"SGI, a computer maker shaken by multiple transitions, is
pinning its recovery hopes on a new computer design code-named
The SN-1, or 'scalable node' system, is the first machine from
SGI that will be able to use Intel's upcoming 64-bit Merced chip,
due in the latter part of 2000. But following the same two-pronged
strategy as Hewlett-Packard, the first versions of the SN-1 will be
powered by SGI's current MIPS chips, said Beau Vrolyk, senior vice
president of all SGI's products.1"
"The SN series eventually will supplant SGI's Origin server
line, which was responsible for one of the few bright spots in
SGI's recent history. The company said strong sales of the Origin
servers helped bring SGI to a profitable quarter after seven in the
"The Origin servers are now at their sweet sales spot Vrolyk
said, with both business and scientific customers. They now come
with as many as 256 processors and SGI is testing out a
"SGI is working hard to bring these multiple-chip features
to Linux... in time for the Merced rollout.
SGI uses its own method, called cache-coherent non-uniform
memory architecture, or ccNUMA, to gang together dozens of
processors. IBM essentially endorsed the viability of the method
when it acquired Sequent, but Vrolyk said Sequent's design isn't
able to transfer information to and from memory as fast as SGI's
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