Intel's Itanium, Once Destined to Replace x86 Processors in PCs, Hits End of Line

Megalith

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Intel has started shipping its latest Itanium 9700 chip, code-named Kittson, but it’ll be the last of its kind. This line has been around for nearly 16 years but has led a pretty troubled history, so here we are with its demise. The final Itanium is merely an incremental upgrade that will be mainly used by HP in some of its servers. Now, the focus is all on Xeon.

Support for Itanium has dwindled over the past decade, which has led to its gradual death. Server makers stopped offering hardware, software development stalled, and Intel has been openly asking customers to switch to x86-based Xeon chips. The Itanium 9700 is an incremental upgrade to the previous chips, code-named Poulson, and is targeted at high-end servers running Unix. The only major customer for Itanium remains Hewlett Packard Enterprise, which is upgrading its Integrity i6 high-uptime servers with the new chips. The servers provide rock-solid stability and run on Unix-based HP-UX.
 

Darunion

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close to topic, but I really miss my dual pentium 3 xeon system. I used to do video encoding on it, it was so fast (by standards at that point) to convert captured video into divx or realmedia, cant remember the format back then lol. Was such a joy of a system to use. Think they were 1ghz or maybe 900mhz each.
 

whateverer

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In the 12 years it took HP and Intel to release Itanium, Intel destroyed then very foundation of this effort by releasing the Pentium Pro, and then turning it into the Xeon. They managed to build-up x86 as a phenomenal server platform by 2001, all despite the lack of 64-bit or high-up-time features.

Intel still tried to pretend Itanium was better than Xeon, and that distraction left the door wide open for AMD64.
 
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Deleted member 83233

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Wow, I really didn't realize that they were still making or selling these in any form. I was at MS when X64 started to take off, and it was pretty clear where things were headed. That is in (I want to say) 2003 or so. We were still testing IA64 builds, but less and less. I just figured they'd let those quietly die off. :D I actually had to double take this news blurb thinking it was one of those "10 years ago today" things.
 

travisty

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Should say "HPE" instead of "HP" in the text. As a former employee we were all drilled on the proper ways to reference the company. HP Enterprise is a no as well.
Either
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
or
HPE

;)
 

andrewaggb

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I thought that the last 'new' itanium chip was released like 5 years ago. I didn't realize it was still getting any (even minimal) development.
 

whateverer

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Wow, I really didn't realize that they were still making or selling these in any form. I was at MS when X64 started to take off, and it was pretty clear where things were headed. That is in (I want to say) 2003 or so. We were still testing IA64 builds, but less and less. I just figured they'd let those quietly die off. :D I actually had to double take this news blurb thinking it was one of those "10 years ago today" things.


They DID let those quietly die off.

http://www.computerworld.com/articl...are/microsoft-ending-support-for-itanium.html

If you buy one of these dead things, the only OS you'll be running is HPUX.
 

InorganicMatter

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I had no idea Intel was still making Itanium chips. Now that's a name I haven't heard for a long time...

Lotta hate in here. Kids are too young to remember that there was a day when desktops and mainframes ran on completely different processor architectures.
 

drescherjm

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If they'd just reduced the price, they might have gotten some momentum. It was a pretty good chip, even if it did require all new software. They just charged WAY too much for it to gain any adoption.

I agree. I believe their market segmentation was one of the major reasons for its failure.
 
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I had no idea Intel was still making Itanium chips. Now that's a name I haven't heard for a long time...

Lotta hate in here. Kids are too young to remember that there was a day when desktops and mainframes ran on completely different processor architectures.

No, I remember. :D I miss some of it, but really, while things aren't as exciting and varied these days, they are a LOT better (at least in terms of friendliness.) DEC, Cray, SGI, Sun... WANG!!! I used to have a T-Shirt with the WANG logo on it. I loved that shirt!

Those were interesting times for sure. I bet my phone is more powerful than an Iris though. :D

Edit: I just realized (then looked it up) I had forgotten that the IRIS ran on an R3000. :D Wow... has it been that long?!?!? My "drafting"/tech teacher in high school used to take us to the University of Washington computer fair, so we could see all that stuff. I remember walking up to all the booths as though I was a serious customer. :D hehehe SGI, Sun, and DEC were always the fun ones. Actually got invited with some friends to go see the SGI Onyx at their building in Bellevue shortly after it was released.
 
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whateverer

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If they'd just reduced the price, they might have gotten some momentum. It was a pretty good chip, even if it did require all new software. They just charged WAY too much for it to gain any adoption.

