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back to article AMD plunks custom Opteron into SM15000 microservers

AMD's SeaMicro microserver and fabric unit has started shipping the "Piledriver" Opteron server nodes for its new SM15000 machines, announced in September sporting quad-core "Ivy Bridge" Xeon E3 processors as well as promising the then-impending Piledrivers. At the time, AMD did not divulge what Piledriver part it would use, and …

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FAIL

The wattage is secret?

So it must be much higher than it should be/was designed to be, otherwise it would be a selling point.

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Re: The wattage is secret?

I'd expect it to be similar to the Intel chips

http://www.seamicro.com/products/sm15K_overview

They list the same number of sockets for the Opteron Piledriver vs Intel Xeon. If it was significantly more wattage I wouldn't think they could fit as many, if it was significantly less then they should be able to fit more sockets in there.

Also Opterons have some pretty fancy power management these days, the TDP Power cap is neat. I have seen power caps from a server as a whole level but not specifically targeted at the CPU. I'm sure they leverage this to a large extent to maximize efficiency.

I talked with Seamicro a few years ago they cold called me and tried to sell me on their stuff at the time. They were still on the 32-bit atom with 4GB memory limit I think it was, and it just wasn't adequate- we were a java shop and it was very common to have at least 8GB allocated to a VM - systems would typically have at least 24 if not 32GB of memory. Nice to see they are finally supporting larger memory sizes, with this new custom CPU they can match the # of cores/chassis (512) that they offer in the Atom series. Would be really interesting to see the raw performance comparing the 512 Atom cores vs the 512 Opteron cores. I have a feeling I know who would win <g> but still would be fun to see for me anyways.

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Silver badge
Headmaster

Good writing should not require multiple reading passes

"AMD's SeaMicro microserver and fabric unit has started shipping the "Piledriver" Opteron server nodes for its new SM15000 machines, announced in September sporting quad-core "Ivy Bridge" Xeon E3 processors as well as promising the then-impending Piledrivers."

I'm sorry, after reading that first sentence 3 times in an attempt to understand what it means I decided to give up on the rest of the article.

The specific part that is confusing is this;

"shipping the "Piledriver" Opteron server nodes for its new SM15000 machines [...] sporting quad-core "Ivy Bridge" Xeon E3 processors"

After several re-reads I gather that you are trying to say here that AMD released Xeon based versions of the server some time in the past while promising a Piledriver version later on and they are delivering on the Piledriver part of that promise now.

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Headmaster

Re: Good writing should not require multiple reading passes

Makes perfect sense to me.

"AMD's SeaMicro microserver and fabric unit has started shipping the "Piledriver" Opteron server nodes for its new SM15000 machine"

They've just started shipping the server with the new opteron series CPUs

announced in September sporting quad-core "Ivy Bridge" Xeon E3 processors as well as promising the then-impending Piledrivers."

The original SM15000 was announced in September with the quad core ivy bridge, and it was said back then that it would have piledriver opertrons in the future.

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Devil

Probably under 25W

Quote: It is hard to say how much lower the wattage can go

Not really, we live in the days when you can control it in software. You can test it ya know :) Last couple of frequency steps tend to nearly double the power envelope so pushing it back from 3.6 to 2.7 will probably halve it (at least). My educated guess (based on my own experiments and tuning systems with other AMD chips) is that we are looking at sub-25W here (if not even 15W).

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It's all good

As long as AMD is delivering what customers desire, then it's all good.

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