Intel's New 18-Core Xeon Sparks Server Bonanza

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Intel Xeon

Intel launched its latest Xeon family of processors that boasts as many as 18 cores, a 3X performance boost, and support for DDR4 memory for fast application performance in a world quickly moving to software-defined architectures.

The new processor families, known as Grantley, consist of the E5-2600 v3 and E5-1600 v3 processors. Intel unleashed 32 SKUs and an additional 20 custom SKUs designed for customers and their specific workload needs. The processors are available Monday, with a host of system vendors including rolling out servers in tandem with Intel's news.

"We are very excited to collectively re-architect the data center with this new Xeon platform. With the new Xeon chips we move to a software-defined world -- from static to dynamic, from siloed to open, and from proprietary to open standards running on standard architecture," said Diane Bryant, senior vice president and general manager of the Data Center Group at Santa Clara, Calif.-based Intel, at a press event unveiling the new processors.

[Related: Partners: Intel's Xeon Grantley Chip Will Be Big Revenue Driver]

The Xeon chip highlights include baked-in monitoring and management features for automated deployment and improved servicing capabilities. The processor also emphasizes three workload types, including compute horsepower, storage optimization and the ability to juggle a variety network workloads. Another highlight includes a performance increase with up to a 3X boost in horsepower compared with previous Ivy Bridge generation processors.

The move to software-defined infrastructure is inevitable and necessary, Bryant said. Intel's Xeon processors are optimized for that transition with nearly 50 SKUs optimized for specific customer needs, she said.

Intel's Xeon chip news coincided with the flurry of new system announcements from Cisco Systems, Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo, Dell and IBM. Intel said that as of Monday's launch there are 65 servers shipping from various OEMs with hundreds more to launch later this year.

NEXT: System Vendors Shipping Xeon Servers

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