DEC Alpha

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DEC Alpha

A RISC microprocessor from DEC. In November 1995, the Alpha was purportedly the fastest non-research chip used in commonly available workstations. It is superpipelined and superscalar. In February 1996 it was clocked at 200 MHz and in March 1998 at 666 MHz.
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(1) See WolframAlpha.

(2) A family of RISC-based, 64-bit CPUs and computer systems from HP. Originally developed by Digital, which was acquired by Compaq and then HP, the first model introduced in early 1992 was the 150 MHz 21064-AA, considered equivalent to a Cray-1 on a single chip. Subsequent Alpha models continued to blaze the trails for high-speed microprocessors. Alpha-based servers (AlphaServers) run under Tru64 Unix and OpenVMS. In the mid-1990s, Windows NT was ported to the Alpha platform, but support was later dropped.

Alpha Went to Intel
In 2001, Compaq sold all Alpha intellectual property to Intel and announced it would switch its high-end servers to Intel's Itanium processors by 2004. HP acquired Compaq in 2002 and introduced enhanced AlphaServers. Orders were accepted for the new machines until April 2007, and support and service were promised until 2012.

Alpha Models
Shown here are a number of Alpha servers from low to high end. The Alpha chips are always pushing the envelope in performance and architecture. (Image courtesy of Compaq Computer Corporation.)
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References in periodicals archive ?
He backs up his theory with breezy accounts of such fiascos as the 1956 Picturephone, Interactive TV, Iridium and Globalstar, tablet PCs, DEC's Alpha chip, ISDN, and electronic exchanges.
New cross-compile filters add support for testing against the PPC, PPC64, Sparc, Sparc64, x86_64, and Alpha chip architectures.
Electronics giant Samsung is also joining the fray, announcing that they are readying their 1.6 GHz Alpha chip for a year-end release.
The bold move broadens Compaqs reach by adding Digitals high-end Alpha chip technology and servers machines to link computers into networks to its fast-growing personal computer business.
The review of Digital's Alpha Chip Project was very informative.
To power forthcoming high-end machines, it created the Alpha chip. To make them friendly creatures, it is adopting Microsoft's Windows NT.
Microsoft insiders told ComputerWire that work on the port of Windows 2000 to the Alpha chip has been stopped.
A few months later, the Air Force announced that it was replacing the Motorola 68040 processor in its E8 Joint STARS aircraft with a Raytheon/Digital high-speed processor using the Alpha chip. An Air Force modernization plan, called the Modified Modular Mission Computers (MMMC), calls for the installation of computers with greatly expanded memories into F-16 aircraft.
He found the challenges and barriers faced by Digital's Alpha chip team of particular interest.
Last year Metrowerks acquired Tracepoint Technology Inc, a start- up which came out of Digital Equipment Corp's Palo Alto-based Western Research Labs, where it had been working on binary code instrumentation for the Alpha chip (CI No 3,524).