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Fujitsu SPARCs Lineup

Fujitsu's chipmaking division released a new SPARC64-based processor this week that brings the company closer to its destiny with Sun Microsystems .

The Silicon Valley-based division of the Japanese electronics conglomerate said its new SPARC64 V would ship before September for use in UNIX-based servers, especially 8-way, 16-way and 32-way configurations. The next-generation SPARC64 also incorporates 3 MB on-chip second-level cache.

The company said it plans to use the new 1.89 GHz chip in its PRIMEPOWER 650, 850, 900 and 1500 server models.

Built using 90-nanometer (nm) process technology, the new processor can also be mixed and matched with previous generations of the SPARC64 chips in the same system for the PRIMEPOWER 900, 1500 and 2500 models.

Fujitsu said it is also using the silicon to develop core concepts and develop templates -- or pre-verified solutions -- that will serve as functional building blocks for its TRIOLE strategy (virtualization, automation and integration) in servers, storage, networks and middleware elements.

The introduction of the SPARC64 V processor comes on the heels of the enterprise-focused partnership with Sun Microsystems.

Fujitsu and Sun said they will bring together Fujitsu's SPARC64 and Sun's UltraSPARC product lines by mid-2006 in a program dubbed the Advanced Product Line or APL. Both chips are based on Sun's open SPARC V9 instruction set architecture. The new data center systems family will include Sun's Sun Fire hardware and Fujitsu's PRIMEPOWER products.

"Its arrival demonstrates our consistent technology leadership in the open systems marketplace and moves us even closer to the realization of solutions for the Fujitsu and Sun Microsystems Advance Product Line collaboration," Richard McCormack, Fujitsu vice president of product and solutions marketing, said in a statement.

The new chip already has a following. The Chicago Board of Options Exchange (CBOE) said it would use the RISC processor in its PRIMEPOWER servers as soon as it is available.

"In handling more than 51 percent of all the options trading in the United States and 91 percent of the index options trading, we needed a platform robust and reliable enough to handle the millions of transactions processed each day on CBOEdirect, CBOE's Hybrid Trading System," Curt Schumacher, CBOE CTO, said in a statement.

Because it is SPARC-based, the new processor is a natural fit for running Solaris or Java-based applications. The company said it performed 35 to 42 percent better over its predecessor when running the Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation Java Business Benchmark 2000. That system processed an unprecedented 663,133 transactions per second, Sun said.