Hewlett Packard confirmed today that it will introduce an eight way system next Monday that will have the full support logic and chipset for the Merced processor.
But until a Merced processor arrives, in mid 2000, the system will use PA Risc chips, said Hugh Jenkins, server manager at HP UK.
He said: "We're now close to releasing a machine which will be the first properly ready Merced machine."
"It will begin with a PA Risc chip but will have support logic built in which will give Merced support when the microprocessor arrives. From our understanding, that is still on target for the middle of next year," he said.
HP had an inherent advantage because of its close co-operation with Intel since 1994 on the IA-64 platform, he claimed.
"That knowledge was always going to allow us to build chipsets earlier," he said.
The eight way system will have a standard configuration apart from the microprocessor complex, said Jenkins. That will come on a module that will allow swapping of the PA Risc processors with Merced.
"It will support standard things like the PCI bus," he said. "The premise is that it is truly IA-64 ready."
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