In this issue, I’ll cover the following:
1. Amdahl Processors
2. IBM Processors
3. HDS Processors
1. Amdahl Processors
On June 8th, Amdahl announced a new series of Millennium CMOS processors, the GS2000 series, consisting of 114 new models. There are three model groups. The GS2000A series, with uni-processors ranging from 88 MIPS to 112 MIPS is currently available. The GS2000C series, with uni-processors from 75 MIPS to 150 MIPS will be available 4Q99. And the GS2000E series, with uni-processors from 93 MIPS to 185 MIPS, and a total capacity of 2000 MIPS on a 16-way model, will be available 1Q00. For information, including estimated capacity estimates, see their Web page at http://www.amdahl.com/doc/products/compatible/Millennium/Millennium.html. You can find the proc groups and MSUs there as well, so I’m not going to list them in this Cheryl’s List.
The announcement may seem confusing to some people because the GS2000A series actually provides less capacity than Amdahl’s previously announced and distributed GS800 series. What actually happened was that some Amdahl customers were not seeing their expected capacity in the GS800 series. Amdahl confirmed that in some of the cases (generally noticed when the machines were at full capacity), the performance was overstated by 10-15%. There was apparently a problem in their modeling estimates for the new processors. For the 50 to 60 sites who have received these machines since last fall (most during the last three months), Amdahl is attempting to satisfy the customers with one of several options. Some customers are satisfied that they’ve received the capacity they expected. In some cases, Amdahl has reduced the charge and replaced the GS800 with an equivalent GS2000A model, which is rated at a lower MSU and proc group capacity. In other cases where the customers required the additional capacity, Amdahl has traded the GS800 out for a GS2000A with additional processors.
The primary question I’ve been getting from customers is ‘what about the software costs?’ For example the GS8Z8 is listed at 1075 MIPS with an MSU rating of 187. I think the actual capacity of the GS8Z8 is closer to the capacity for the GS2128A, which is rated at 914 MIPS and 158 MSUs. Unless you have a site or ESL license for software, you would have paid for 29 MSUs worth of software for capacity that you didn’t receive. Will your vendor give you a rebate? Probably not. Amdahl indicates that all GS800 customers have been contacted to resolve their issues. None of this change in capacity will be reflected on the Amdahl Web site which stills lists the GS800 as performing at the initial (higher) capacity.
TUNING Letter subscribers who want MIPS, processor groups, and MSUs for both the GS800 series and the GS2000 series may obtain them by sending an email with your fax number, company name and location to firstname.lastname@example.org. This information is not available via email.
2. IBM Processors
In our Cheryl’s List #23, we included the preliminary MSUs for IBM’s new G6 processors. Most of the MSUs have now changed because IBM just completed their latest LSPR ratings. These LSPR ratings can be found at http://www.s390.ibm.com/lspr, and the benchmarks have changed since the last release of the ratings. This is the first time in many years where IBM has actually changed the benchmark jobs used for the LSPR tests. A full description of the changes will soon be found on their LSPR Web site, but they include a combined CICS/DB2 workload, more complex IMS and CICS transactions, and a shorter think time for TSO. The software levels have also been updated to include OS/390 R4 (instead of R1), DB2 V5, IMS V6, and CICS V4. In general, the final LSPR ratings compared to their preliminary ratings show an increase in MIPS for the 1 and 2-way models and the 8- to 12-ways and a decrease in the 4- to 6-ways. The high-end 12-way turbo model now comes in at 1644 MIPS instead of 1614. A welcome change is that the spread of workload variations is lower on the new G6 models than on previous models. That is, CICS/DB2 is closer to the average on the G6 models than on previous models. IBM will be updating the LSPR ratings for HDS and Amdahl machines later this year.
What does this mean to you? If you are with the majority of customers and running OS/390 R4 with fairly current versions of software, you should be using the latest LSPRs for analysis. Our updated CPU Chart contains the MIPS based on these new ratings and is available to subscribers of Cheryl Watson’s TUNING Letter by sending your fax number, company name and address to email@example.com. If you are still at OS/390 R1 or R2 using older subsystems, then the original LSPRs will more closely match your work. I would NOT recommend trying to compare IBM’s latest ratings on their machines with their previously published ratings for other vendors because the workloads are very different.
Here’s a list of the updated MSUs:
3. HDS Processors
In the last Cheryl’s List (#24), I made a reference to the shipping dates for HDS Trinium processors. Some people found it a little confusing, so the following should help:
4-way to 12-way Triniums – available 3Q99 (September) based on 280 MIPS uni.
13-way to 16-way Triniums – available 1Q2000
Although HDS hasn’t announced it yet, I would expect that they will soon announce that their Pilot x9S and x9T models will provide equivalent performance to the IBM G6 models and will change their MSU ratings as well.
That’s all for now. Stay tuned!