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As reported before, Intel on Monday released its first server platform built around dual-core Intel Pentium processors. The new product is primarily aimed at cost-effective and blade servers, but can offer performance close to higher-end 2-way Intel Xeon-based machines.

“With highly competitive pricing, this platform is a great value for smaller businesses wishing to buy powerful entry-level servers,” Intel said in a statement.

Intel’s server platform to be based on its dual-core processors Pentium D and Pentium Extreme Edition will include new E7230 chipset, which was previously code-named Mukilteo. The new core-logic will support processors with up to 1066MHz processor system bus, up to 8GB PC2-5300 (DDR2 667MHz), PCI Express x1 and x4 slots, PCI-X slots, Serial ATA with RAID support as well as some other server-specific things.

The new server platform is primarily aimed at blade as well as small form-factor servers and will succeed succeed uni-processor server platforms featuring Intel Pentium 4 processors and E7221 chipsets. Furthermore, the platform is likely to offer a very powerful option for those looking for 2P server machine: a single Intel Pentium dual-core chip at up to 3.20GHz and appropriate mainboard definitely cost less than two Intel Xeon server chips and corresponding platform, furthermore, it consumes less power too. Intel’s dual-core chips consume up to 130W each, Intel’s latest Xeon processors with 2MB of cache have thermal design power of 110W, which means that Intel Pentium Extreme Edition processor 840 has higher performance per watt compared to the modern Intel Xeon chips.

Intel recently submitted SPEC CPU2000 benchmark results of Intel Pentium 4 Extreme Edition processor 840 and D955XCV mainboard to SPEC.org web-site. The dual-core Pentium-based system scored 30.5/30.5 base/peak CFP2000 rates and 33.1/33.3 base/peak CINT2000 rates. By contrast, HP’s ProLiant DL360 G4p server with Intel Xeon 3.60GHz processors scored 30.2/30.9 base/peak in CFP2000 and 39.9/40.5 base/peak in CINT2000. HP’s ProLiant machine was equipped with 4GB of PC2-3200 (CL3) memory, while Intel’s machine was equipped with 1GB of PC2-5400 (CL5) memory. The results emphasize that thanks to higher-speed memory sub-system on Intel’s latest 955X chipset floating point performance of a 3.20GHz dual-core processor with 2MB of cache in total is higher than that of two single-core 3.60GHz chips with 4MB of cache in total. Integer performance, however, is higher on 2-way system due to higher clock-speed.

Today’s introduction follows already- introduced dual-core processors for Intel-based desktops and workstations and is the first in what will be an extensive family of Intel-based dual-core server products shipping later this year and in 2006.

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