There was no avoiding that insane price. The theory behind EPIC is they have a TON of in-order processing throughput available but they waste as much processing power, because it's all "managed" by the compiler.

So if you want to get anywhere near peak performance at all, you need a massive cache. The original shipped with 4MB L2 cache, at a time when 256KB L2 was high-end. By 2004, they were topping 9MB/core.

It would never reach anywhere near full performance with the 2MB/core on the last models of the P4.
 

DuronBurgerMan

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Wow. Didn't even know Itanium was still a thing.

itanium.jpg
 

BulletDust

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close to topic, but I really miss my dual pentium 3 xeon system. I used to do video encoding on it, it was so fast (by standards at that point) to convert captured video into divx or realmedia, cant remember the format back then lol. Was such a joy of a system to use. Think they were 1ghz or maybe 900mhz each.

I feel your pain, I miss my dual Slot 1 P3's...
 

grtitan

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Considering how its hype pretty much killed the Alpha and other amazing RISC cpus of the era, im glad that is going out like this.
 

Balkroth

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Considering how its hype pretty much killed the Alpha and other amazing RISC cpus of the era, im glad that is going out like this.

Was going to say the same thing about Alpha and it's amazing designers and , well, all DEC labs...
 

Jamison Collins

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Even though Itanium was garbage still a little sad to see it go. It had some really awesome features for debugging which allowed you to experiment with some cool ideas on finished silicon and actually demonstrate wall-clock speedup (http://maggini.eng.umd.edu/pub/wang-vmt-asplos04.pdf). But even back when I was an intern at Intel and this was brand new I was already pretty confused as to how Intel thought you could ever make a compiler smart enough to compete with out-of-order.

Oh well. Win some lose some.
 
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The Pentium Pro = the best pure 32-bit CPU ever made, those damned things were so awesome, loved 'em to death I really did. Never messed with an Itanium system in all my decades of working with computers, and while I knew Intel was still making them it was pretty obvious at some point (which took a long fucking time it seems) they'd just have to stop producing them.

"The Itanium is dead, long live the Itanium..."
 

Zepher

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No, I remember. :D I miss some of it, but really, while things aren't as exciting and varied these days, they are a LOT better (at least in terms of friendliness.) DEC, Cray, SGI, Sun... WANG!!! I used to have a T-Shirt with the WANG logo on it. I loved that shirt!

Those were interesting times for sure. I bet my phone is more powerful than an Iris though. :D

Edit: I just realized (then looked it up) I had forgotten that the IRIS ran on an R3000. :D Wow... has it been that long?!?!? My "drafting"/tech teacher in high school used to take us to the University of Washington computer fair, so we could see all that stuff. I remember walking up to all the booths as though I was a serious customer. :D hehehe SGI, Sun, and DEC were always the fun ones. Actually got invited with some friends to go see the SGI Onyx at their building in Bellevue shortly after it was released.

I still have the little blue one, was wanting to make it into a PC one day, I've had it for 17 years or so now and haven't done anything with it.
sgi.jpg
 
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Deleted member 93354

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If they'd just reduced the price, they might have gotten some momentum. It was a pretty good chip, even if it did require all new software. They just charged WAY too much for it to gain any adoption.

It was @#$@# hard to optimize for the very wide instruction set.
 

metadata

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I miss Dec Alpha's, a pity the Tarantula processor never saw the light of day, The itanic I am happy to see has finally past on.
 

Zepher

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I miss Dec Alpha's, a pity the Tarantula processor never saw the light of day, The itanic I am happy to see has finally past on.

When I was doing Lightwave 3D 20+ years ago, I always wanted a DEC Alpha Raptor for a render machine.
I still have my Lightwave 3D V4 parallel port dongle sitting in a drawer.

Here is a simple closing credits animation I made for my LeAnn Rimes compilation video I was selling back in 1997.

 
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metadata

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When I was doing Lightwave 3D 20+ years ago, I always wanted a DEC Alpha Raptor for a render machine.
I still have my Lightwave 3D V4 parallel port dongle sitting in a drawer.

Here is a simple closing credits animation I made for my LeAnn Rimes compilation video I was selling back in 1997.



The magic drawer as I call it, with all sorts of magical things in it from the last 20+ years. There is lots of serial interfaces for various Dec equipment in mine, I am sure there is a Evans and Sunderland graphics card in there too.
 
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Nice! I had a late 500, and a 2000. I actually play the games from time to time under WinUAE+AmiKit. (it's pretty cool to have the WHDLoad HDD installs of all the games one used to have to swap floppies for :D ) I most recently went through Shadow of the Beast II and Turrican 2.
 
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