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  1. #1
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    IBM believes Intel, not AMD, is the best way to go for high-end servers

    IBM debuts new top-end Intel server

    IBM announced a new top end to its xSeries server family, a machine that accommodates as many as 32 of Intel's latest Xeon processors.

    The x460 is built using IBM's x3 chipset, which permits four-processor modules with interconnecting cables to be stacked together into a larger system. That technique means customers buying a system they might want to expand later don't have to pay for a large chassis with just a few processors.

    The machines use Intel's newest Xeon MP processor, code-named Potomac, which is geared for multiprocessor servers. It's the first such model that includes 64-bit features to easily accommodate more than 4GB of memory, and servers built for it will be able to accept a successor scheduled to arrive in early 2006 that has dual processing engines called cores.

    First versions of the x460, with either four or eight processors, will be generally available June 17, said Jay Bretzmann, a director in IBM's xSeries high-performance division. A machine with eight 3.33GHz Xeon MP processors will have a price of US$72,182. In July, customers will be able to link more of the 5.25-inch-tall cabinets together to make machines with as many as 32 processors.

    IBM's approach to the Intel server market changed in 1998, when Big Blue began work on in-house chipsets--the supporting chips that link processors together and to other computer subsystems. The x460 uses IBM's third-generation chipset for Intel servers, called the x3.

    Big Blue's strategy mirrors that of competitor Sun Microsystems, which is designing high-end servers that use a rival x86 processor: Advanced Micro Devices' Opteron. The two leaders of the x86 server market, Hewlett-Packard and Dell, both have backed away from plans for higher-end x86 servers and sell only models with four processor sockets.

    But IBM believes Intel, not AMD, is the best way to go for high-end servers.

    "We continue to evaluate whether that makes sense," Bretzmann said of IBM's Opteron evaluation. "But in the commercial space, all we would really do is confuse the sales force and maybe suboptimise our investment. We think we've made the right bet with the Intel architecture. It's the most validated, the most reliable, and customers accept it."

    Opteron has put Intel on the defensive, though. "Intel's 64-bit Xeon processors hoed a fairly tough row in a market where AMD's first-to-market Opteron processors set the pace," Pund-IT analyst Charles King said in a report Wednesday. Opteron chips introduced 64-bit support to the x86 market in 2003, and dual-core models are available today.

    IBM sells dual-processor Opteron servers for high-performance computing tasks. An Opteron blade server, the LS20, is scheduled to become available later this month.

    The x460 is a big brother to the four-processor x366 introduced in February.

    The last top-end model, called the x445, packed processors more densely--as many as eight in a 7-inch-high cabinet. The newer model takes up more space, with four processors in a 5.25-inch high cabinet, because IBM had to accommodate the heat thrown off by the dual-core Xeon processors to come, Bretzmann said.

    IBM initially said the x445 would work in 32-processor configurations, but the company only advised its use with 16 processors because of the 64GB memory limit, Bretzmann said. With the 64-bit Xeon chips, the x460 can handle as much as 512GB of memory.

    The x460 works with Red Hat Enterprise Linux 3, Suse Linux Enterprise Server 9, and server versions of Microsoft Windows. Support for the newer RHEL 4 is scheduled for the third quarter of the year.
    Source: http://au.news.yahoo.com/050531/16/uk88.html

  2. #2
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    ya, you bolded the wrong part of the article though:

    "We continue to evaluate whether that makes sense," Bretzmann said of IBM's Opteron evaluation. "But in the commercial space, all we would really do is confuse the sales force and maybe suboptimise our investment. We think we've made the right bet with the Intel architecture. It's the most validated, the most reliable, and customers accept it."


    When you're Wells Fargo or Citibank, you're more concerned with what's the proven technology, not "what's the most bang for the buck". Why do you think major corporations often still run Sparc or alpha boxes backend when price-performance they've been dead last for a LONGGGGGG time?

  3. #3
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  4. #4
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    I'm not an Intel guru. I just feel topics on this forum need some balance. :LOL:

  5. #5
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    , and customers accept it.
    Quite possibly the major reason.

    eez, theres really an AMD vs Intel war going on on these boards these days ... have we got an Intel guru aswell as an AMD one now?
    Of course, where there's one there's the other

    I wonder what will happen now that Intel has discovered their PIII core technology as used in the P-M outperforms the P4, clock for clock. Guess what the new generation P##-xxx will be using.
    "Obsolesence is just a lack of imagination."

  6. #6
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    enguard!

