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IBM introduces Power6 chip

Featured in a new server line, Power6 designed to operate at twice the speed but at same energy level as Big Blue's Power5+ chip.

IBM on Monday introduced its Power6 microprocessors and a new generation of Unix-based servers to run on the chip.

Power6 is designed to run at 4.7GHz, twice the processing speed of IBM's predecessor Power5+ chip. IBM not only aims to double the processing speed over the Power5 chip, but also consume the same level of electricity to run and cool it.

Big Blue, as previously reported, said it will begin selling IBM p570 Unix servers with as many as eight of the new dual-core chips. The systems will go on sale June 8 for a starting cost of $60,000, an IBM representative said.

The company plans to introduce the Power6 chip throughout two server lines--the System p machines that run Unix and the System i machines that run the i5/OS operating system. Both systems also can run Linux.

A shipping schedule and pricing for the System i with the Power6 chip are not yet available.

IBM also said it will release a feature called Power6 Live Partition Mobility later this year that will let customers move a running instance of Unix from one physical machine to another. The feature, which aids flexibility and protection against hardware failure, is currently in beta testing.

CNET's Stephen Shankland contributed to this report.