Unisys drops its mainframe chips in favour of Intel

Unisys is phasing out the CMOS processors used in its ClearPath mainframes, and will enable its MCP and OS 2200 operating systems to run on Intel-driven hardware instead.

Unisys is phasing out the CMOS processors used in its ClearPath mainframes, and will enable its MCP and OS 2200 operating systems to run on Intel-driven hardware instead.

The move to Intel processors will make it easier for Windows and MCP applications to work together in shared environments.

The company first indicated that it would drop traditional mainframe CMOS technology last autumn, after agreeing to collaborate with NEC in developing high-end servers based on Intel’s Xeon processors.

Unisys’ first Xeon-based ClearPath system is expected in late 2007. This system will run both Linux and Windows, as well as the MCP and OS 2200 operating systems.

Despite the move to Intel, Unisys has not ruled out further upgrades to its CMOS chips, to help support existing users struggling to make the transition.

But the driving factor behind the move is to cut Unisys’s development costs, and to take advantage of the expected rapid processing power that Intel's multi-core Xeon chip designs will offer.

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