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  7. #7
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    Just discovered? It was never a mystery. Of course the P3 outperforms clock for clock. The P4 was designed to ramp up to much higher clock speeds to make up for the longer pipelines. There's no way they were going to ramp up the p3 to 4ghz in the current state it was in either. You can have one point for being captain obvious though.

  8. #8
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    IBM invested hundreds of millions to create a Xeon chipset called Hurricane that is supposed to be the best performing xeon chipset, however, AMD opteron is clearly ruin IBM's big investments.

    Nowadays, a HP 585 4P Opteron server beats a a 16P IBM Xeon server by a wide margin:

    www.sap.com/benchmark


    HP ProLiant DL585, 4-way SMP, Dual-core AMD Opteron processor Model 875 2.2 GHz, 128 KB L1 cache, 1 MB L2 cache

    Score: 178000

    ---

    IBM xSeries 445 Model 8870-42X, 8-way SMP, Intel Xeon MP 3.0 GHz, 20 KB L1 cache, 512 KB L2 cache, 4 MB L3 cache

    Score: 116670

    -------

    IBM xSeries 445 Model 8870-4RX, 16-way SMP, Intel Xeon MP 2.8 GHz, 20 KB L1 cache, 512 KB L2 cache, 2 MB L3 cache

    Score: 152330

    --------
    Unisys ES7000 Model Orion 540, 16-way SMP, Intel XEON MP 3.0 GHz, 20 KB L1 cache, 512 KB L2 cache, 4 MB L3 cache

    Score: 141670

    ----------
    HP Integrity Model rx7620, 8-way SMP, Intel Itanium 2 1.5 GHz, 32 KB L1 cache, 256 KB L2 cache, 6 MB L3 cache

    Score: 125000


    __________________

  9. #9
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    Ok, so a 4 processor Opteron HP DL585 beats a 16 Porcessor IBM xeon server by 20%, no wonder HP is number one in x86 servers.

    Soon, HP, SUN and other will release 8 P opteron servers. and newisys' 32 P opteron server will be out soon.

    IBM will need 64 P xeon to compete with 8P opteron.

  10. #10
    Ok, so a 4 processor Opteron HP DL585 beats a 16 Porcessor IBM xeon server by 20%, no wonder HP is number one in x86 servers.

    Soon, HP, SUN and other will release 8 P opteron servers. and newisys' 32 P opteron server will be out soon.
    In the X86 server space, which accounted for 92 percent of shipments and 49 percent of sales in the first quarter of 2005, HP racked up 480,272 servers

    In total, 92,000 Opteron systems shipped during the quarter, led by HP, with just under 12,000 shipments, and Sun, which sold nearly 9,000 Opteron servers.
    And I thought I had a comprehension problem. HP sold 480,000 servers 12,000 were Opterons... I wonder what the other 468,000 servers were??

  11. #11
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    Originally posted by ikeo
    And I thought I had a comprehension problem. HP sold 480,000 servers 12,000 were Opterons... I wonder what the other 468,000 servers were??
    I think they sold 480,00 computers not just servers. and out of those 12,000 were opteron servers.
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  12. #12
    now we are going to have an amd vs intel flame war for the next 2 months

  13. #13
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    Not much else to do, those amd servers are nice and stable.
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  14. #14
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    Originally posted by ikeo
    And I thought I had a comprehension problem. HP sold 480,000 servers 12,000 were Opterons... I wonder what the other 468,000 servers were??
    Granted, there are still a lot uninformed people paying big bucks for outdated INTEL junk.


    According to 2005 Q1 server data, 92,000 opteron server were sold, in comparion, close to 800,000 xeon servers were sold. So, Opteron has 10%. However, in 4 Processor server market, AMD has 20% market share.


    I admire HP a lot, this is a company of integrity, they don't lie. HP has a lot of investment on Itanium servers, but HP release various benchmarks showing their Opteron servers beating their own Itanium servers. Of course, HP's Opteron servers beats HP's Xeon servers by a wider margin.

    HP is also smart, those stupid INTEL fan boys will buy XEON no matter what, those smarter guys will buy Opteron, HP offers them all.

