Sun Microsystems says it is ahead of schedule for delivering a high-end server chip with eight processor cores to speed up performance.
At the Oracle OpenWorld Conference in San Francisco this week, Sun executives said the new Niagara chip could be ready in servers before the planned target deadline of early 2006.
Sun also confirmed that it would sell Niagara with six or possibly even four cores by recycling eight-core processors that had gone wrong in the manufacturing process.
Sun maintains these chips are perfectly suitable for four- and six-core processing, despite the defects.
Niagara is designed to compete in the high-end server market against the likes of IBM's Power chips, Intel's Xeon and Itanium processors, and AMD’s Opteron solution.
Sun earlier this week launched a range of midrange servers equipped with its new UltraSparc IV+ chip.