target to provide support for the newly finalized Single UNIX Specification (formerly known as SPEC 1170) in a future release.

AIX Version 3.2.5 is also supported on the new RS/6000 and SP2 systems, protecting customer and software developer investments in RS/6000 technology and allowing users to smoothly transition to AIX Version 4 at their own pace.

"Today's RS/6000 and SP2 announcements are a continuation of our commitment to expand the RS/6000 family to offer the widest range of options to meet our customers' computing needs," said Jeff Mason, vice president, Worldwide Marketing, IBM RISC System/6000 Division. "The breadth of the RS/6000 product line, coupled with our industry leading microprocessor technology, powerful AIX operating system and unequaled service and support, deliver the total customer solution that no other vendor can provide."

The RS/6000 family of workstations and servers provides commercial and technical customers with a powerful solution to meet their most demanding needs. From entry desktop systems to robust deskside and rack-mounted offerings, to the newest symmetric multiprocessor servers, to the high-end, high-performance SP2, the RS/6000 and AIX operating system deliver outstanding value and performance. A wide range of IBM and third-party software products are available to support industry-specific requirements as well as general computing needs such as database, distributed transaction processing and network management.

The ability to deliver total customer solutions with market leading technology has positioned IBM as a leader in the open systems industry. Preliminary 1994 results published by leading market research firm IDC name IBM the worldwide UNIX midrange systems leader and the worldwide commercial UNIX midrange systems leader, based on revenue. IBM has shipped over 350,000 RS/6000 systems to customers around the world.

Announcement Details

New POWER2-based Systems: - RISC System/6000 Model 3CT: Powered by a 67 MHz POWER2 microprocessor that brings supercomputer-class performance to a desktop workstation, the Model 3CT is the world's fastest workstation under $40,000. It is also the fastest desktop system in the RS/6000 line. A SPECfp92(c) rating of 266.6 and a SPECint92(c) rating of 130.2, when using the optional 2MB Level 2 (L2) cache, deliver a floating-point performance increase of 30 percent over IBM's existing top-of-the-line desktop workstation. Customers in fields like electronic circuit simulation, structural analysis and computational chemistry, who need strong floating-point performance to solve complex problems, will be able to achieve new levels of productivity with this powerful workstation. The Model 3CT, with POWER graphics accelerators, supports all key 3D graphics Application Programming Interface's (API's) including OpenGL, PEX and graPHIGS. In addition, customers can choose from the most extensive range of graphics options, including the POWER GXT150M, GXT1000 and Evans & Sutherland Freedom Series(b) 6000, as well as the POWER Gt4e, Gt4i, and Gt4xi.

Standard features for the 3CT include 64 MB of memory, expandable to 512 MB, 1 gigabyte (GB) of internal disk, expandable to 18 GB, POWER GXT150M graphics adapter, POWERdisplay 17(2), 32 kilobyte (KB) Level 1 (L1) instruction cache, 128 KB L1 data cache, integrated small computer systems interface-2 (SCSI-2(a)) fast/wide controller, integrated Ethernet, three available Micro Channel(a) slots, two 5.25-inch half-high media bays, 1.44 MB, 3.5-inch diskette drive, two serial and one parallel port.

With a wide range of options available, including additional graphics accelerators, displays, and a 1MB or 2MB L2 cache, the 3CT is a solution that will meet customer needs today, and grow as their computing needs grow. - IBM RISC System/6000 Model 39H: This powerful new system, driven by a 67 MHz POWER2 microprocessor, takes its place as IBM's top-of-the-line desktop UNIX server. With a LINPACK TPP(3) number of 231.3, the 39H is over 25 percent faster than the previous high-end RS/6000 desktop server. This powerful system is designed to meet the needs of users in numeric-intensive computing (NIC) disciplines such as seismic processing and analysis or fluid dynamics, where powerful data crunching capability is critical in meeting customer needs.

Couple the awesome power of the 39H with IBM's High Availability Cluster Multi-Processing/6000(a) (HACMP/6000(a)) software, and it's easy to imagine a cluster of these powerful systems solving a customers' most complex NIC problems at a very affordable price.

Standard features include 64 MB of memory, expandable to 512 MB, 2 GB of disk, expandable to 13.5 GB, 32 KB L1 instruction cache, 128 KB L1 data cache, optional 1 MB or 2MB L2 cache, integrated SCSI-2 fast/wide controller, integrated Ethernet, four available Micro Channel slots, two 5.25-inch half-high media bays -- one with a CD-ROM-2 drive -- one 1.44 MB 3.5-inch diskette drive, two serial and one parallel port.

With optional L2 cache, SPECfp92 and SPECint92 for the 39H are 266.6 and 130.2, respectively.

Both the Model 3CT and Model 39H incorporate a full implementation of the POWER2 Architecture(a), enabling the systems to include a number of new features previously unavailable in earlier desktop workstations and servers. New capabilities include a doubling of the systems memory bus from a 64-bit path to a 128-bit path, an increase in the L1 data cache from 64KB to 128KB and a larger L2 cache than was previously available in high-end desktop systems. These new features can greatly increase system performance for memory intensive applications like simulation or computational analysis.

