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November 09, 2012

Intel Itanium Processor 9500 Has Features Well-Suited to Big Data, Mission-Critical Computing

Intel (News - Alert) appears to have developed a new series of products that have the power and other features needed for big data and mission-critical computing uses.

The Intel Itanium processor 9500 series provides over two times more power and about a third more speed compared to previous options. It also has two times the number of cores, with eight in the new version. There’s also 33 percent more bandwidth.

With that increased speed, the 9500 is well-suited for business analytics, database and large-scale enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications, according to an Intel statement.

Intel's Itanium processors are already in use in diverse sectors, such as aerospace, energy, life sciences and telecom.

Because the new series is built to avoid downtime, ERP, supply chain management and customer relationship management (CRM) software are among the targeted uses of the 9500, the company added. 

They are also seen as fitting the needs of big data.

"In a world where businesses are increasingly dependent on IT for their competitive advantage, more and more business applications are rightfully called ‘mission critical,’ they must be always available, highly responsive and extremely reliable. It's for precisely these computing workloads that we've developed the Intel Itanium 9500 processor," said Diane Bryant, vice president and general manager of Intel's Datacenter and Connected Systems Group.

The Intel Itanium processor 9500 series can be purchased now. Prices range from $1,350 to $4,650 in quantities of 1,000 units.

Several companies are making systems based on the 9500.

"The addition of the Intel Itanium processor 9500 series to our newly enhanced HP Integrity and HP-UX portfolio provides breakthrough performance, increased productivity and delivers on HP's commitment to provide our customers with investment protection," Ric Lewis, vice president and interim general manager, Business Critical Systems at Hewlett-Packard (News - Alert), said in a statement carried by TMCnet.

Intel also announced that the next-generation Intel Itanium product line, called “Kittson" by the company, will be a "Modular Development Model." It shares socket compatibility and silicon-level design.

One positive for mission-critical uses is that new versions have Instruction Replay, End-to-End Error Detection, and Cache Safe among their features, PC Magazine said. These were “cited by hardware partners Inspur and HP as drivers of their decisions to quickly develop Poulson-based products,” PC Magazine added.

In its review of the 9500, engadget said, “The chip centers around much more up-to-date, 32-nanometer Poulson architecture that doubles the cores to eight, hikes the interconnect speeds and supports as much as 2TB of RAM (News - Alert) for very (very, very) large tasks. With the help of an error-resistant buffer, Intel sees the 9500 being as much as 2.4 times faster as the Tukwila-era design it's replacing. The new Itanium also ramps the clock speeds to a relatively brisk 1.73GHz to 2.53GHz.”

There were some negative comments posted on the web about the seemingly high prices for the chips. 

Also, one blogger, called “hellouser,” noted on engadget that “Intel showed an 80 core processor SIX YEARS AGO and they’re only getting around to pumping out 8 cores on an Itanium processor? Call me when Intel releases something impressive.”

In a related matter, a judge told Oracle (News - Alert) earlier this year it had to keep on developing software for H-P's Itanium-products, even though there were reports that Intel might stop making its Itanium line. But the latest news suggests otherwise, according to PC Magazine.

Edited by Braden Becker

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