HP Using ARM-based Processors In New Servers

Intel and ARM have for some time now been sidling up to each

other, with both sides taking aim at the others’ perceived areas of dominance

and now ARM is looking to target the server market.

Intel’s x86 processors have dominated the computer server market

for many year, but British-based upstart ARM believes its low-power chips

will make running servers a lot more cost effrective.

The ARM-based processors will be seen in a new server from HP called Redstone,

with the company calling the new initiative Project Moonshot.

The processors will be built by Texas-based company Calxeda,

who will use ARM’s designs to build 32-bit quad-core processors called the

EnergyCore. It has been rumoured that HP would put 64-bit chips into its

new servers, as ARM had announced a new 64-bit instruction set last week.

HP ARm-based server redstone

The reason HP is choosing to go with ARM-based chips is all

down to the power- and space-saving afforded by the chips. The EnergyCore System-on-a-Chip

claims to use just 1.5 watts per processor.

As a result of the HP server giving off less heat – due to the

decreased power – the company claims that some users would experience a

space-saving of up to 94 per cent.

HP ARm-based server redstone

But of course there is a trade-off in terms of processing power,

with HP admitting the ARM-based chips would be suitable for delivering static

web pages, but not tasks that involved heavy number-crunching. As a result HP

will also be offering Intel’s energy efficient Atom processor as an

alternative.

If HP’s new server proves popular, it could open up a huge

new licensing stream for ARM considering HP is currently the world’s largest

server manufacturer with 30 per cent of the market.

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