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Faster chip plugged into midrange UltraSparc

Upcoming "Niagara" will appear in the 1.6GHz UltraSparc IIIi.

SAN JOSE, Calif.--Sun has brought a faster chip to its four-processor server, the 1.6GHz UltraSparc IIIi, the company said on Monday. Previously, the V440 systems were available only with 1.3GHz chips. At an event here, Sun Chief Executive Scott McNealy showed off its "Niagara" processor, which combines eight processing cores onto one slice of silicon and is due for release in 2006. Niagara can simultaneously run 32 instruction sequences, or threads, and consumes 56 watts of power.

In addition, Sun said it is working on a sequel called the UltraSparc IIIi+, set for release in 2005, that will include more high-speed cache memory. The company is also embracing Advanced Micro devices' Opteron processor and Fujitsu's Sparc64 family of chips.