Microservers: New Market, New Vendors And Lots Of Promise

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Chips: Calxeda EnergyCore ECX-2000

Calxeda in October unveiled its new EnergyCore ECX-2000 ARM modules, which run at up to 1.8GHz compared with 1.1GHz in the Austin, Texas-based company's original ECX-1000 modules. The ECX-2000, like the ECX-1000, has a 32-bit instruction set, but also features an extra 8 bits for memory address extension, allowing each processor to address 16 GB of memory, or four times the original.

The new SoC modules are certified for use with the Canonical Ubuntu 13.10 operating system and work with the Havana release of OpenStack. There also is a development cloud that allows Apache open-source software to run on the modules. They run Inktank's enterprise version of the open-source storage software Ceph as well.

Looking forward, Calxeda plans to launch a 64-bit ARM module, code-named Sarita, which will be pin-compatible with the new ECX-2000. Sarita will be followed by Lago, a higher-performance 64-bit ARM module that is not pin-compatible with the ECX-2000.

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