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I have seen the new TCP score from Oracle. Congratulations to them for topping the chart.
One funky thing though - that is the only cluster solution you see in the list. You can't even get Oracle people to recommend using RAC over a big multi-CPU machine so long as someone pays for the hw. Administration and support is a day and night difference. No admin wants to run RAC if they can avoid.
And have you looked at the percentage licenses are of the total cost? No wonder they want to sell you that setup.
You might also guess that there might be updates possible to the IBM setup.
Which is all so-so interesting of course.
What IBM _is_ doing is more interesting. Power7 will come some time next year and will probably come in a 256-way p595. You can take a guess at the performance that will have (Cost? Yes. Lots of it I expect.)
They also have their own cluster solution with DB2 PureScale. I expect you can chain p595s into that cluster till the cows come home. There will be very interesting times ahead indeed, and I'm not at all certain Oracle will be able to scale up if they want to stay in the numbers game.
Personal opinion: 7.7m was by far not enough to make an impact. IBM has publicly talked about their Power7 and I think that will have the "PS2 effect" in the market; that it will stop many that might be seriously interest in the Sun RAC setup to wait-and-see (if they have the time) and compare it to a similar Power7 setup.
(For the record: I both use and like AIX.)
Yeah the Power7 will be fast. But Fujitsu is releasing a octocore SPARC 64 next year called Venus. It has the same performance as Power7: 128Gflops.
And also the Sparc Niagara is extremely fast on certain workloads. For instance, Siebel v8 benchmarks, one Sun T5440 with four 1.4GHz Niagara is twice as fast as three IBM Power570 servers with fourteen Power6+ CPUs at 4.7GHz. One T5440 cost 76.000USD which is quite a lot of money. But one P570 server cost 413.000USD which is many times more. You would need six P570 servers to match one T5440. See benchmarks on Oracle site. There are whitepapers from IBM and from SUN. Compare them.