Sun gives UltraSparc a power boost

Sun launched the latest version of its UltraSparc IV+ processors for Sun Fire servers

Sun has brought new, faster UltraSparc IV+ processors to market, continuing to promote its homegrown chips even as it sells servers with processors from rivals Intel and AMD.

The company has announced the 1.95GHz and 2.1GHz UltraSparc IV+ processors are available in its Sun Fire line of servers. The previous-generation UltraSparc IV + processors operate at 1.8GHz.

In tests, the latest UltraSparc IV+ processors ran twice as fast as the UltraSparc IV and five times faster than the UltraSparc III, according to Sun.

The 1.95GHz processor is designed to run in Sun Fire E2900 and E6900 servers, while the 2.1GHz processor can run in those and five other server models.

UltraSparc processors are part of the reason Sun has enjoyed faster growth in the server market than competitors, Sun said. Sun's global server revenue grew by 24.4 per cent to $US1.47 billion in the fourth quarter of 2006, compared with $US1.18 billion the same period of 2005, according to IDC. Other vendors' revenue grew only by single digits.

Even though its server market share grew in the fourth quarter to 9.7 per cent from 8.2 per cent a year earlier, Sun still trailed number one IBM's 37.9 per cent share and number two HP's 26.8 per cent share.

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