HP Aims for Server Efficiency With Intel-, ARM-Based Moonshot Systems
Hewlett-Packard officials on April 8 launched the first volume server offerings from the company's Project Moonshot, an effort that has spent some 10 years in HP Labs and was first publically talked about in November 2011. HP's aim with Project Moonshot is to create ultra-low-power servers that can help organizations handle the rapid rise in data traffic, storage and processing demands brought on by such trends as cloud computing, big data and the Internet of Things. With Moonshot, HP is creating very dense, highly energy-efficient systems customized for particular workloads and running on a variety of processor architectures, from Intel's x86-based Atom and Xeon platforms to ARM-designed systems-on-a-chip (SoCs) from the likes of Calxeda, Texas Instruments and Marvell Technologies. Dave Donatelli, executive vice president and general manager of HP's Enterprise Group, called the systems the industry's first "software-defined servers"—systems designed for the software workloads they run. Given the rapidly changing demands in the data center, a whole new system architecture was needed, Donatelli said during the launch event. "You can't just make a few tweaks in design to make those problems go away," he said.