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AMD’s server challenge

Ronald Hanaki
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AMD’s bid to enter the server market will face an uphill battle. Let’s hear from Techweb.

But AMD’s expertise in designing consumer PC microprocessors will only get them so far, analysts said. Potential server OEM customers said they’re less interested in the strident one-upsmanship that characterizes the PC market, and will ask AMD tough questions about the stability, reliability, and cost of the AMD platform.

One question mark looms over the Athlon infrastructure. AMD does manufacture chipsets, and its two-way AMD 760 MP chipset was demonstrated at October’s Microprocessor Forum in San Jose. But the company has also said it would cede the PC chipset market to partners like Via Technologies Inc. and Acer Laboratories Inc., which have built their businesses entirely on chipset products.

“We intend to get into dual-processing [chipsets] and establish the business there,” AMD’s Mitton said. “Then we’ll see about Hammer.”

With Intel leaving a vacuum, opportunity knocks. Aim true and strike when the mantle is hot, AMD. However, Techweb is reporting on a delay for MicronPCs using DDR motherboards.

Micron Electronics Inc. (stock: MUEI) is reporting lead times of 98 days on a version of the Millennia XP that uses the latest AMD-760 chipset from Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (stock: AMD) and its new 266-MHz front-side bus speed, together with a 1.2-GHz Athlon microprocessor.