IBM has disclosed the first servers based on its next-generation Power8 processors, which it is touting as the best solution for enterprise workloads involving big data and analytics.
The project has the backing of partners in its OpenPower Foundation such as Canonical with a Power version of Ubuntu and its OpenStack cloud build.
IBM unveiled the first Power8 servers at the Open Innovation Summit in San Francisco, touting the new systems as being designed for the era of big data. To back this up, the firm also announced three Power Systems solutions for big data and analytics, comprising the IBM Solution for BLU Acceleration, IBM Solution for Analytics and IBM Solution for Hadoop, all designed to run on the new systems.
Hailing the new products, Tom Rosamilia, senior vice president for IBM's Systems and Technology Group, said that the Power8 platform is set to become a catalyst for emerging applications, with the help of IBM's OpenPower partners.
"This is the first truly disruptive advancement in high-end server technology in decades, with radical technology changes and the full support of an open server ecosystem that will seamlessly lead our clients into this world of massive data volumes and complexity," he said.
The five new Power Systems S-Class servers will be available from 10 June. Two models – the S812L and S822L – will ship only with Power Linux, while the S814, S822 and S824 will provide customers with a choice of Linux, AIX or IBM i (formerly OS/400).
All are available in one and two-socket versions, in either 2U or 4U rack-mount chassis configurations, with prices starting at $7,973 (£4,748).
The Power8 itself, which was announced last August, is a massively powerful chip with 12 processor cores, each capable of running up to eight threads, with clock speeds in the 4GHz region and capable of supporting up to 1TB of memory per processor socket.
Meanwhile, the OpenPower Foundation, which IBM launched last year to push its Power architecture as the platform of choice for enterprises building scale-out data centre infrastructure, now comprises 25 firms, including Google and Nvidia.
One of the newer members is Canonical, which last week launched the latest release of its Linux platform Ubuntu Server 14.04 LTS with support for Power processors.
This release integrates the latest OpenStack cloud framework, enabling IBM customers to build and operate a private cloud built on the Power8 systems. IBM said that this complements the existing support for Red Hat and Suse Linux on its complete line-up of Power Systems.
At the Open Innovation Summit, OpenPower Foundation members also showcased reference open hardware and software based around the Power platform, including a development and reference design from motherboard and system vendor Tyan.
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