ALR back in NZ market, targets high-end servers

After an absence of five years, PC and server maker Advanced Logic Research (ALR) has re-entered the New Zealand market with the launch of a six Pentium Pro 200MHz server. ALR will be distributed by Auckland-based Imaging New Zealand and will aim its high-end servers at the business sector.

After an absence of five years, PC and server maker Advanced Logic Research (ALR) has re-entered the New Zealand market with the launch of a six Pentium Pro 200MHz server.

ALR will be distributed by Auckland-based Imaging New Zealand and will aim its high-end servers at the business sector.

Vaughan Nankivell, Imaging New Zealand managing director, says ALR products are ideally suited to the imaging solutions Imaging New Zealand provides.

“We gave away $1 million to $1.5 million worth of PC and server business last year and we’d like to have more control over the hardware our systems go on to. But we will target any company wanting a high-end server.

“What market we go after is up to the reseller. They might target the likes of Compaq and Hewlett-Packard and we will have a couple who want to go after the traditional RISC/Unix area. In Australia we have resellers successfully targeting Sun.”

According to IDC, globally ALR has the third biggest market share in the Intel-based super server (two CPUs or more) category with 7%, after Compaq (49%) and Hewlett-Packard (19%).

An entry-level ALR server has two CPUs, while the Revolution 6x6 can take from one to six Pentium Pro chips.

“It runs standard operating systems, although you need the eight-CPU version for Microsoft Windows NT. With Windows NT, six CPUs give a 43% increase in performance over four CPUs,” says Terry Leong, ALR market development manager.

“In an ideal world it would be 50%. For Unix it’s about 31%. We are pricing our machines to target those people who would buy four CPUs.”

Leong says in Australia, where ALR has been represented for two years, dual-processor servers are now entry level and four-way systems are growing in popularity.

The Revolution 6x6 is available in a tower or rack mountable system, has an LCD touch-screen panel system monitoring, a hot swappable power supply and the option of storage expander units which sit next to the tower and expand from 80Gb to 280Gb using 1.6in hard drives. ALR’s server management software InforManager is standard across the line of servers.

The new server has two CPU cards, with three slots each, and can be upgraded one processor at a time. ALR uses a combination of parallel bus architecture and processor clustering (distinct from server clustering) to get over design obstacles raised when putting so many CPUs in one machine.

Looking to the future, Leong says the 6x6 Revolution does comply with Microsoft’s upcoming Wolfpack specifications for running Windows NT over clustered machines, and the server vendor will also have a Pentium II server available in New Zealand by September.

The Revolution 6x6 has a recommended retail price of $31,975 ex GST for 128Mb ECC RAM, and 8xSCSI CD-ROM drive.

Each Pentium Pro 200MHz CPU upgrade is $3750 ex GST.

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