Some more info about the upcoming Power6 processors from IBM were released this week:
SAN FRANCISCO--When it comes to hulking server designs, IBM's forthcoming Power6 chip one-ups its predecessor's multiprocessor abilities by a factor of two.
IBM's current Power5+ chip works in servers with as many as 32 of the dual-core processors. Power6, though, jumps ahead with 64-chip support, said Power6 architect Brad McCredie and Josh Friedrich, who led work on Power6's memory subsystem.
"You're not going to see that out of the gate," but IBM does plan to sell servers with the greater multiprocessor ability, Friedrich said in an interview. Friedrich spoke Monday at the International Solid State Circuits Conference here and presented a paper on the Power6.
IBM is a major proponent of "big iron," refrigerator-size systems with numerous processors to handle many tasks simultaneously. Few customers have tasks that can occupy the full attention of these top-end machines, but the servers also can be divided into independent partitions useful for consolidating work.