back to article IBM to launch cheap 'n' cheerful Power server for i and AIX userbase

IBM's i and AIX customer bases can buy a cheaper box; its latest Power S812 server comes with just one socket and a single or quad-core processor. It's for relatively light use, in the retail area for example, and as an entry point for non-compute-intense workloads. The S812 box, separate from the 2014 S812L Linux system, is …

  1. bobajob12
    Thumb Up

    Respect

    I know AS/400 (sorry, IBM i) isn't trendy, or fashionable, but I have deep respect for it. Like VMS, it Just Works, and many of the ideas in it are really stellar (e.g. cpu architecture independence without recompilation!) - all the more so when you consider when it was developed. Long may it continue.

    1. Foxtrot Oscar
      Happy

      Re: Respect

      @ bobajob12.... Yep, affirm. I started my career on System/36 and System/38 in 1985 (two very different machines)... I saw the AS/400 at the NEC in 1988 and went contract because I thought - here is a machine that is going to sell! I have worked on the platform ever since. And the software I developed, nearly 30 years ago will still run on the current hardware. Hats off to IBM and Dr. Frank Soltis for that - and also to the thousands of AS/400s that are most likely sitting in a dark room, doing their stuff 24/7, just like they were built to do - without an IT department. It really is an incredible machine/architecture... When you've spent the best part of your life in IT - you get to see a bit - I aint never seen a better business computer.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Performance

    Intel Xeons are cheaper and faster, and you dont need to recompile all your Linux software. Which Linux user would want to switch over to a more expensive, slower and locked in POWER server? Why pay more for less performance?

    1. Dusk

      Re: Performance

      I suspect I'm replying to Kebabbert, which never goes well, but here goes...

      First off, these systems are for companies that are already in the ecosystem. iSeries users tend to have minimal compute needs (a huge percentage of the iseries installed base is on one-socket Power5 machines; some are on older systems) and a single-core iseries-capable P8 lets them get a fully-licensed turnkey machine for a relatively low price, while still getting a performance upgrade over legacy machines. They can then keep up with newer OS releases and the like. In general, folks moving to a single-core iSeries machine are not going to be greenfield customers.

      As to Power8 in general - we run Linux on Power8 because the perf/$ is actually pretty damn good. 8-core S812LC starts under US$5k. For our workload, this Power8 CPU config beats an Intel Xeon E5-2650v4, partially due to the much larger caches and extremely high (over 90GB/s STREAM Triad!) amount of memory bandwidth. There's also some really nice edge features (memory compression) that are kinda cool, even though their support in Linux can be kludgey - for instance, Power8 memory compression basically runs as a hardware assist to zswap, as opposed to on AIX, where the system actually sees more available RAM. We'll probably grab Power9 too, since early performance estimates look superb, depending on whether IBM improves their horrendously unpleasant procurement process for OpenPower systems.

      I'm not saying the Big UNIX stuff is competitively priced with x86, because it isn't - but then, neither is anybody else's. But for OpenPower machines, pricing really isn't terrible.

  3. Tom Paine Silver badge

    "cheap"?

    How "cheap"? Under £10K?

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Someone still uses AIX??? Don't know why it would need newer hardware, all IBM ever does with AIX these days is re-compile it for newer C-libraries, and that's only because their current crop of trapped customers need the newer libraries. Otherwise AIX would be wallowing in it's pit of bit-rot.

  5. jaydefaro

    S812

    Can someone assist?

    What is the costs of the S812 1 core for iSeries, smallest possible configuration, for 3 users, development only?

    Does the OS V7.3 support the S36EE environment?

    Please advise.

    Jay

    1. 10111101101

      Re: S812

      You might have better luck calling IBM sales or customer service where you can receive a custom quote. When it comes to IBM i, the cost of each machine is never the same.

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