Intel Talks Server Design, Atom, Xeon Chips at IDF Beijing
Down the road will come the separation of the processors, memory and I/O, which then will be housed in modular subsystems. This will enable organizations to upgrade these subsystems without having to completely upgrade the whole system. Project Scorpio—which involves Chinese companies Alibaba, Baidu, Tencent and China Telecom—is an illustration of what Intel is talking about, Graff said. Intel in 2013 also will roll out new processors for data center systems designed to bring greater performance, power efficiency, I/O capabilities and security features, according to Graff. The most aggressive roadmap is with the low-power Atom system-on-a-chip (SoC) platform, including the upcoming “Avoton” and “Rangeley” chips. Avoton will be the second-generation Atom—after “Centerton,” released in December 2012—for ultra low-power microservers, including HP’s Moonshot systems. The 22-nanometer chips are sampling now and will be released in the second half of 2013. The microserver segment is one of several arenas in the increasingly intense competition between Intel and ARM. HP will use chips from Intel as well as ARM partners—such as Calxeda and Marvell Technologies—in their Moonshot systems, with officials saying the use of multiple chip architectures is a key part of creating their “software-defined servers.”“By the end of 2013, we will have four 64-bit Atom products—two for microservers, one for storage and one uniquely configured for networks,” she said. In mid-2013, Intel will release the 22-nm “Haswell,” the next generation of the company’s Xeon E3 portfolio that will include integrated graphics and a power consumption of 13 watts, down from the current chip’s 17 watts. The integrated graphics will be key for video workloads, Graff said. Also this year, Intel will release media software developer kits for Linux and Windows. In the third quarter, Intel will release “Ivy Bridge-EP,” a 22-nm Xeon E5 chip with improved energy efficiency and security capabilities. Following in the fourth quarter will be “Ivy Bridge-EX” in the Xeon E7 family, which will triple the memory capacity—up to 12 TB in an eight-socket node—over the current E7 chips, and will offer improved reliability and uptime by running Intel’s Run Sure Technology. The Intel Developer Forum this week in Beijing will show off the range of offerings that are coming from Intel, Graff said. “We are bringing innovation at the processor and rack levels,” she said.
Rangeley will be an Atom SoC designed specifically for networking devices, Graff said.