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Stratus Gets Investments from Compaq, Intel

Compaq and Intel invested $65 million in Stratus Technologies, a high-availability computer systems builder and service provider that plans to release fault-tolerant Windows 2000 systems.

The investment was announced today, along with a $50 million investment from DB Capital Partners, a private equity investment group of Deutsche Bank.

“We think we strengthen our product business with the implied endorsement of these two vendors,” Stratus president and CEO Steve Kiely said of the investments from Compaq and Intel.

The Compaq and Intel investments are combined deals that involve technology licensing arrangements.

Stratus will share its technology for fault-tolerant computing on standard Intel-architecture components that Compaq can include in its systems. Compaq will also share server systems technology with Stratus.

The Intel arrangement will help Stratus port its technology to IA-64 and Infiniband systems.

Stratus is not looking to incorporate the technologies under the agreement into the line of servers it is working on now, the ft 5200 and the ft 6500, Kiely said.

The two-processor 5200 was originally expected to ship in September 2000 and the four-way 6500 was supposed to ship about a month later.

The Stratus approach involves doubling up processor-memory modules so that if either a processor or memory unit fail, a second module is also handling the same transaction or process and no interruption occurs. This Dual Modular Redundancy means that the 2-processor ft 5200 actually carries four processors, and a 4-processor ft 6500 carries eight processors.

For a premium, Stratus also plans to offer Triple Modular Redundancy, which means three processors for every functional chip in a server.

Stratus announced a similar licensing deal with NEC in June, and is pursuing licensing arrangements with other computer makers, Kiely said. – Scott Bekker

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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