Sun touts Ultra as 'fastest' x64 workstation in industry

Source: Sun Microsystems

Sun Microsystems, Inc. (NASDAQ:SUNW) today announced its new world-record setting Sun Ultra Workstations, including the fastest x64 (x86, 64-bit) workstation in the industry.

The new Sun Ultra Workstations provide customers with more options for operating systems than any other vendor, including the Solaris 10 Operating System (OS) and standard distributions of Linux and Windows.

The new industry-standard workstations include the high-performance, AMD Opteron processor-based single- and dual-core capable Sun Ultra 40 Workstation and the enterprise-class UltraSPARC processor-based Sun Ultra 45 Workstation, in addition to the Dual-Core AMD Opteron processor-based Sun Ultra 20 Workstation. The Sun Ultra 40 and Sun Ultra 45 Workstations ship with a license for Sun N1 Grid Engine 6 software, making them the industry's first workstations to bundle grid software at no additional cost, and all three workstations include fully licensed versions of Sun's developer tools.

Siemens Power Generation, an early access customer, has been testing both single- and dual-core Sun Ultra 40 Workstations to run structural and computational fluid dynamics simulations.

"We are extremely impressed with the functionality and stability of the Sun Ultra 40 Workstation," said Wayne Johnson, senior system engineer of Siemens Power Generation. "Running both the Solaris 10 OS and Linux on the Sun Ultra 40 Workstation has vastly improved our performance and analysis times, which enables us to do more in less time and has resulted in more robust designs with shorter design cycles. I can see how the features and benefits of the new Sun workstations will be invaluable to any company involved with MCAD or visualization."

Sun Sets Precedent with New Features and Industry Firsts

With today's announcement, Sun leverages more than 20 years of expertise and leadership in the workstation market, delivering one of the industry's most compelling and complete workstation portfolios. Sun's new workstations provide flexibility in platform and OS choice, combining the stability and binary compatibility of SPARC technology with the performance and flexibility of x64. Customers today require faster processors, larger memory and powerful graphics capabilities for workstations, while also demanding low-cost solutions that meet their rigorous computing needs. The new Sun Ultra Workstations deliver advanced features that allow enterprise customers and developers to make the most of their IT resources, such as a license for Sun N1 Grid Engine 6 software, the Solaris 10 OS and pre-loaded developer tools including Sun Studio, Sun Java Studio Creator, Sun Java Studio Enterprise and the NetBeans Integrated Development Environment (IDE).

The Sun Ultra 40 Workstation delivers industry-leading visualization capabilities and performance with whisper-quiet operation. It combines the fastest single- or Dual-Core AMD Opteron 200 Series processors, large memory capacity and multiple 8GB/sec HyperTransport interconnects, dual-PCI Express x16 graphics interfaces and the latest graphics technology from NVIDIA.

The Dual-Core AMD Opteron processor-based Sun Ultra 20 Workstation delivers superior performance and price/performance for today's compute-intensive environments, especially for companies in the areas of software development, electronic design automation (EDA), mechanical computer-aided design (MCAD) and academic research.

Along with the Sun Ultra 40 Workstation, the UltraSPARC processor-based Sun Ultra 45 Workstation is one of the industry's first workstations that comes grid-ready to maximize compute resources in an enterprise environment. The Sun Ultra 45 Workstation has three times the storage capacity of the Sun Blade 2500 workstation and 2.6 times the graphics performance improvement with the new Sun XVR-2500 graphics accelerator - making the Sun Ultra 45 Workstation a seamless step up for existing SPARC customers.

"With these new Sun Ultra Workstations, Sun is bringing to the market scalable, high-performance solutions with a rich feature set of software and developer tools. We continue to demonstrate that Sun combines the best technology with unparalleled innovation, allowing customers to reap the rewards," said Lisa Sieker, vice president of marketing, Network Systems Group, Sun Microsystems, Inc. "Our AMD Opteron and UltraSPARC processor-based workstations meet the demands of today's enterprises and developers, while far exceeding the competition in terms of price, performance, flexibility and speed to market."

"Customers are looking for increased performance from their workstations, including the ability to handle increasingly complex data sets and sophisticated visualization. What's more, IT departments are faced with developing the correct IT infrastructure at the right cost," said Lloyd Cohen, Director, Worldwide Market Analysis at IDC. "Sun designed these new workstations with these customer needs in mind. With its Ultra Workstation family, Sun offers customers flexibility in platform and operating system choice, providing options for the x64 market as well as the company's SPARC installed base."

New Sun Ultra Workstations Break Ground With 12 World-Record Benchmarks

The new workstations from Sun have demonstrated outstanding capabilities with various system configurations, while running a variety of supported operating systems. The ultimate performance star, the Sun Ultra 40 Workstation demonstrated an unquestionable lead over the competition, in both performance and price/performance categories, over a wide range of industry standard and well-recognized benchmarks. The highlights of the Sun Ultra 40 Workstation's nine new world records include:

World Record on Pro/Engineer OCUS benchmark; on this leading MCAD benchmark, the Sun Ultra 40 Workstation, running 64-bit Windows XP operating system and equipped with two AMD Opteron processor Model 254 CPUs, is up to 7% faster than the competing HP xw9300 workstation and up to 49% faster than the closest competing Intel Xeon-based workstation, the Dell Precision 670

Two World Records on SPEC_CPU2000 benchmark for dual socket x86 workstations; the Sun Ultra 40 Workstation, equipped with two AMD Opteron processor Model 280 CPUs and utilizing the freely available Sun Studio 11 compiler suite on the Solaris 10 OS, excelled on both integer and floating point intensive throughput subcomponents of the benchmark

The economically priced platform, dual-core-ready Sun Ultra 20 Workstation provides blazing x64 performance and sets three new world records, including:

World Record performance on SPEC APC SolidWorks 2005 benchmark; this benchmark was developed to capture the typical activities of a CAD/CAM (computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing) designer, including I/O, CPU and graphics-intensive operations. The result is an eight test suite from which a single composite score is derived. The Sun Ultra 20 Workstation topped the chart in both performance and price/performance categories, outrunning the HP xw9300 workstation by 76%, while costing 2 times less

World Record price/performance result on EnSight benchmark; the Sun Ultra 20 Workstation offers a tangible alternative to budget-conscious MCAE (Mechanical Computer-Aided Engineering) users, without compromising the performance. As demonstrated by the EnSight benchmark, the workstation delivers the best price/performance combination, while performing faster than the nearest competing system, the HP xw9300

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