New PowerPC-based XStation: - IBM Xstation 160: The first IBM product to incorporate a PowerPC 603 microprocessor -- and the first PowerPC-based X-terminal in the industry -- this local area network (LAN) attached X-terminal sets a new standard for performance in the X-terminal industry. With a score of 5 Xmark93(1), the Xstation 160 bests its closest competitor, NCD(b), by 25 percent on the standard X11perf industry benchmark.

Standard features include a 66 megahertz (MHz) PowerPC 603 microprocessor with separate on-chip data and instruction cache, allowing for increased processing performance. It also comes standard with 8 megabytes (MB) of dynamic random access memory (DRAM), expandable to 96 MB, 2 MB of flash memory expandable up to 22 MB, 2 MB of video random access memory (VRAM) that support the rich set of screen resolutions (up to 1600x1280 pixels), that customers demand and many competitors cannot provide. Optional features include 4 MB of VRAM that supports 24-bit true color, an audio adapter card and a 3.5-inch floppy disk drive for easy data storage and transportability. An improved graphical set-up makes the Xstation 160 easier for systems administrators to use and maintain.

The Xstation 160 also incorporates a new compact design (12"x 12"x 2.75"), a key advantage in customer environments where desktop real estate is at a premium. This new compact design, coupled with the energy-efficient PowerPC 603 microprocessor, enable the Xstation 160 to be Energy Star Compliant.

IBM POWERparallel SP2:

Today's POWERparallel announcements include a new, RS/6000-based processor for the IBM SP2 that offers higher "number crunching" performance than its current counterpart, and offers computational performance comparable to the most powerful SP2 processor at a lower price. This new "breadbox-size" Thin Node 2 processor fits inside an SP2 cabinet. It features a faster data-flow design than the current entry-level processor -- "The Thin Node" -- and provides up to 40 percent improved performance for many applications relying on numeric-intensive computing, such as designing drugs, simulating automobile and airplane acoustics, and predicting where to drill for oil. IBM has also reduced the price for its current entry-level "Thin Node" to the lowest level ever, enabling customers eager to enter the world of UNIX parallel processing to purchase an SP2 for under $138,000. This new low price provides over 10 percent improved price/performance for commercial applications such as transaction serving. IBM has also made available an optional L2 cache -- or temporary storage area -- for the "Thin Node" processor that improves performance over 15 percent.

In addition, IBM announced that initial installations have begun for POWERquery for the SP2(a), a cost-effective, large-scale decision support solution for business. The power and flexibility of POWERquery's parallel processing capabilities will enable customers to extract strategic information from vast amounts of accumulated data. Volume shipments will begin this summer. POWERquery is a set of highly scalable and flexible building blocks of IBM hardware, software -- including IBM's new parallel relational database, DATABASE 2(a) Parallel Edition for AIX -- and consulting services that can be tailored to satisfy a customer's specific large database and decision support needs.

New SP2 Software Enhancements: - AIX High Availability Cluster Multi-Processing/6000 Version 3.1.1 (HACMP/6000 3.1.1): This latest version brings the benefits of high-availability and clustering, features which have been very successful for RS/6000 customers, to the POWERparallel platform.

HACMP/6000 3.1.1 allows up to eight SP2 nodes to be configured into a highly available cluster to eliminate single points of failure. This is a necessity for customers like banks and retail stores where business-critical on-line transaction processing applications cannot afford to be down for any appreciable length of time.

This new version creates one of the richest high availability offerings in the UNIX marketplace, all without incurring the added expense of fully redundant hardware, and offers customers unmatched flexibility in designing the systems that best meet their performance requirements.

Additionally, this new version has been enhanced to provide concurrent data access between HACMP cluster modes for IBM's industry-leading distributed transaction processing applications, the Customer Information Control System (CICS(a)) and Encina.

New Storage Systems Offering: - IBM 7331 8 millimeter (mm) Tape Library Model 205: The 7331 Model 205, which incorporates physical and software locks for enhanced data security, is designed for high-capacity, high-performance backup of disk drives and network servers. It is especially useful for applications such as image and document retrieval, automatic migration of data between disk storage and tape, and archiving of data to tape.

The 7331 is packaged as a standalone deskside unit with one or two 8mm tape drives. With a maximum storage capacity of up to 280 GB if IBM's Improved Data Recording Capability (IDRC) data compression is used, it offers the largest capacity in the industry for comparably priced 8mm tape libraries.

An optional electronics feature provides the 7331 with enhanced flexibility when shared by multiple host processors. It also supports off-line tape-to-tape copying, mirroring and use of a bar-code label printer. A bar-code reader is also available as an option.

New Graphics Accelerator: - IBM POWER GXT150P Graphics Adapter for RISC System/6000 Model 40P: This new eight-bit graphics adapter brings the advanced 2D technology available in IBM's powerful workstations to the Peripheral Component Interconnect (PCI)-based Model 40P, and will give users the highest level of 2D graphics performance available on IBM's powerful entry workstation.

Designed to meet the needs of customers in fields from desktop publishing to 2D mechanical drafting, the POWER GXT150P stands alone as a powerful 2D accelerator. Coupled with IBM's Softgraphics capability, which gives users the ability to run OpenGL, PEX and PHIGS, the POWER GXT150P-based Model 40P offers customers the lowest priced entry 3D graphics offering in the RS/6000 line.

The POWER GXT150P attaches to the Model 40P using one slot on the PCI bus. It supports a wide range of display resolutions as well as IBM PC displays and IBM POWERdisplays.