INFORMATION INDEPTH NEWSLETTER
SPARC Edition
Oracle Corp
June 2011 Stay Connected: MixTwitterFacebookYoutube
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Be the First to Test Next-Gen SPARC Systems

A select number of enterprises will have an opportunity to become beta testers of the next-generation SPARC T4 servers, slated to ship this year. The beta program gives participants a first look at the new system's design innovations and allows them to gauge how well it would run in their business environment.

"Some customers use the Oracle beta program as a competitive weapon to get a head start on deploying new technologies to solve their business challenges" says Masood Heydari, Oracle vice president of hardware development.

Development of the SPARC T4 server is well underway and represents the next major milestone in the five-year roadmap Oracle has laid out for releasing new innovations for the SPARC platform. Oracle's T4 server is a breakthrough product, providing single thread capability to enable optimized performance for a wider range of enterprise applications.

The new systems use "critical thread API", or the ability of the Solaris operating system to recognize critical threads in applications and assign them, by themselves, to a single processor core. This allows the critical threads to run at the very highest performance levels without competing with other less critical threads. This delivers faster overall performance by accelerating the more critical components in threaded applications.

Beta Testing Benefits
The beta program will benefit eventual users of the SPARC T4 because the early feedback offers insights into how well systems run in simulated production environments. The tests also indicate how well the systems meet the design goals by how efficiently they satisfy customer business needs. Test results often influence ongoing designs and may lead to new features in the final product, according to Heydari.

In return for their help, beta testers gain insights into emerging technologies and get advice from Oracle engineers that could benefit operational efficiency of already deployed systems or jumpstart the evaluation of production systems. The testers also get advice on installation and implementation that could help them deploy a production system more quickly.

"Beta testing helps you to be sure the product is right for you," says Heydari. "You can evaluate the technology, see how it fits within your datacenter, and gauge what level of performance you might expect."

How to Participate
Program participants are required to sign a nondisclosure agreement and typically evaluate the preproduction units for 30 to 90 days.

The T4 beta program will run until the release of production units. Customers wishing to participate in future beta programs should ask their Oracle account manager to submit a nomination to the appropriate beta program coordinator.

This content is intended to outline our general product direction. It is intended for information purposes only, and may not be incorporated into any contract. It is not a commitment to deliver any material, code, or functionality, and should not be relied upon in making purchasing decisions. The development, release, and timing of any features or functionality described for Oracle’s products remains at the sole discretion of Oracle.

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