    Sun Microsystems, on the other hand, has completely eliminated their xeon server line and went 100% Opteron. Sun is a pure engineering company.

    see http://www.sun.com/aboutsun/media/features/insidejack3/


    Being a customer and being an fan boy of a tech underdog like INTEL is foolish. We are not working for either intel or AMD. For me, I just support who is the best, and I feel strong digust about INTEL's low ball marketing stuff, it's 100% unethical. You can't trust unethical companies.

    http://www.vanshardware.com/articles...l_Subverts.htm

  15. #15
    http://www.webhostingtalk.com/showth...hreadid=408781

    Here's the original thread, no its not total computers, that's just the server division. 12,000 opterons sold from the server division. The question still remains, what is the other 468,000 servers HP sold? I'm willing to bet they aren't AMD. After all it clearly states that 12,000 servers were AMD's

    Which if my math is correct only accounts for 2.5% of HP's total server units sold..

  16. #16
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    Originally posted by wm2100
    Ok, so a 4 processor Opteron HP DL585 beats a 16 Porcessor IBM xeon server by 20%, no wonder HP is number one in x86 servers.

    Soon, HP, SUN and other will release 8 P opteron servers. and newisys' 32 P opteron server will be out soon.

    IBM will need 64 P xeon to compete with 8P opteron.
    Uhhhh... that benchmark is more than slightly messed up.

    An 8p xeon scores 110k, a 16p xeon system scores 140k. If that doesn't set off alarms for you I guess it's a lost cause. You don't even post the full benchmarks. What o/s? What db? What is the underlying chipset?

  17. #17
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    I have a super quintuple sextet opteron ...

    seriously

    1) 1/2 of you will never be able to afford a quad xeon
    2) It's impracticaal to talk about these things

    this horse hsa been beaten to death, revived and beaten again

    "ANIMAL CRUELTY!"

    but yeah what is the point of talking about this?
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  18. #18
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    Gee and I thought the irony might be amusing, oh well

    Now if I can get this 8-way 900MHz Alpha workstation to boot ...
    "Obsolesence is just a lack of imagination."

  19. #19
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    Oh God, now we've got an Intel faboy too.

    Stop, STOP ALREADY!!

  20. #20
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    Originally posted by seraph1
    Uhhhh... that benchmark is more than slightly messed up.

    An 8p xeon scores 110k, a 16p xeon system scores 140k. If that doesn't set off alarms for you I guess it's a lost cause. You don't even post the full benchmarks. What o/s? What db? What is the underlying chipset?
    16P xeon 140K, 8P xeon 110K, this shows Xeon is not scalable, the limited FSB is the bottleneck.

    8P xeon or 16P xeon, doesnt matter, 4P Opteron HP DL585 gets a score of 178K.

    The full benchmark disclosure is on the link I gave, http://www.sap.com/benchmark , remember these benchmarks are submitted by the vendors themselves, so it must be tuned to the best...

  21. #21
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    Originally posted by The Broadband Man
    I have a super quintuple sextet opteron ...

    seriously

    1) 1/2 of you will never be able to afford a quad xeon
    2) It's impracticaal to talk about these things

    95% of us can afford a 4P opteron.

    Xeon is expensive, 35K is too much.

    You can get 4way opteron for $5000

  22. #22
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    Show me quad xeon for 5k ....

    I'm not talking about 2 x Dual Core opteron...
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  23. #23
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    Originally posted by wm2100
    16P xeon 140K, 8P xeon 110K, this shows Xeon is not scalable, the limited FSB is the bottleneck.

    8P xeon or 16P xeon, doesnt matter, 4P Opteron HP DL585 gets a score of 178K.

    The full benchmark disclosure is on the link I gave, http://www.sap.com/benchmark , remember these benchmarks are submitted by the vendors themselves, so it must be tuned to the best...
    WRONG, if you go through those benchmarks, on your own damn page, every single test I saw the 16p was double the 8p in every category. You just picked and chose what you wanted the results to show.

  24. #24
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    Originally posted by The Broadband Man
    Show me quad xeon for 5k ....

    I'm not talking about 2 x Dual Core opteron...
    I believe you mean quad opteron.

  25. #25
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    Originally posted by The Broadband Man
    Show me quad xeon for 5k ....

    I'm not talking about 2 x Dual Core opteron...
    4 opteron 846
    1GB ram
    1 10K drive
    800062 - 24/7 Tech Support + Plus 3 Year (Onsite W

    total $5600

    I bet you can bargain a bit and get a couple hundred off.

    As for memory and disk, I suggest you sell the xeon servers you have for $2K a piece to intel fans here and use the money to buy 8GB of memory.


