HP, NEC to develop next-generation x86 servers

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Hewlett Packard and Japan’s NEC will expand their existing partnership to develop high-end x86-based servers for cloud and Web applications.

The companies said Thursday they will team up to accelerate research on HP’s next generation of blade-based server systems, which the U.S. company is gradually introducing alongside its traditional Itanium Unix-based servers. They said their focus will be on creating x86 hardware that can run with the same reliability as the Unix products, which can then be employed in mission-critical roles running today’s social networks, mobile applications and cloud-based services.

HP is trying to catch up to rivals such as Amazon Web Services in the growing market for cloud services, while also stay competitive in hardware amid a general shift away from Unix. The company announced a strategy to pursue a hybrid cloud approach last year, based on a solution it is calling HP Converged Cloud. Last month it announced a new operating system for cloud computing, HP Cloud OS, built on the open-source hosting software platform OpenStack, but said initially the new OS will only run on its own hardware.

The new partnership will aim to speed up the development of HP’s Project Odyssey, which it first announced in 2011. The project is an attempt to integrate x86 server blades running Windows or Linux with its Itanium-based server lineup based on Unix. NEC said the companies will specifically focus on a system that HP has been developing for years called “DragonHawk,” which is supposed to be able to incorporate both types of servers into a single cabinet but has been slow to materialize.

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at PCWorld

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