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SGI Breaks Another Windows Record

Chalk up another one for SGI. Less than two weeks after announcing Microsoft certification to run Windows Server 2008 Release 2 (R2) on 128 physical cores and 1 TB of memory, SGI has come back to announce it has now been certified for 256 cores and 2 TB of memory, and there’s more to come.

In mid-March, SGI (NASDAQ: SGI) announced it had received Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) certification for its Altix UV Intel Xeon processor-driven system. The company claimed that it was the largest certified system running Windows Server 2008 R2 to date.

At the time, David "Sunny" Sundstrom, SGI's director of software product marketing, told InternetNews.com that the company was working to double the size of the certified system by the end of the first quarter.

Now, SGI is back with that second certification, a week earlier than it had predicted.

"We're the only platform that's ever scaled as high as Windows Server was designed for," Sundstrom told InternetNews.com this week.

"The certification tests were run on an SGI Altix UV, which runs Intel Xeon processors using out-of-the-box Microsoft-certified Windows Server, Microsoft-based applications and Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2, with data warehousing and data mining tools built with Business Intelligence Development Studio," an SGI statement said.

In fact, SGI isn't done. The company is working to push the limits of its current system architecture, which can accept some 2,000 physical cores and 16 TB, according to Sundstrom. "Another [architecture] is being designed for 4,000 cores," he added.

SGI has had its ups and downs in the past, including providing the technology that brought the dinosaurs of "Jurassic Park" to life. However, the company's fortunes have waned since those heady days, and the company was acquired last year by Rackable Systems, which retained the name. Rackable specialized in high-density rack-mounted systems, while SGI focused on building massively scalable Intel-based systems

For those IT organizations that just can't wait, the newly-certified systems are currently available.

Stuart J. Johnston is a contributing editor at InternetNews.com, the news service of Internet.com, the network for technology professionals. Follow him on Twitter @stuartj1000.