Microsoft Kicks Itanium to the Curb

Microsoft Kicks Itanium to the Curb

Goodbye Itanium - it's been nice knowing you, but we've grown apart, and quite frankly, I'm moving on to bigger and better things. Thanks for the memories. - Microsoft.

The Redmond software giant didn't quite put it that way, but did announce plans to stop supporting Intel's Itanium architecture. According to a Microsoft blog posting on Friday, Windows Server 2008 R2 will be the last version of Windows Server to support Itanium. SQL Server 2008 R2 and Visual Studio 2010 will also be the end of the line for Itanium.



"Why the change? The natural evolution of the x86 64-bit (“x64”) architecture has led to the creation of processors and servers which deliver the scalability and reliability needed for today’s 'mission-critical' workloads," Microsoft wrote. "Just this week, both Intel and AMD have released new high core-count processors, and servers with 8 or more x64 processors have now been announced by a full dozen server manufacturers. Such servers contain 64 to 96 processor cores, with more on the horizon."

Current Itanium customers have nothing to worry about, however, as Microsoft reiterated that it will continue to support them for the next 8 years during the lengthy transition process.
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This is the same thing IMO like moving from a 32 bit OS with 2GB of RAM to a 64 bit OS and requiring 4GB of RAM to fully utilize the speed. This is one case where it appears the software has worked the hardware and this is not a bad thing. Its simply moving to a new architecture to take advantage of what the software offers. Now we will see those 8 and 16 core processors come into play.

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I'm not even sure that Intel has been making a lot of Itanium chips as of late. Might be a dying breed.

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This announcement is reminiscent of one that informed us that OCZ was no longer selling the Hypersonic line of PCs. Some of us hadn't heard of Hypersonic and someone quipped, "So long Hypersonic, I fell like I barely knew you". Well, so long Itanium, I feel like...

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Really, This thing was actually produced?

I thought these things were gone a while back. I looked at it back then as just another Flash in the pan!

I always opt for the 64Bit OS's, but I never saw the price/performance/upgradability with these chips. It was always cheaper and good enough to so with the proven performers at a reasonable price.

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