Breaking it down – an overview of Power8

November 3rd, 2014
Ron Gordon
Director of Power Systems


Need an overview of the Power8 product announcements? Let me break it down for you – short and sweet. On October 6, at Enterprise 2014, IBM announced the anticipated Enterprise Systems based on IBM POWER8 technology. These systems utilize the 12 core-chip, and each node has four sockets, ranging from 8 to 10 to 12 cores per socket. Additionally, each node has 8 PCIe Gen3 slots, which are all X16. The 5 U nodes do not contain any internal disk slots, but they do have the capability to add a new disk drawer via fiber-optics, if needed.

I believe the logic behind “no internal disks” is an emphasis on SAN boot, and moreover, they use PowerVM for virtualization. To that point, PowerVM Enterprise Edition is included in all systems. As before, the Enterprise class systems are supported by AIX, IBM i, and Linux distributions. Facilities like IFLs, Mobile Cores, and included Active Memory Mirroring are available to increase productivity, efficiency, and RAS of these systems.

The announced E870 can be up to two nodes allowing 64 core or 80 core systems running over 4.0 Ghz. The E880 system is announced with up to two nodes, with an IBM Statement of Direction that the E880 will be able to grow to 4 nodes, with up to 192 cores and 16 TB of memory. The new design point varies somewhat from the POWER7 systems, in that a new Mid-Plane 2U unit is required, and contains the dual clocks, dual FSPs, redundant Power Supplies, as well as the Vital Product Information.

The systems, as announced, will provide up to 1711 rPerfs and 911,000 CPWs.

Net: These systems are awesome!!!!!


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