HP Pushes Wintel Superdome Performance Again.By Timothy Prickett Morgan
What a wonderful world it would be if the hotshot system engineers at the world's major server vendors would come into your shop and tune your applications like they do the setups they use for the TPC-C A benchmark that measures overall transaction processing performance. See TPC. test.
Hewlett-Packard Co has run four different benchmarks on its Windows-based Integrity Itanium servers in the past few months, each time wringing a little more performance and better bang for the buck out of what is essentially the same 64-way machine.
The latest test on the Integrity Superdome running Windows 2003 Datacenter Edition and SQL Server An earlier relational DBMS from Sybase and from Microsoft. Sybase introduced SQL Server in 1988 for various Unix versions. In that same year, with help from IBM, Sybase created an OS/2 version that Microsoft licensed and branded as Microsoft SQL Server. 2000 Enterprise Edition brings it to within spitting distance to the machine when running HP's own HP-UX HP's version of Unix that runs on its 9000 family. It is based on SVID and incorporates features from BSD Unix along with several HP innovations.
(operating system) HP-UX - The version of Unix running on Hewlett-Packard workstations. 11i Unix operating system Noun 1. UNIX operating system - trademark for a powerful operating system
UNIX, UNIX system
operating system, OS - (computer science) software that controls the execution of computer programs and may provide various services and the future Oracle 10G See Oracle database. database.
On the HP-UX/Oracle 10G test, the Superdome machine with 512GB of main memory and 64 Itanium 2 processors cost $4.36m. Main memory was half of that, Itanium processors were a quarter, and the rest was peripherals. The 26.5TB of disk storage attached to this server had a list price of $5.16m, and HP-UX and Oracle 10G cost $1.43m.
Add in application servers and three years of maintenance, and the whole shebang Noun 1. whole shebang - everything available; usually preceded by `the'; "we saw the whole shebang"; "a hotdog with the works"; "we took on the whole caboodle"; "for $10 you get the full treatment" cost $13.27m. After a whopping 51% discount for a large systems configuration, HP was able to show the machine could deliver 824,165 transactions per minute (TPM (1) See TP monitor.
(2) (Transactions Per Minute) The number of transactions processed within one minute. See TPS.
(3) (Trusted Platform M ) on the TPC-C test at a cost of $8.28 per TPM.
Back in April, well before the late June launch of the 1.5GHz "Madison" Itanium 2 processors, HP was jumping the gun on the TPC-C tests when it posted results for a 64-way Integrity that delivered 658,278 TPM at a cost of $9.80 per TPM. This machine was running early versions of the Itanium hardware and the Windows stack, so it is not surprising that HP has been able to improve things.
But on the latest test, HP is showing 786,647 TPM at a cost of $6.49 per TPM. That's an increase of 20% in performance and an improvement in price/performance of 34% in the span of four months on essentially the same machine. This is a dramatic improvement, and it points out how any new architecture takes some time to learn and tune. It also points out that customers buying these big boxes should ask for ridiculous discounts. In the latest TPC-C result, the Wintel Integrity had a 44% discount. Back in April, the discount was only 38.5%.
Yesterday's new TPC-C test result for the Integrity Superdome running Windows is clearly aimed at demonstrating that the 64-way machine can deliver better bang for the buck and equivalent scalability to IBM (International Business Machines Corporation, Armonk, NY, www.ibm.com) The world's largest computer company. IBM's product lines include the S/390 mainframes (zSeries), AS/400 midrange business systems (iSeries), RS/6000 workstations and servers (pSeries), Intel-based servers (xSeries) Corp's recently revamped pSeries 690 AIX (Advanced Interactive eXecutive) IBM's Unix-based operating system which runs on its Intellistation workstations and pSeries, p5, iSeries and i5 server families. servers, which now have 32 of Big Blue's 1.7GHz Power4+ processors.
In late June, that 32-way "Regatta-H" pSeries 690 could handle 763,898 TPM running IBM's AIX variant of Unix and its own DB2 database. The Regatta-H server had 512GB of main memory and cost $3.27 million (with $1.38 million going for main memory alone and $1.5m going for processors). AIX and DB2 for the server cost $632,725. The whole pSeries 690 server cost $10.7m at list price, but IBM tossed in a 41% large systems discount, which dropped the cost of the machine down to $8.31 per TPM.