    ---------------


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    Rack Mount: 100457 - PS 700W - AIC RMC2G2-T82-SS 2U Rack Mount $750.00 $750.00
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    Processor: 120899 - AMD Opteron 846 2.0GHz 1MB 64/32 Bit $677.00 $677.00
    2nd Processor: 120899 - AMD Opteron 846 2.0GHz 1MB 64/32 Bit $677.00 $677.00
    3rd Processor: 120899 - AMD Opteron 846 2.0GHz 1MB 64/32 Bit $677.00 $677.00
    4th Processor: 120899 - AMD Opteron 846 2.0GHz 1MB 64/32 Bit $677.00 $677.00
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  26. #26
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    I bought quite some gear from monarch, I can say the quality of their server assemly is very high, rock solid. They use the best parts. Those AIC rackmount chassises are not cheap one.

  27. #27
    These CPUs must produce a hell of alot of heat!

  28. #28
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    Actually, the 90nm Opterons are rated at 67 watts. So 4x will be 280 watts. Older 130nm opterons are rated at 89 watts. There is also the HE version available at 55 watts.

    In comparison, an INTEL xeon 3.6GHZ produces 150 watts maximum

  29. #29
    I bought quite some gear from monarch, I can say the quality of their server assemly is very high, rock solid. They use the best parts. Those AIC rackmount chassises are not cheap one.
    You could've at least gone with the Transport GX28, you wasted your money.

    Its not about Intel loving... If you haven't noticed, a lot of people have both AMD and Intel computers or have had them at one point in time. People who actually work with the equipment don't love their equipment like you do... Is your site up? What are you doing with all that power? Is it in your room?

    Running game servers? webhosting? personal desktop? Why do you need all that power in 1 box? Are you hosting a mini-mainframe in your house?

    Even you yourself said servers utilize 10% of their processing power. How much of your processing power do you use? I'm willing to wager its less than .5% actual load.

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  31. #31
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    Originally posted by ikeo

    Even you yourself said servers utilize 10% of their processing power. How much of your processing power do you use? I'm willing to wager its less than .5% actual load.
    You must prepare for some room to grow, so right now my servers are not so busy, but once the flood starts, can it hold it?

    One big server is much easier to manage than multiple small servers. It might be less expensive too.

    AMD really opens the door for us to have powerful consolidated severs at affordable prices.

  32. #32
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    Originally posted by wm2100
    One big server is much easier to manage than multiple small servers. It might be less expensive too.

    AMD really opens the door for us to have powerful consolidated severs at affordable prices. [/B]
    Having one big server also puts you at the most risk. You have one big server if anything happens to it you're screwed.

    I agree AMD is a competitive product and both companies have their strengths. In the end a price war means that we win by lower prices for quality components.
    Patron: I'd like my free lunch please.
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  33. #33
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    "One big server is much easier to manage than multiple small servers. It might be less expensive too. "

    Single point of failure. Bad planning unless you have a spare machine running the exact same config or have a bare metal disaster recovery plan that allows for you to get that one machine up (assuming its a non critical software or hardware failure) in minimal time. Generally in a hosting type situation TCO on one server going down and taking your business out as opposed to one of a farm makes the "easier to manage" a moot point.

    If a sysadmin is good the machines are also set up identically so most tasks can be scripted to minimize hands on management. Note most of the people who have been running viable businesses (who are still in business) dont really mind whether its Intel or AMD. Do you have a spare 4way opteron whatever it is to replace the one you have up and running now (assuming you do. Insert whatever hardware you happen to be running if not) if the one you have now happens to get struck by lightning (again, insert any act of god here viable to your situation)? I'll keep running my dual Xeons until AMD has proven itself not on a silly benchmark but in terms of overall stability in the enterprise. Considering I remember how crappy AMD chipsets used to be once upon a time, I'll say they have definitly made gains, but I still only trust them about as far as I trust maxtor.

  34. #34
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    Originally posted by nadtz
    "One big server is much easier to manage than multiple small servers. It might be less expensive too. "

    Single point of failure. Bad planning unless you have a spare machine running the exact same config or have a bare metal disaster recovery plan that allows for you to get that one machine up (assuming its a non critical software or hardware failure) in minimal time. Generally in a hosting type situation TCO on one server going down and taking your business out as opposed to one of a farm makes the "easier to manage" a moot point.

    I disagree with this post,

    Anyone running a high quality server with hot swap should have spares. Assuming this and problem with a server should take 1-30 minutes max to repair including a mainboard failure.

    A single point of failure is always better then multiple points of failure with cheap low quality equipment. A well-built server with hot swap is going to be better then a farm of cheap low quality equipment any day. Calculate the amount of down time with a dozen or so low quality boxes. think about how much less down time over all you would have with one main server that has hot swap.

