Thursday, April 13, 2006

Euronext.liffe Shifts Exchange to Linux-Intel Platform

Euronext.liffe is switching its technology to the Linux operating system and the Intel-based processor citing the need to keep up with the growth of algorithmic trading.

The move signals "a fairly substantial shift in the electronic exchange's IT strategy," says Jim Johanek, SVP U.S. Technology Strategy for Euronext.liffe. The futures exchange—which is the derivatives arm of Euronext Group—initiated the process in 2004 right around the time when algorithmic trading in the futures industry began to take off, says Johanek.



"While people would have laughed at you eight years ago if an exchange said it was moving to Linux and Intel, Johanek says, "The calculus has changed." Citing the huge amounts of R&D have gone into the Intel platform, plus the sheer number of systems using the Intel platform have grown, coupled with algorithmic trading as reasons for the IT change.

"Before we counted heads of traders, now we're dealing with traders who operate multiple models at one time," he says. Euronext.liffe's customers were on the Intel architecture. "Our customers were growing in number but the technology they were using was advancing faster than our own," says Johanek.

In addition, the exchange realized it was going to run out of headroom, he says. "Our ability to innovate faster than the demand from our customers" was questionable, he suggests.

"In a nutshell, performance, cost and scalability were the three most important factors, says Johanek. "The technology is 30 times less expensive for the same amount of performance," he says. "We're getting 30 times more bang for our buck in moving over to Linux," adds Johanek.

Johanek says migrating to Linux on Intel-based processors will improve throughput, resulting in a nine-fold increase in the number of contracts it can list on the host, and a seven-fold increase in the number of orders it can process.


Read the full article at: Wall Street & Technology : Euronext.liffe Shifts Exchange to Linux-Intel Platform

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