Why the platform focus?

Article: Tukwila Update
By: Doug Siebert (foo.delete@this.bar.bar), February 25, 2009 5:13 pm
Room: Moderated Discussions
anon (anon@anon.com) on 2/24/09 wrote:
>Downhill as in shrinking market share? Maybe. I don't know I'm not trying to predict
>the future. But unlike naysayers have been forecasting for years, IPF right now
>has been growing, now has a very significant market share, and appears to have a
>pretty good medium-term commitment from Intel.
>And I don't think it is at all guaranteed that market share will be relegated to
>PA-RISC replacement. What about SPARC? How long will POWER compete in the high end?
>Sure many of them will want to try migrating to x86, but as long as Intel segregates
>IPF into the high end, some will look there.

Well "someone" would certainly consider me a nay-sayer, but I never suggested anything other than that IPF would take over pretty much the entire PA-RISC market share, most of the OpenVMS/Alpha market share and maybe half the Unix/Alpha market share (since they were changing both architecture and OS, the OSF/1 guys had no real incentive to choose HP-UX on IPF any more than Sparc, POWER, or Linux)

That's all its done, its "growth" as you define it, has been replacement. That's like claiming x86-64 has grown by 10000% in the last 4 years, when everyone knew that would happen as 32 bit x86 CPUs were replaced by them. Many who bought 64 bit CPUs would have been fine with 32 bit CPUs, but if they wanted the latest fastest CPUs to run x86 code, they ended up with 64 bit CPUs. Its no different for the large bulk of IPF sales. People who wanted to run their HP-UX or OpenVMS software with the latest and fastest CPUs they could do so bought IPF.

>I'm not very knowledgeable about the market, but aren't a significant amount of IPF sales windows and linux based?

I've worked with a number of Superdome sites before and so far the only time I've ever seen Windows run on one was in a little partition just to test. There's some Linux, but the huge bulk is HP-UX. Yes, that's anecdotal, but I've never seen any hard numbers on how IPF is sold - I remember seeing some numbers a few years back claiming that 1/3 of Superdome buyers were running Windows but I suspect that was like the site I saw with one partition. I'll bet as a percentage of IPF cores sold Windows doesn't amount to more than 2-3%, but we'll probably never see those numbers unless someone leaks some internal HP or Microsoft information.

Where's the incentive to run Linux on IPF? That disappeared when x86 went 64 bit. Sure, you can buy high RAS hardware for IPF, but anything where x86 doesn't support the feature set is either going to be missing or not well tested in Linux, so the increased RAS you get from hardware would be lost via software. The situation is the same with Windows, where's the incentive, when you can buy an off the shelf server with 24 cores and 128GB of RAM. Running Windows on even larger systems, using RAS that is either missing or not well tested in Windows, and using a version of Windows that's obviously going to be far less well supported than x86 seems silly to me. Again, maybe it made sense in certain cases before x86 went 64 bit, but now its just silly and a complete waste of effort.

>I don't know. But the thing is, the "just wait for the next one" guys are not worse
>than the "there will not be a next one" guys, as far as I can tell.

