SERVER VENDOR Seamicro has bunged 384 dual core Intel Atom 1.66GHz chips into a 10U server.
Seamicro, a firm that makes low-power servers, announced that its 10U SM10000-64HD now packs 384 dual core Intel Atom chips running at 1.66GHz, beating its previous density record of 256 chips in the same physical footprint. Seamicro claims that the 10U rack server can replace 60 traditional servers, four network switches and terminal servers and a load balancer.
Apart from the considerable concentration of Intel Atom power, there's also 1.5TB of DDR3 RAM and up to 64 SATA hard drives or solid state drives. Each of the processors can address up to 4GB of RAM and the server comes with its own switch, console server and load balancer. Given that the whole shebang takes up just 10U of rack space, if the data centre cooling is up to the job four SM10000-64HDs can be slotted into a single rack.
For some time now some companies have been promoting the viability of Intel Atom based servers. Seamicro claims to have clients such as dating website Eharmony and software developer Mozilla all running Atom based kit.
With power usage being the biggest factor in what most firms can deploy, the fact is that an Atom processor by itself might not have the horsepower to challenge an AMD Opteron or Intel Xeon, but in parallel, the greater number of chips a builder can fit into a rack, for some workloads that means that the Atom is a viable server chip.
Even though Seamicro's server might contain the same processor that is found in netbooks, when 384 of them are plugged in together with their associated peripherals, the list price is $237,000 for the base configuration. Seamicro said the SM10000-64HD is available now. µ
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