Dell will shortly announce workstations based on two of Intel's 2GHz Xeon processors four weeks ahead of the CPU's formal launch, system builder sources have told The Register.
The 2GHz Xeon - based on the Pentium 4 - was delayed last month by Intel for what the company described as extra validation. The server and workstation-oriented chip, designed for two-way systems, had been expected to debut on 26 August alongside the 2GHz desktop Pentium 4.
Instead, it will now ship sometime in Q4, Intel said in a terse statement right at the end of the company's Developer Forum last month.
Clearly that means an October release at the earliest, and if Dell is indeed planning an announcement for the very near future, that suggests the 2GHz Xeon - codenamed Foster - will ship during the first or second week of October.
And give AMD is scheduling the release of a new, faster version of its own workstation and server chip, the Athlon MP, on 9 October, Intel has added incentive to ship its part at the same time to maximise its clock-speed lead if not a real performance advantage. As we reported yesterday, the next Athlon MP is expected to ship at 1.53GHz.
Early October would be good for Intel for other reasons: to get in ahead of the next round of massive P4 price cuts coming on 28 October just ahead of the arrival of 0.13 micron P4s, codenamed Northwood, running at 2GHz and 2.2GHz. The 0.13 micron die-shrink version of the Xeon, codenamed Prestonia, is due Q1 2002. ®