Future IBM workstation to get 2.6GHz Xeons

IBM plans to bolster its workstation lineup later this year with a speedy 2.6GHz chip from Intel Corp., according to a product road map obtained by IDG News Service.

IBM currently sells a dual-processor IntelliStation M Pro workstation running on 2.4GHz Xeon chips but plans to upgrade this product by October, the document shows. The new workstation will come with two 2.6GHz Xeon chips from Intel, which have yet to be announced.

The new system also will ship with Microsoft Corp.'s Windows XP operating system and 4G bytes of memory, according to the roadmap. Current models of the IntelliStation M Pro ship with Windows 2000.

An IBM spokesman declined to confirm the authenticity of the road map, which was dated Feb. 1. Some products listed in the document have arrived ahead of schedule.

Workstations are powerful PCs most often used by researchers and companies for computing-intensive design tasks. Most such systems have high-end graphics processing components and powerful chips to churn through calculations or render complex images.

The use of the 2.6GHz Intel chips would place the workstations among the top performers in IBM's line. Intel has yet to announce the new chips but has released 2.4GHz Xeons. Pricing on the upcoming workstation from IBM was not immediately available.

Intel declined to comment on announced products.

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