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ALR joins Pentium server fray

Advanced Logic Research launches low-end Pentium servers and girds itself to do battle with server giants Compaq and Hewlett-Packard.

Advanced Logic Research (AALR) is launching low-end Pentium servers as it girds itself to do battle with server giants Compaq and Hewlett-Packard, which have become very aggressive in bringing out inexpensive servers of their own.

ALR's new Revolution MP II Pentium servers will start as low as $2,195 with a 133-MHz Pentium processor and no hard drive; Compaq recently introduced the ProSignia 200 priced at $1,983 with a 166-MHz Pentium processor and a 1.6GB hard disk drive.

But ALR says that its MP II systems come much closer to being a full-fledged server since they support up to two MMX Pentium processors and offer up to seven PCI slots for add-in PCI circuit boards such as network cards. The Compaq systems support only one processor, do not use the MMX Pentium, and offer only three PCI slots. PCI is a high-performance data path, or "bus," used in almost all PCs today.

ALR is also offering systems with 166- and 200-MHz MMX Pentium processors for $2,495 and $2,895, respectively. These configurations do not include hard disk drives. All systems are equipped with 512K of additional or "secondary" cache memory.

The new Revolution MP II+ servers are geared to small- to medium-sized office environments running Windows NT, ALR said.

Additional options for the open slots in the systems include hard disk SCSI controllers and RAID controllers for disk drive arrays.

The Revolution MP II+ is managed by ALR InforManager, which uses integrated sensors to monitor system and processor temperatures, fan operation, system voltage, memory faults, and chassis security.

InforManager also supports local and remote software monitoring through Microsoft Windows NT and Novell NetWare applets.