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Tuesday, December 30, 2003, 03:00 pm PT (06:00 pm ET)

Sources: G5 XServes pass QA tests in-road to production

Apple engineers are very satisfied with the latest results of quality assurance tests performed on a pre-production series of XServes, sources said earlier this week. A batch of about two dozen new PowerPC 970 G5-based servers rolled off a production line in one of Quanta's manufacturing facilities about two weeks ago. Each of the units, which consist of both single and dual processor models, reportedly passed Apple's quality assurance tests.

In late November, the company ran similar tests on a larger group of G5 XServes that resulted in unsatisfactory results. During the tests, significant issues were discovered with the system used to diagnose the XServes or the XServes themselves, sources said. As part of the pre-production run, engineers payed considerable attention to temperature readings inside the system's CPU compartments and 5 other locations.

Preliminary reports indicate that it will be Quanta who will manufacture the new line of Apple XServes, which are due to arrive in the coming month. The servers are rumored to accompany a Power Mac G5 revision also scheduled for the same time frame. Initial reports indicated that these high-end offerings could make a splash during the upcoming Macworld Expo, though a successive report has shed some doubt that the company's professional offerings would be clumped amongst consumer oriented announcements.

Sources continue to agree that new Power Mac and XServe product introductions are imminent and will proceed Apple's Macworld announcements in the coming weeks if they are indeed omitted from the event. In either case, sources do not expect either of the products to begin shipping to customers before the month of February.