Intel today unveiled its new server platforms for the Xeon processor. In total, Intel has introduced six new server boards and several new server chassis options for incorporating the Xeon processor, chipsets and storage processor along with new RAID controllers and server-management software.
The new platform will use the new Intel E7520 and E7320 chipsets, formerly codenamed ‘Lindenhurst’. These are designed to support Intel’s latest Xeon processor which features Intel’s Extended Memory 64 Technology (EM64T), enabling the platform to address a much greater amount of memory. While the theoretical limit is now in the Terabyte range, it will be possible to physically fit up to 16GB of memory to motherboards using the new chipsets, once 2GB modules become available.
The chipsets now offer DDR2 400 memory support, and along with an 800MHz FSB and PCI-Express, will enable the new platform to deliver much greater throughput. This will have a real impact on applications such as data-mining and the amount of transactions that companies can handle simultaneously.
While specially rewritten programmes will be able to take advantage of the new 64-bit extensions, Intel’s is keen to stress the improved 32-bit performance and the ability to address greater amounts of memory.
One of the key features is the Intel IOP332 I/O Storage Processor, designed to improve RAID performance. In fact, Intel is claiming an improvement of up to 50 per cent on previous generation technology in some benchmarks.
“We’ve innovated and integrated the processor, chipset, storage and networking components with these technologies into platforms that deliver a new standard in performance, reliability and cost,” said Abhi Talwalkar, Intel vice president and general manager, Enterprise Platforms Group. “Utilizing these technologies will enable the systems built on these platforms to perform many of the most demanding jobs business, science or government can throw at them.”
In addition Intel's European Server Marketing Manager, Alan Priestley, explained to TrustedReviews how the new chipsets could save business a great deal of money. The new platform supports Demand Based Switching, a technology brought over from Intel’s mobile processor, where it is known as SpeedStep. This enables the processor to enter a power-saving mode when user and system demands are low. With large corporations running multiple racks of CPUs, Demand Based Switching could grow to be very significant in lowering the total cost of ownership, as well as benefiting the environment.
Announcements of server products based on the new technologies are expected from all the major OEMs, such as Dell, in the very near future.
Both the Intel E7520 and 7320 Chipsets, and the Intel IOP332 IO Processor are available now. The Intel 7520 and 7320 are priced at $84 and $70, respectively while the IOP332 IO Processor is priced at $82. All prices are in quantities of 1,000.