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Kx doubles its speed on Intel’s new “Nehalem” Xeon 5500 processor

Kx Systems, the leader in high-performance database and timeseries analysis, has worked closely with Intel® to run a series of performance tests on Intel’s new Xeon® 5500 (“Nehalem”) chipset and has confirmed major improvements in speed.

Kx and Intel have a long-standing relationship, with each firm benefiting from the other’s expertise in multi-core processing. The Xeon® 5500 processor is an excellent illustration of Intel’s advanced multi-core technology enabling Kx’s true multi-core kdb+ database to run significantly faster. Kx’s extremely fast in-memory and on-disk database has been tested to run more than twice as fast on the Xeon® 5500 in specific tests compared to the previous generation of processors. The benchmarking used a comprehensive suite of sophisticated market models on databases containing hundreds of millions of records and included floating point and integer calculations.

Kx is the vendor of choice for many of the largest financial institutions where ultra-high speed gives a real-world competitive edge. From its inception the company has developed software designed to make the best use of next generation technology and continues to be the leader in making the most efficient use of the growing number of cores on the chips that Intel has been developing. The release of the Xeon® 5500 is a major step forward for Kx, its clients and the real-world speed of their applications: it’s not just a little faster, but now multiple times faster than the previous generation. Bringing more cores to commodity hardware allows Kx to deliver considerable improvements in processing speeds.
Garry Thall, Director Financial Services, Intel Americas stated: “Intel sees the value in the expertise of specialist software houses. These companies provide the relevance and practical application for our technology. The results of Kx’s technology strategy and Intel’s multi-core platforms is an excellent example of the performance benefits we can deliver our customers.”

Kx chief strategist, Simon Garland, says: "It is vital to have software explicitly designed for multiple cores. Because kdb+ was designed from the beginning for parallel execution it is extraordinarily fast when benchmarking against other traditional applications, as we are able to make full use of all the cores available. Other legacy applications can never be really fast unless they go back and rewrite a significant part of their code to take advantage of newer multi-core architectures. It's not enough to naively convert or port existing code and expect to see major performance gains."
With ultra-high speed always in mind Kx’s original product was written for distributed processing on multiple machines even as far back as the early 90s. Now with multi-core 64-bit computers Kx’s design matches the requirement for exceptionally efficient processing. Kx expects that financial institutions will continue to look at multiple processors on multiple machines in response to both the inexorable growth in data and ever increasing demands for processing speed.