    Now if you have the money, a whole lot of money that maybe at most 5% of the people on these forums could afford to put into high quality cluster including the software and custom programming then yes a cluster would be better.

    Running a single server has many pro's such as:

    - Single software licensing costs for enterprise grade software. (overall cost of software is less in most cases)

    - Single point of management for clients. (client management can be done faster from one server interface, even with a control panel admin's will usually need to login to each server from time to time)

    - Single point of management for server software. (cost of admin for security & software updates)

    - Higher quality equipment in most cases has less maintenance and less chance of failure.

    - No need to move high usage clients off to there own server.

    - Single server with hot swap offers redundancy unlike cheaper servers with 1 power supply etc.

    - Overall speed, a high end server will out perform low end boxes. (Admin should be smart enough to set limits for exploiting server resources)

    - And of course the cool factor. My server is bigger then your server.

    And the Con's:

    - Not a great solution for low budget projects.

    - You can't spread out over multiple data center in case of natural disasters.


    I'm sure I'm missing some pro's and con's but those are the ones that come to mind
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  35. #35
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    Originally posted by pixelized
    Having one big server also puts you at the most risk. You have one big server if anything happens to it you're screwed.

    I agree AMD is a competitive product and both companies have their strengths. In the end a price war means that we win by lower prices for quality components.
    I'm sure to the AMD Warrior one big server is good enough. I'm sure to him, Opterons are indestructable to things such as harddrive failures, ram going bad, even though an Opteron is just a processor, nothing can destroy a 4P Opteron.

    That is the most ridiculous thing I've seen you say yet wm2001, get a brain. Multiple servers allows you to make each do a specific task thus decreasing the overall load and allowing some sort of failover.
    Shawn R. Lockheart

  36. #36
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    One big server allows you to optimize resources for fault tolerance. If your server has only 2 drives, the only thing you can do is raid 1, resulting in 50% disk utilization.

    Opteron is pretty much indestructable, that chip is rock solid, and with NX bit, I have 0 fear of worms and buffer overflow attacks, with reg ecc ram and chipkill, the rate of system collapse is very tiny. With multiple processors and cpu cores, you can have better system response under heavy load. In small server approach, one small server can easily get overloaded. On HDD, I can use raid5 on 4 drives and have 75% disk utilization.

    Best of all, you save a lot of work managing many small servers.

  37. #37
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    Final summary for this thread:
    1) Orginal poster posted a news message showing IBM selling a upgraded version of its X455 server line, the X460, upgrading from a 3GHZ/4MB xeon processor to a 3.33GHZ/4MN xeon processor.

    2) Benchmarks show that a 4P HP DL585 opteron server outperforms the 16P IBM X455 by 20%. These benchmark results are supplied by HP and IBM respectively and represent best results.

    3) It unlikely that IBM's X460, with a 10% clockspeed increase can overcome this huge performance gap.

  38. #38
    One big server allows you to optimize resources for fault tolerance.

    I have 0 fear of worms and buffer overflow attacks, with reg ecc ram and chipkill, the rate of system collapse is very tiny.
    Now you've exposed that you obviously don't know what you're talking about... Everything on 1 machine is not fault tolerant... Your definition needs to be put into perspective... If you've worked with multiple systems you'd know right away how silly your statement sounds...

    Best of all, you save a lot of work managing many small servers.
    Anyone that can do basic shell scripting can automate tasks. 1 server or 100 makes no difference if you know what you're doing. If you were managing a server farm, you'd be screwed royally.

    AMD really opens the door for us to have powerful consolidated severs at affordable prices.
    This is the only thing I can agree with you on, but power without planning and a purpose is a waste of resources...

  39. #39
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    Ikeo, I was not talking about putting everything on one mainframe, ok?
    what I am saying is instead of using many tiny small boxes, use fewer bigger boxes.

  40. #40
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    1) What kind of person builds a quad Opteron and only puts a single SATA drive in it and 1GB RAM? That's like playing Solitare on Earth Simulator, it's a complete mis-match.

    2) Multiple servers are always preferable over one large system - You do not in theory have multiple points of failure, because if they work in parallel then you are actually reducing the probability of a complete failure.

    3) Benchmarks - As I've said before, they rarely reflect real world performance, and the ones you posted, again I shall point out, have differing amounts of RAM and I believe from memory, were using different OS and underlying DB.
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