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The new big Apple

Apple Computer gives its servers a needed boost in processing power while also showcasing the first dual-processor symmetric multiprocessing 200-MHz 604e systems this week.

Apple Computer (AAPL) will give its servers a needed boost in processing power while also showcasing the first dual-processor, symmetric multiprocessing 200-MHz 604e systems this week.

The 700/200 departmental Network Server will be upgraded to the 200-MHz PowerPC 604e processor. The fastest processor previously offered was the 150-MHz version of the 604.

In addition to increased speed, the 200-MHz 604e has a larger internal cache than the 604. Larger caches generally deliver better performance.

Other new features for the revised Network Server include a 3.5-inch Fast/Wide SCSI-2 disk drive, an 8mm tape drive that can store 40GB of compressed data, and an 8X CD-ROM drive.

Apple says that existing Network Server 500/132 and 700/150 customers will be able to upgrade to the 200-MHz 604e when an upgrade card becomes available in November for $1,609.

The 8550/200 Workgroup Server will also use the 200-MHz 604e, a significant jump in performance from the 132-MHz 604 currently offered. Apple will also begin shipping the 8550/200 and 7250/120 with 8X CD-ROM drives; the 7250/120 will ship with a larger disk drive.

Apple also announced that it will be demonstrating a dual 200-MHz PowerPC 604e server this week at the Seybold Publishing trade show. This will be the first Apple server to feature symmetric multiprocessing, and the company expects it to be available in 1997. The extra processor--using SMP-aware applications--should provide performance increases of up to 1.8 times for processor-intensive server applications and environments, the company said.

Symmetric multiprocessing upgrades are expected to be available for existing Network Server customers.

The Network Server 700/200 with 48MB DRAM, two 4GB SCSI-2 drives, and 8X CD-ROM drive will retail for $16,129. The Workgroup Server 8550/200 will retail for between $5,799 and $7,399, depending on hardware and software configuration.