Getting Faster: SGI, IBM, Pliant SSDs, Akamai

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Here’s a roundup of some of some of this week’s headlines on benchmarks, speed records, and response times:

  • IBM breaks processing speed record. IBM announced Monday that the company set a new technology benchmark for the financial services industry, delivering the fastest recorded throughput performance and lowest network latency on Reuters Market Data System v6.0 (RMDS). Using the IBM BladeCenter HS22 server they processed 1.3 million market data updates per second, while maintaining a latency of less than 1 millisecond. Alex Yost, vice president IBM Systems and Technology Group said “The new generation of System x and BladeCenter solutions redefine how x86 clients can address today’s challenges with servers that have less than half the power consumption, one-third the management cost, and more than twice the performance.”
  • SSD startup offers more than twice the input/output. Startup Solid State Drive (SSD) company Pliant Technologies announced Monday an enterprise flash drive (EFD) family, a new class of high-performance, high reliability storage drives.  The EFD’s deliver 2 -4 times faster input/output operations per second and 10 times higher data reliability than existing SSD’s.  The Pliant Lighting EFDs are the first flash-based storage devices to feature a cache-less design to prevent data loss on power interuptions, and a number of advanced data reliability features to deliver complete end-to-end data protection.  The Lightning EFDs have been specificaly designed for demanding, mission-critical 24×7 applications.   The products are being delivered for OEM evaluation and qualification and will be available in September 2009.

  • SGI claims 3 SPEC benchmark world records. SGI announced that the Altix 4700 platform has claimed three Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation (SPEC) benchmark world records at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre in Garching, Germany. The platform used 4 TB of memory, Novell’s SuSE Linux Enterprise 10 operating environment and a single-system image (SSI) node with 1,024 Itanium cores. The records broken were for Jbb2005, cpu2006 and fp_rate_base2006. The SGI Altix family is based on the NUMAflex shared-memory system architecture and offers a modular blade design for superior performance, density and “plug and solve” flexibility.
  • Akamai findings – 2 second threshold for eCommerce. Akamai released findings from a commissioned study Monday that indicate 47 percent of customers expect an ecommerce page to load in two seconds or less.  The study was conducted by Forrester Consulting and examined eCommerce performance and its correlation with an online shopper’s behavior. The 2009 study is a follow up to a similar study conducted in 2006 on the online shopping experience.  Other key findings reveal that online shopper loyalty is contingent upon quick page loading, that retail and travel sites that underperform lead to lost sales, and that mobile is an emerging shopping channel and performance is key to consumer adoption.  Akamai will deliver a webcast discussing trends and findings along with an analyst from Forrester Consulting on September 25, 2009.

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