What about us "the 'just wait for the next one' guys are always wrong" who aren't saying there won't be a next one, just that it will eventually be killed as its target market continues to shrink. At first it was sold a bit in workstations and was a real player in the HPC market. But the workstation market has long abandoned it, and more recently it has become a non-factor in the HPC market as it is just too far behind x86 in performance and the 32 bit limitation of x86 was removed. All that's left is the HP-UX market, which is not small - Sparc and IBM are still in their own similarly sized Unix markets after all - but its nowhere near where Intel wanted/expected it to be. I'm just not sure Intel will consider it worth its while in the long run, and would probably save money and free up engineering effort to increase their x86 lead over AMD by migrating that market to x86 (and it'd still be worth it even if AMD succeeded in taking its usual 20%)
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                    itanium bigger than entire car industryVincent Diepeveen2009/02/08 05:35 AM
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      All x86 SpecInt scores are useless due to autopar (NT)Paradox2009/02/06 08:47 AM
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    Why the platform focus?David Kanter2009/02/06 01:09 AM
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        Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/06 10:37 AM
          Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/06 12:49 PM
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                    Sun and x86 server differentiationRagingDragon2009/02/10 12:03 AM
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            Why the platform focus?bob2009/02/08 04:51 AM
              Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/08 09:23 AM
          missing the big pictureAM2009/02/18 06:43 AM
            missing the big pictureMichael S2009/02/18 08:42 AM
              missing the big pictureAM2009/02/18 09:03 AM
        Why the platform focus?mpx2009/02/06 12:47 PM
          Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.mpx2009/02/06 04:48 PM
            Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.Paul2009/02/07 02:56 PM
              z series?Michael S2009/02/07 03:12 PM
              Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.someone else2009/02/24 04:37 AM
                Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.EduardoS2009/02/24 06:55 AM
                  Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.someone else2009/02/25 01:55 AM
                    Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.Michael S2009/02/25 02:27 AM
          Why the platform focus?RagingDragon2009/02/07 06:18 PM
            Why the platform focus?Paul2009/02/08 01:10 PM
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        Why the platform focus?slacker2009/02/06 02:10 PM
          Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/06 02:40 PM
            Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/06 02:51 PM
            Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/06 02:58 PM
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                    Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/07 12:24 PM
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                        Why the platform focus?max2009/02/08 04:57 AM
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                      Why the platform focus?hobold2009/02/09 05:49 AM
                Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/24 01:57 AM
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                    Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/24 12:30 PM
                      Why the platform focus?slacker2009/02/24 01:51 PM
                        Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/25 12:04 AM
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                            Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/25 09:55 AM
                              has anyone seen Tukwila silicon?anon2009/02/25 10:38 AM
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                                Why the platform focus?slacker2009/02/25 01:11 PM
                                Why the platform focus?a reader2009/02/26 09:11 PM
                                  Why the platform focus?rcf2009/02/27 01:32 PM
                                    Why the platform focus?max2009/02/27 02:11 PM
                                      Why the platform focus?rcf2009/02/27 03:50 PM
                            Why the platform focus?Vincent Diepeveen2009/02/25 04:30 PM
                            $40M sale to $16M companybob2009/02/25 08:25 PM
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                  Why the platform focus?anonymous2009/02/24 11:52 AM
                    Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/24 12:20 PM
                      Why the platform focus?anonymous2009/02/24 03:31 PM
                        Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/25 12:05 AM
                        Why the platform focus?someone else2009/02/25 01:04 AM
                          Why the platform focus?Michael S2009/02/25 01:42 AM
                            Put me down for $500 that Poulson doesn't arrive earlier than Q4/2011 (NT)slacker2009/02/25 12:39 PM
                        Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/25 06:54 AM
                          Why the platform focus?anonymous2009/02/25 09:46 AM
                            Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/25 10:22 AM
                            Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/25 11:01 AM
                              Why the platform focus?anonymous2009/02/25 11:54 AM
                  Why the platform focus?mpx2009/02/24 02:11 PM
                    Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/24 08:57 PM
                      Why the platform focus?Doug Siebert2009/02/24 10:04 PM
                        Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/24 10:46 PM
                          Why the platform focus?Doug Siebert2009/02/25 05:13 PM
                            Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/25 08:53 PM
                              Why the platform focus?bob2009/02/25 09:00 PM
                                Please try to keep up (NT)anon2009/02/25 09:49 PM
                              Why the platform focus?Doug Siebert2009/02/26 12:09 AM
                                Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/26 01:12 AM
                                Why the platform focus?Michael S2009/02/26 02:16 AM
                                  Why the platform focus?James2009/02/26 06:09 AM
                                    sufficiently intimate with the OSMichael S2009/02/26 06:29 AM
                                      sufficiently intimate with the OSanon2009/02/27 01:01 AM
                                      sufficiently intimate with the OSHoward Chu2009/02/27 01:37 AM
                      Why the platform focus?Michael S2009/02/25 02:02 AM
                        Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/25 03:07 AM
              Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/07 01:18 PM
                Why the platform focus?Vincent Diepeveen2009/02/08 10:16 AM
                Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/25 07:40 AM
                  Intels financial statusVincent Diepeveen2009/02/25 12:02 PM
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          Why the platform focus?RagingDragon2009/02/07 06:43 PM
  Tukwila Update - article onlineVincent Diepeveen2009/02/05 09:11 AM
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