Data General designs rackmounted, single-app server

The rackmounted design of the AV 3704R server from Data General Corp. matches what the
company sees as a growing user preference for multiple servers running a single Microsoft
Windows NT application apiece.


The trend away from multiple NT applications on a single box coincides with user
desires “to avoid a single point of failure,” said Lisa Robinson Schoeller,
manager of product marketing for Data General of Westborough, Mass.


Each Aviion AV 3704R can have up to four Intel 450-MHz Pentium III Xeon processors. The
73-inch cabinet stacks up to nine servers. Data General offers configurations with 512K to
2M of Level 2 cache and up to 4G of RAM.


The AV 3704R has six PCI slots and one shared PCI/ISA slot. The cabinet comes with six
internal hot-swap drive bays, two 5.25-inch removable-media drive bays, and CD-ROM and
floppy drives. Tape bays can accommodate various media including digital linear tape,
Schoeller said.


Data General’s Clariion SCSI or Fibre Channel disk arrays and NTerprise Manager
server management software are compatible with the rackmount servers. Data General offers
a 99.9 percent uptime guarantee for NT applications on its servers, Schoeller said.


The rackmounted unit is the most compact platform for Data General’s
preconfigured, pretested NT Server configurations: NT Cluster-in-a-Box, the same as
Microsoft Cluster Server; and TermServer in-a-Box, which is Windows Terminal Server
Edition.


“As far as we know, we’re the only vendor that can build it completely
preconfigured and tested in the factory and ship it intact to the customer” rather
than in multiple pieces, Schoeller said.


Data General supports Intelligent Input/Output peripherals in the AV 3704R, but the box
components do not follow the Intel Corp. I2O standard for offloading CPU processing,
Schoeller said.


One reason for the lack of I2O peripherals may be Intel itself, Schoeller said. The
chip maker is building bigger and bigger CPUs so quickly that the CPU is no longer a
system bottleneck.


“There’s probably over time less and less need for I2O,” even though it
could bring further CPU bandwidth improvements, Schoeller said.


“That would probably drive people down to smaller systems, because they could
improve I/O capacity by offloading,” he said.


The AV 3704R starts at $7,500 for a single-processor server with 128M of RAM, 512K L2
cache, 2M video controller, three-channel SCSI storage controller and PCI Ethernet card.


Contact Data General at 508-898-5000.


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