Feeds

Server start-up says Dell is too hot to be cheap

Single-core bore

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Start-up Azul Systems has made an example out of Dell by pitching the server giant as a seller of hot, pricey gear.

Azul packed a whopping 1,248 processor cores and 800GB of memory in a single, standard server rack and drew just 9.1kW - 137 cores per kW.

Not one to shy away from entering a rival system in a challenge, Azul then stacked a rack full of two-way, 1U PowerEdge 1850 systems from Dell. Stuck with just single core chips, Dell could only muster 84 cores and up to 672GB of memory in the rack. It did, however, beat Azul in one aspect - power consumption. The Dell rack hummed away to the tune of 23.1 kW - or just 3.64 cores per kW.

All told, Azul pumped out 37.7 times better cores/kW than Dell and required 60 per cent less energy than Dell to power 15 times more cores. And we know this because Azul told us so in a press release.

“Azul offers better economics than Dell which is seen in the marketplace as the pinnacle of economic efficiency," said Shahin Khan, chief marketing officer at Azul.

Some of you are probably wondering what the hell an Azul Systems is, while other might ask, "So what?".

To the first item, Azul makes a pretty unique type of server appliance. It starts with the 24-core Vega processor - designed in house - and then links a bunch of the chips together to form up to a 384-way screamer. Which bring us quickly to the second item.

These multicore processor-powered boxes are built to run multithreaded software - in particular Java application servers and other virtual machine-happy apps. Azul claims that this design gives it a major performance edge over more traditional servers.

The company, however, doesn't provide specific performance data publicly. And, as you might note from the Dell comparison, Azul keeps the discussion on power consumption and cores and doesn't say much about raw performance.

Azul is playing on a common theme in the server industry, and that's a move to lower-power parts. At last week's Intel Developer Forum, Intel explained how it would progress far away from screaming hot single-core chips and toward lower-power multicore dynamos. Sun Microsystems and IBM also talk up similar strategies around parts of their server lines.

While many remain hesitant to guarantee Azul as a long-term success, analysts do tend to praise the start-up for pushing servers far in a new direction. Michael Dell may be less forthcoming with such kind words. ®

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Microsoft: Azure isn't ready for biz-critical apps … yet
Microsoft will move its own IT to the cloud to avoid $200m server bill
Oracle reveals 32-core, 10 BEEELLION-transistor SPARC M7
New chip scales to 1024 cores, 8192 threads 64 TB RAM, at speeds over 3.6GHz
Docker kicks KVM's butt in IBM tests
Big Blue finds containers are speedy, but may not have much room to improve
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
Gartner's Special Report: Should you believe the hype?
Enough hot air to carry a balloon to the Moon
Flash could be CHEAPER than SAS DISK? Come off it, NetApp
Stats analysis reckons we'll hit that point in just three years
Dell The Man shrieks: 'We've got a Bitcoin order, we've got a Bitcoin order'
$50k of PowerEdge servers? That'll be 85 coins in digi-dosh
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.