Compaq introduces workgroup product

Compaq Computer Corp. today announced a workgroup server featuring Pentium Pro power and prices starting at less than $3 000.

Compaq is positioning its ProLiant 800 as the entry-level product in its ProLiant server line. While the company's ProLiant 2500 and 5000 servers target departmental and enterprise computing respectively the ProLiant 800 is designed to support network file and applications server functions within workgroups. It will replace Compaq's ProSignia 300 a Pentium-based server that the company will phase out during the next few months.

The ProLiant 800 available immediately in the commercial market will be added to the General Services Administration schedule. The product also is likely to be inserted into contracts such as the Navy's PC LAN+ held by Electronic Data Systems Corp. the State Department's indefinite-delivery indefinite-quantity pact held by Wang Federal Inc. and the Environmental Protection Agency's local-area network server contract held by BTG Inc. said Gary T. Newgaard Compaq's director of federal sales and marketing.

The ProLiant 800 which can run Microsoft Corp.'s Windows NT and Novell Inc.'s NetWare comes with either a 180 MHz or 200 MHz Pentium Pro processor but can be upgraded to a dual-processor configuration. Memory can be expanded up to 512M of RAM. The product also features four available Peripheral Component Interconnect slots and an integrated network interface card that can be upgraded to 100 megabit/sec. The product ships with server setup and management software including Compaq's SmartStart 3.20 and Insight Manager 3.20.

The ProLiant 800 provides performance to handle small database and intranet server applications enough `'head room" for expansion and server management tools - all "at an affordable price " according to John Young director of product marketing and business operations for Compaq's Server Products Division.An entry-level ProLiant 800 configuration without a hard drive has a street price of $2 778. A model with a 2.1G drive is priced at $3 444.

Jerry Sheridan a principal analyst at Dataquest Inc. San Jose Calif. said the ProLiant 800's pricing is designed to attract organizations moving from PC LAN servers to more powerful servers. He added that Compaq's effort to hit lower price points is a response to similar moves by Dell Computer Corp. and Hewlett-Packard Co.

ProSignia 200 Launch

Compaq took a similar tack with the launch last week of its ProSignia 200 server.

The ProSignia 200 features a 166 MHz Pentium processor with 512K cache and up to 256M of RAM.Federal pricing for the product starts at $1 636 for a configuration without a hard drive and runs to $2 073 for a server with a 2.5G drive. Compaq plans to add the product to the GSA schedule.

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