There you are again racing against time with a project deadline looming. You think you’ve got the bugs worked out, but every time you try to model your entire assembly or a large sub-assembly, your workstation pulls the electronic equivalent of a car running out of gas. It slows to a crawl, sputters unenthusiastically, and then stops—out of memory.
Until recently, Pro/ENGINEER users had only a few less-than-thrilling options to solve this problem.
The old way. Most often, the maximum addressable memory allowed by a 32-bit version of Microsoft Windows XP Professional is just 4 GB (with the operating system itself using 2 GB). This means you could spend hours tuning and tweaking your system, attempting to squeeze out a little more precious memory and hoping it will last as you try to build or analyze your model. Or, you might try breaking the model into smaller, more memory-friendly pieces, but this is not an ideal option either. It’s time consuming and costly and requires you to run parts separately, using a lot of assumed parameters derived from other sub-assemblies. And assumptions, even well educated ones, can be problematic. What’s worse, you may never be sure the assembly would run as designed until the prototype is built.
Things are looking up. Cheer up, better days are here. The recent introduction of a compatible and affordable 64-bit technology has shattered this artificial memory barrier thanks to cooperation between HP, Intel, and PTC.
The combination of a native 64-bit version of Pro/ENGINEER Wildfire, HP workstations with 64-bit Intel® Xeon™ processors and Microsoft Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, delivers major improvements in overall performance and ease of use when compared to the exact same workstations running 32-bit applications and operating systems.
In fact, a recent OCUS benchmark showed a 15 percent improvement in overall speed. And in a recent test of 64-bit Pro/ENGINEER Structural and Thermal, the performance improvement was even more dramatic—between 23 percent and 38 percent. These performance improvements occur because the 64-bit technology can better manage data processing tasks, resulting in faster throughput. The new workstations can handle massive amounts of data compared to the old 32-bit systems, reducing data processing bottlenecks and the time spent swapping data back and forth between memory and disk. And we all know that faster throughput means greater productivity.
The improvement is even more remarkable when dealing with large assemblies and models. Models that would choke your 32-bit workstation run without a hitch thanks to the extraordinary addressability of 64-bit operating systems. The latest 64-bit Intel Xeon processor and Windows-based workstations can theoretically address 18 billion GB or 18 exabytes, and can practically address tens of GB with ease. The limitation is no longer the operating system, but the ability to pack physical memory into the chassis. And even that limitation is receding steadily.
What it means for you. Transitioning to an HP workstation with Intel Xeon processors with 64-bit Windows and a 64-bit application such as Pro/ENGINEER Wildfire can help you get your job done faster, with less aggravation, and fewer opportunities for error.
“We worked closely with key customers to test this new solution. For Pro/ENGINEER users, increased memory means they can work with their assemblies, perform analyses, and design freely, ultimately reducing design cycle times,” says Jim Zafarana, Vice President of Worldwide Marketing for workstations at HP.
Another transition? You may be wondering how you can handle the transition from 32-bit to 64-bit. After all, we’ve all got 32-bit applications that we cannot afford to give up yet, and 64-bit alternatives are far from ubiquitous.
But the news is good: The latest HP workstations allow you to run most of your conventional 32-bit applications alongside your 64-bit solutions without any noticeable loss of performance. And to help make the transition as easy as possible, you can take advantage of the HP 64-bit Transition Toolkit. The Toolkit can help you better understand the 64-bit environment and its advantages, how to plan the transition to 64-bit computing, port and program for 64-bit architectures, and prepare for multi-core processing.
At the core of this breakthrough is a close relationship between technology leaders. HP and Intel have worked together for years to develop 64-bit processing technologies. They have since worked with PTC and Microsoft to ensure the smoothest possible interface of hardware, operating system, and applications, ultimately benefiting Pro/ENGINEER users like you.
Get more information on 64-bit capable workstations from HP
Learn more about the HP 64-bit Transition Toolkit
Learn about HP’s solutions for Pro/ENGINEER users
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