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Transform to a Digital Business With New Linux Systems

no wait, waitless, Linux
Illustration by Benoit Challand

Last month, IBM debuted new scale-out Power Systems* LC servers that offer an entirely new way to consume Power Systems and showcase waitless computing that offers insights faster and reduces cost. The S822LC for High Performance Computing, the S822LC for Commercial Computing, and the S812LC were designed for big data and deliver the performance and throughput of POWER8* technology combined with the cost optimization of industry standardization. These new Linux* server solutions simplify and optimize data centers and workloads, and are purpose built for scale-out data centers running Linux clouds and clusters. To learn more, IBM Systems Magazine asked Edward Liu, IBM scale-out Power Systems offering manager.

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Q: Tell us more about the S822LC systems. What is the difference between the two versions?
The S822LC for High Performance Computing is ideal for cluster deployments across a broad range of industries and is all about high-performance data analysis. It’s designed so you can access all of your data, build models quickly and iterate faster. It was developed with an open ecosystem of innovators, including OpenPOWER Foundation members, so data scientists can deliver results faster because Power Systems is an open platform that tightly integrates the best acceleration technologies. This version tightly coupled two NVIDIA K80 GPU accelerators so it’s targeted to high-performance computing (HPC) applications.

The S822LC for Commercial Computing is different because the GPU is optional. It’s more about optimizing your data center for cloud, big data and business-critical applications but with an open-standards based system. It’s ideal for data in the cloud. It can deliver superior cloud economics through greater efficiency and agility. We also developed this system with an open ecosystem of innovators including members of the OpenPOWER Foundation.

Q: How is the S812LC different from the other LC servers being announced?
The S812LC is a unique Power Systems design for data that’s built to address the specific memory and multithreading demands that analytics applications built with Hadoop and Spark present. It’s designed for entry and small Spark and Hadoop workloads and offers an economical entry point and can scale with your needs. It’s a storage-dense system with up to 14 large form factor drives—each up to 8 TB capacity—or with solid-state disks, which can be optimized to simplify and accelerate big data and analytics. The S812LC will really help clients use data to act faster and make better decisions.

“All Power Systems servers, including LC products, offer IBM global service, support, and an ecosystem of partners for innovation and other value-adds that x86 cannot compete with.”
—Edward Liu, IBM scale-out Power Systems offering manager

Q: How do these systems fill a gap in Power Systems offerings?
We believe we’re delivering a new way to experience IBM Power Systems technology. These solutions are available online with simple pricing and ordering. They offer flexible service and support so you can tailor it to your business needs. And these systems offer broad, open innovation because the product design is infused with collaboration from an array of technology partners in the OpenPOWER ecosystem. The LC products are specifically targeted to large scale-out deployment models and cluster deployments running software that has resiliency capabilities for system failover for Linux workloads.

Q: In what specific ways does the LC family benefit from using the POWER8 chip?
POWER8 technology is critical to these new systems. It’s like, new analytics engines—meet POWER8! The POWER8 Coherent Accelerator Processor Interface (CAPI) enables solution architects to improve system-level performance. CAPI connects a custom acceleration engine to the coherent fabric of the POWER8 chip. The hybrid solution has a simple programming paradigm while delivering performance well beyond today’s I/O-attached acceleration engines. This means organizations can quickly and efficiently extract data from mountains of information and deliver faster time to results with data-centric HPC systems designed for throughput leadership with integrated accelerators. And this is all done with superior price/performance versus Xeon* Haswell and other servers in the marketplace.

Tami Deedrick is the former managing editor of IBM Systems Magazine, Power Systems edition.



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