back to article Cheap-ish. Not Intel. Nice graphics. Pick, er, 3: AMD touts Ryzen Pro processors for business

AMD spent a pretty penny marketing its desktop-grade Ryzen Pro chips, to launch this week, but we'll summarize the new line for you in just a dozen words: they are cheaper than rival Intel parts, and have nice enough graphics. These are the sort of processors destined for office PCs. Desktop systems first out of gate with …

  1. K Silver badge

    As an IT Manager (until recently), the biggest complaint I used to receive was how slow the normal Dell desktops were (Latitudes). Intel practically owns the SME market, they also do a lot of back-end wheeling and dealing to keep it that way.

    So it will be interesting to see how many tier-1 suppliers (Dell, HP etc) ship these and in what volumes.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      If you did manage to get an AMD processor, half the time you were stuck with choices of low memory and / or spinning disks.

      1. defiler Silver badge

        half the time you were stuck with choices of low memory and / or spinning disks

        This. I've lost track of the number of times I've seen a decently-specced AMD machine neutered by putting in a peculiarly shit hard disc. I replaced one with an SSD (in an HP laptop), and it became a flying machine!

        1. Frenchie Lad

          BenchMarks

          For a laptop roll out I organised a beauty contest between HP/Dell/Lenovo. Most of the laptops did not impress on the company's main badly written application used as the main benchmark. The reason all these nice shiny laptops under-performed was that this application (from a blue chip auditor) did more writes than reads and the suppliers had used SSDs optimised for reads which in normal circumstances would have been fine. Would you believe that the suppliers replaced the SSDs to handle the situation. In view of the few thousand laptops potentially to be ordered they had no other choice.

          Size does count.

    2. AJ MacLeod

      The "normal" Dell desktops are slow because many of them still (as far as I've seen) have spinning disks. Coupled with a SSD, pretty much any of the mass market CPUs is more than fast enough for any office work.

      I switched to speccing Lenovo a year or two back because Dell were so ridiculously slow in making SSDs a viable option.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "So it will be interesting to see how many tier-1 suppliers (Dell, HP etc) ship these and in what volumes."

      Not sure if our company would be classed as Tier-1 or not (probably not) but we just launched our own range of AMD based kit here in the UK for the first time in many years as an official AMD partner. We also sell Tier-1 brand name kit. I'd guess Tier-1 means global sales, which we don't do.

      Anonymous because I'm not in marketing and am not mention brands :-)

  2. Frumious Bandersnatch Silver badge

    socket?

    Article didn't mention socket type. A quick check on Wikipedia tells me that these aren't a drop-in replacement for previous-gen AMD CPU/APU jobbies (FM2+ → AM4).

    Yeah, I know, I'm a little behind the curve on this one...

    1. iron Silver badge

      Re: socket?

      They're Ryzen, they go in an AM4 socket like all Ryzen chips. This should not be a surprise since Ryzen is not new.

    2. imanidiot Silver badge

      Re: socket?

      Pretty sure they are all on AM4, as all Ryzen (Pro) chips apart from Threadripper are AFAIK. With regards to socket standards, AMD is still doing better than Intel. Those guys seem to be using a different socket for just about every single generation of chip.

    3. J27 Bronze badge

      Re: socket?

      The last-gen A-series APUs also used the AM4 socket.

  3. James 51 Silver badge

    The 2400G should do the vast majority of users.

  4. steve-b
    WTF?

    "AMD also tries to guarantee that its Pro devices leave the factory untampered"

    So they can't for the non-pro? That is a little scary.

    1. Fatman Silver badge

      Tampered?

      <quote>"AMD also tries to guarantee that its Pro devices leave the factory untampered"</quote>

      <comment>So they can't for the non-pro? That is a little scary.</comment>

      Perhaps it is part of the cost trade off????

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "AMD also tries to guarantee that its Pro devices leave the factory untampered"

      Even in this form its worryingly close to the fanmous Guardian April fool spoof supplement on the island of San Serif featuring beached "where terrorism has ben almost totally eradicated".

      "Come and get your AMD Ryzen Pro - we've almost completely eliminated tamperiong of these chips in the factory"

    3. Sloppy Crapmonster

      Not that they can't; they don't try.

