Spotlight: AMD Partners Roll Out Magny-Cours Servers

AMD Grabs Lead With 12-Core Opteron 6000

Advanced Micro Devices on Monday officially released its new Opteron 6000 series of 12-core processor, code named Magny-Cours, jumping ahead of arch-rival Intel in one of the most important processor metrics: number of cores per socket.

It is the first time AMD has been ahead of Intel in the number of cores per processor since it beat Intel with the introduction of dual-core processors in 2006.

The new processors support DDR3 memory, and its four memory channels per processor exceeds the three memory channels per processor featured by Intel

The new Opteron 6000, when paired with AMD's new 5600 series chipset, also offers AMD's new HyperTransport 3.0 technology and supports PCI Express 2.0.

Prices start as low as $1,386 in 1,000-unit quantities.

New Architecture, New Socket

Magny-Cours is a 45-nanometer processor that uses a new AMD socket, Socket G34, which was designed for DDR3 memory.

As a result, it marks the end of the line for AMD's DDR2-designed Socket F, which has been supporting dual-core, quad-core and six-core Opteron chips since 2006.

Going forward, AMD plans the first refresh of its Opteron processors next year when the company expects to transition to a 32-nanometer fabrication process and its future Bulldozer core architecture. At that time, Magny-Cours is slated to be replaced by a new line of Opteron 6000 processors code-named "Interlagos," while its Opteron 4000 series "Lisbon" processors will be replace by new processors code-named "Valencia."

AMAX: Up To 96 Cores In 2U

AMAX, a Fremont, Calif.-based custom system builder, is releasing a new generation of servers and workstations that are fully optimized for the new 12-core AMD 6000 Series Opteron processors.

The company's new line of Magny-Cours-based solutions includes a new 2U Quad Node server with four hot-swappable dual-socket computing nodes supporting up to 96 processing cores per unit, as well as 1U dual-socket and four-socket servers which support up to 48 processing cores in a 1U form factor.

AMAX's servers include memory capacity of up to 16 or 32 DIMM modules, universal I/O designs for flexible I/O customization and investment protection, and high-efficiency voltage regulation modules and power supplies to reduce energy use.

Dell's PowerEdge R815

Dell on Monday unveiled its new PowerEdge R815 2U rackmount server featuring the new AMD Opteron Magny-Cours processors.

The PowerEdge R815 is a four-socket server which scales up to 48 processing cores and up to 32 DIMMs. It can be configured with 1-GB, 2-GB, 4-GB, and 8-GB DIMMs for a total memory capacity of up to 256 GBs.

The new server can be configured with up to six 2.5-inch hot-swappable SAS, SATA, or SSD drives for a maximum internal storage capacity of up to 3.0 TB.

They also include a Sliding ReadyRails mounting interface for four-post racks, a static ReadyRails mounting interface for four-post and two-post racks, and optional support for a cable management arm.

HP: 27X Performance-Per-Watt Boost

Hewlett-Packard on Monday introduced three new HP ProLiant G7 servers based on the AMD Opteron 6100 Series processors. HP said the new servers deliver a 27-times performance-per-watt boost over previous generations.

The new servers also include HP Thermal Logic, which the company said can help cut power consumption as much as 96 percent using the vendor's "sea of sensors" technology that tracks and automatically adjusts server fans based on activity.

The three new rackmount server model all feature two sockets and up to 24 DIMM slots for a maximum memory capacity of up to 256 GBs.

The HP ProLiant SL165z G7 has room for up to two large form factor drives and four small factor drives. The HP ProLiant DL165 G7 can hold up to four large form factor and eight small factor drives. The HP ProLiant DL385 G7 has room for up to six large form factor and 16 small factor drives.

The new HP ProLiant G7 servers are slated to start shipping in April with prices starting at $1,449.

Nor-Tech: Performance And Power Efficiency

Northern Computer Technologies (Nor-Tech), a Burnsville, Minn.-based custom system builder for other solution providers, on Monday unveiled its Voyageur 12000 series of AMD Opteron 6000 processor-based servers.

The Voyageur 12000 can be configured with up to four processors for a total of up to 48 processor cores. They feature the next-generation AMD Direct Connect Architecture 2.0, which Nor-Tech said more than doubles the memory bandwidth and provides nearly twice the I/O bandwidth of previous generation two-socket and four-socket servers.

SGI: Up To 41,760 Cores Per Container

SGI, Fremont, Calif., on Monday said it will support the AMD Opteron 6000 series processor across all of the company's scale-out server platforms.

This includes support across SGI's entire design-to-order server portfolio, including CloudRack and Rackable scale-out servers and SGI InfiniteStorage servers. SGI's ICE Cube modular data center also gets AMD Opteron processor support for the first time.

Because of the Magny-Cours' 12-core design, SGI said it can offer server density of up to 1,824 cores per rack with its CloudRack C2 servers and up to 2,208 cores per rack with its Rackable half-depth servers. Its ICE Cube modular data centers can now scale to up to 41,760 cores per container.

The Magny-Cours-based CloudRack and Rackable servers are currently available. SGI expects to release AMD Opteron processor-based configurations of its Altix ICE high performance computing (HPC) clusters and Octane III personal supercomputers later this year.

Supermicro: Nine New Magny-Cours-based Servers

Supermicro is supporting the 12-core AMD Opteron 6100 Magny-Cours processors in two ways.

For many custom system builders, Supermicro is providing motherboards and barebones systems that can be fully configured before shipping to customers.

The San Jose, Calif.-based vendor is also introducing a line of nine new Magny-Cours-based servers for customers.

At the entry-level is a 1U rackmount, single-socket server with room for up to 8 DIMMs of DDR3 memory and four hot-swap SATA hard drives.

The company also unveiled three dual-socket models, including two 1U and one 2U versions. The 1U servers both support up to 16 DIMMs, with one supporting three hot-swap SATA drive bays and the other supporting four bays. The 2U version is similar, but supports up to eight SAS or SATA hard drives.

Also new are three quad-socket models all supporting up to 32 memory DIMMS. One model supports up to three hot-swap SATA drive bays in 1U of rack space, the second up to six hot-swap SAS/SATA hard drive bays in 2U, and the third up to six hot-swap SATA hard drive bays in 2U.

Two other new models support up to four hot-plug dual-socket server nodes, 1 TB of memory, and 12 hot-swap SATA hard drives in 2U. One of these models includes InfiniBand as part of the total solution.

All the new servers include onboard Intelligent Platform Management Interface (IPMI) 2.0 remote management and high-efficiency 80 PLUS Gold-Level certified power supplies.