Supermicro Intros Intel 'Sandy Bridge' Xeon E5-Based Servers


Server manufacturer Supermicro on Tuesday unveiled over 100 new servers and motherboards based on Intel's new "Sandy Bridge" Xeon E5-2600 and 1600 processors, along with a new "FatTwin" server format targeting lower cooling costs and power consumption.

Supermicro also introduced a new service to its solution providers under which it will pre-install and ship complete rack solutions, said Charles Liang, president and CEO of the San Jose, Calif.-based vendor.

The new product introduction was timed to correspond to Intel's official unveiling on Tuesday of its "Sandy Bridge" Xeon E5 processors.

[Related: Intel Unveils New Xeon E5-2600 Server Processors]

"We can't wait," Liang said. "We've had the products ready a couple of months ago."

Included in the Supermicro "Sandy Bridge" E5-2600/1600 product line are new rack mount servers, new "Twin" servers featuring two dual-socket servers in a single 1U chassis, new models featuring four or six GPUs for use in high performance computing, and a new "MicroCloud" server.

The new servers include models featuring up to eight processor sockets.

All the new servers are now available for shipping, Liang said. "This is the first time we have a buffer inventory to meet customer orders right away from day one," he said.

Included in the Supermicro lineup are the company's new "FatTwin" servers, which builds on its existing "Twin" series of servers. The "FatTwin" servers, which will launch in April, were designed to be run in data centers which use ambient air instead of air conditioning, and are certified to run where the temperature reaches as high as 117 degrees Fahrenheit, or 47 degrees Celsius.

"This is the first time we've formally committed to customers that we support 47 degrees Celsius," Liang said.

The new "Microcloud" servers feature eight uniprocessor nodes in a 3U chassis, and supports processors which consume up to 105 Watts of power, Liang said. Many other servers with this density only support 10-Watt Atom processors, or other processors of up to 60 Watts.

"Our secret? It's our expertise in airflow optimization," he said.

Each MicroCloud server node supports two hot-swap 3.5-inch hard drives as well as a PCIe slot.

Many of Supermicro's new servers also feature a new fully-digital power supply which runs at a consistent 95-percent efficiency at any workload, with just a slight drop in efficiency at a 10-percent load, Liang said. Those new power supplies are priced at only 3 percent to 5 percent higher than traditional power supplies, he said.

To support the new servers, Supermicro is also updating its networking blades. The company six months ago unveiled 10-Gbit Ethernet blade and top-of-rack switches, and within the next two months plans to unveil a model featuring Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE), Liang said.

Supermicro is also introducing a new rack service for partners which is similar to the service currently offered to its largest direct customers, Liang said.

"For some customers, we pre-install the server, storage, and networking in the rack," he said. "So customers don't have to spend weeks to buy and install all the needed cables and accessories. We've offered to our direct customers before, and this is new to the channel. We can even help solution providers by adding their operating systems and applications. Customers can then log in remotely to test the systems before we ship them."