Independent research firm Forrester Research, Inc. published a recent research report headed, x86 Servers Hit The High Notes - x86 Servers Are A Viable Landing Place For Selected RISC/Unix Workloads right before Christmas break (December 2010).
This past week I was one of the keynote speakers at a VMware customer event in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada. Besides the fun of heading back to an area I know well from my university days in Waterloo, it was also a chance to investigate and discuss the role of scale up virtualization in an x86 world.
With the advent of 8 socket servers with Xeon processors that have 8 cores per socket, you can now get systems like the HP DL980 G7 that support 64 cores is an Industry Standard Server. In the past, this was often the realm of scale up UNIX, Non-Stop, or mainframe types of servers.