  5. W. Anderson

    Microsoft priority for "business" ryzen flawed

    While an ardent AMD supporter in the past, I cannot continue such trend with new Ryzen chips that are quirky running business Linux distributions - Ubuntu, Redhat and SuSE, while the company bends over backward for Microsoft - re: "supports Microsoft's Windows 10 Enterprise Security.", and never mentions efforts to provide "similar/equivalent" first class support for Linux, even on server lines.

    I realize that Microsoft Windows desktops dominate that space, but Linux Servers completely swamp Windows servers in every respect - performance/flexibility, sales - particularly Server farms, reliability and security, not to mention 'compulsory' Docker Container support, so there is no Godly reason for AMD to neglect Linux in their concentrated effort just to kiss Microsoft's butt.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Microsoft priority for "business" ryzen flawed

      These are desktop chips where, as you acknowledge, Windows is likelyu to be dominate in the business sectior. Linux server farms are not desktops ... that's where Epyc is aimed.

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: Microsoft priority for "business" ryzen flawed

        also, from the article: "a string of promises to big biz"

        Does this mean I won't be able to SHUT OFF the remote management crap? NOT being able to do so is a huge 'deal breaker' with me. Although, a lack of Linux/BSD compatibility is a true deal-killer.

    2. CheesyTheClown

      Re: Microsoft priority for "business" ryzen flawed

      Linux doesn’t necessarily have a standard security stack which is probably the issue. There are many Linux kernel and virtualization security features and AMD does generally support those. But Windows makes a fairly well defined set of APIs for the platform as a whole. This means that when you use the Windows encryption APIs, if the CPU supports hardware encryption, it will be hardware accelerated.

      On Linux, you would need to have an OpenSSL implementation that makes use of kernel modules for encryption which may or may not be vendor specific. The same would go for the multitude of other encryption APIs. One downside being that if a bug is found, on Windows, theoretically the next Windows update will fix it for everything. For Linux, every kernel module and every encryption library would have to be updated to support it. That said, the response time to patch these libraries are FAST!!! but if you’re using a Cisco ISE Server, it could take 8 months to a year and still not actually be patched.... which is why using software like this from companies like Cisco should be avoided at all cost.

      AMD is working just as hard as Intel to support Linux in this sense. But Linux also depends very heavily on the community to update their libraries as quickly as possible. So, if a flaw is found in an AMD encryption or security library, it is very possible that the developers won’t have access to an AMD platform to verify against. Though many online CI/CD services exist which probably will.

      That said, I tend to unit and integration test my security code against a very limited set of CPUs, the Intel generations and a handful of specific ARM CPUs. I probably won’t pay the additional money to test against AMD. It wouldn’t justify a high enough volume to be bothered by that. It would be safer to just say “Use at your own risk on AMD”. If AMD ever gains a noticeable market share again, I’ll consider otherwise.

      Of course, I am developing all my server applications against Raspberry Pi now because I simply can’t write code bad enough to justify more than that. I am writing a management system for 2.5 million active users at this time and since everything other than our internet systems are cloud based now, I could never imagine needing more than a few Raspberry PIs to handle the few millions transactions a day we’re processing.

      It was pretty awesome all things considered. A data center at $100 a node after power, storage and connectivity vs our old servers at $120,000 a node. What’s worse is that thanks to in-memory databases and map/reduce, it’s much faster on the Raspberry PIs because we’re using the money saved on IT to focus more on good development practice.

  6. This post has been deleted by its author

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It be on your GuardMI

    > The chips have AMD's GuardMI, ... and a firmware Trusted Platform Module (fTPM) to run critical stuff in secured parts of the system.

    Also a fantastic place to store persistent malware, undetectable by the vast majority of users.

    1. solv

      Re: It be on your GuardMI

      How does one check for this? Are there malwares scanners that boot clean off a usb/optical drive that can specifically check for this.

      For a long time I've been waiting for the day I re format and re install a customers OS to get rid of a virus and find it comes straight back on to the system

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: It be on your GuardMI

        > How does one check for this?

        That's the whole point. It's hidden from the OS, so there's no practical way to check from inside the running system.

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