IBM unveils new generation of IBM Power servers

by September 9, 2021 0 comments

IBM announced the new IBM Power E1080 server based on the new IBM Power10 processor, designed specifically for hybrid cloud environments. The IBM Power10-equipped E1080 server is engineered to be one of the most secured server platforms and is designed to help clients operate a secured hybrid cloud experience across their entire IT infrastructure.

The IBM Institute of Business Value’s 2021 CEO Study found that, of the 3,000 CEOs surveyed, 56% emphasized the need to enhance operational agility and flexibility when asked what they’ll most aggressively pursue over the next two to three years.

Many see the answer to this need in a hybrid cloud computing model, which combines on-premises resources with cloud-based infrastructure and can offer up to 2.5x greater value than a public cloud-only approach. However, not all hybrid cloud models are designed equally.

The new IBM E1080 was designed to introduce several key features including:

Enhancements for hybrid cloud-like planned industry-first, by the minute metering of Red Hat software including Red Hat OpenShift and Red Hat Enterprise Linux, 4.1x greater OpenShift containerized throughput per core vs x86-based servers, and architectural consistency and cloud-like flexibility across the entire hybrid cloud environment to drive agility and improve costs without application refactoring.

New hardware-driven performance improvements that deliver up to 50% more performance and scalability than its predecessor the IBM Power E980, while also reducing energy use and carbon footprint of the E980, allowing customers to do more with less. The E1080 also features four matrix math accelerators per core, enabling 5x faster inference performance as compared to the E980.

New security tools designed for hybrid cloud environments including transparent memory encryption so there is no additional management setup, 4x the encryption engines per core, allowing for 2.5x faster AES encryption as compared to the IBM Power E980, and security software for every level of the system stack.

A robust ecosystem of ISVs, Business Partners, and support to broaden the capabilities of the IBM Power E1080 and how customers can build their hybrid cloud environment, including a record-setting performance for SAP applications in an 8-socket system. IBM is also launching a new tiered Power Expert Care service to help clients as they protect their systems against the latest cybersecurity threats while also providing hardware and software coherence and higher systems availability.

The IBM Power E1080 server helps deliver on the customer demand for a frictionless hybrid cloud experience, with architectural consistency across the entire hybrid cloud estate to simplify management and seamlessly scale applications to meet the dynamic needs of today’s world.

When leveraging an IBM Power10-based server, like the E1080, with the cloud-based IBM Power Virtual Server in a hybrid cloud format, the architectural consistency across resources means the often-bespoke mission-critical applications that tend to reside on-premises can be moved into the cloud as workloads and needs demand. This is designed to help clients avoid the prohibitive costs and time required associated with refactoring for a different architecture.

The IBM Power E1080 also has the capability to scale instantly with Power Private Cloud for Dynamic Capacity, allowing users to scale up and down with unused CPU capacity as needed and only pay extra for the additional resources they used. This can help improve operational efficiency and flexibility while avoiding server sprawl and lengthy procurement processes by bringing a cloud-like payment model to the data center.

Further enhancing the cloud-like economics for local hardware, the IBM Power E1080 is the first on-premises system planned to support metering by the minute for both Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Red Hat OpenShift, extending capabilities already available on IBM Power Virtual Server. Together, this is designed for even greater customer control of when, how, and where their applications are deployed.

OpenShift containerized throughput per core vs compared x86-based servers, allowing for more workloads to be deployed simultaneously within a single system.

The IBM Power E1080 server is built around the revolutionary IBM Power10 processor. Designed by IBM and manufactured by Samsung using 7nm EUV process technology, IBM Power10 is IBM’s first commercially available 7nm processor.

With IBM Power10 at the heart of the system, the IBM Power E1080 server can deliver up to 30% more performance per core and over 50% better total capacity at the socket and system level as compared to the previous generation IBM Power E980 server. This translates to 33% lower energy consumption for the same workload on the IBM Power E1080 as compared to the IBM Power E980, giving customers the platform to consolidate workloads and save on hardware and software costs. For example, an IBM Power customer projected that they could consolidate an industry-standard transactional database running across 126 x86-based servers down to two IBM Power E1080 servers. This projection would translate to an 80% reduction in server energy use and a 70% reduction in per-core software licenses for the customer.

IBM Power10 also provides new enhancements for securing consolidated workloads. The Power10 processor has the capability to scale with transparent memory encryption, which is designed to simplify and support end-to-end security without impacting performance. Compared to IBM Power9, accelerated encryption performance is enabled by IBM Power10 having 4x the number of encryption engines per core and translates into a 2.5x faster per-core performance for AES encryption compared to the previous generation of IBM Power servers.

IBM offers security control solutions at every level of the system stack, from the foundational hardware like the processor and memory to key software like the operating system, hypervisor, and applications. The E1080 uses IBM PowerVM as its built-in hypervisor, which has significantly fewer Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) than competitive hypervisors as catalogued by the US Government National Institute of Standards and Technology’s National Vulnerabilities Database (NVD).

Finally, the IBM Power E1080 server and Power10 processor bring new enterprise AI capabilities right to where the data resides, on the server. IBM Power10’s four Matrix Math Accelerator (MMA) engines per core can drive up to 5x improvements for AI inference as compared to the IBM Power E980 server.

While the new increased MMAs provide hardware-focused improvement, the IBM Power E1080 also supports bring-your-own-model capabilities with IBM Auto-AI and “no-code” tools. The IBM Power E1080 also supports the Open Neural Network Exchange or ONNX. Trained AI models available on ONNX, using some of the most popular frameworks like TensorFlow, PyTorch, and more, can be deployed on the IBM Power E1080 from x86-based servers with no code changes required.

The new IBM Power10 family is supported by a wide range of ISVs, IBM Business Partners, and other external stakeholders that recognize the value of the new platform’s capabilities for their customers.

Leveraging the SAP Application Performance Standard values benchmark, which measures performance for key SAP applications, the IBM Power E1080 has set a record for an 8-socket system, achieving over 174,000 2-tier benchmark users, 40% greater than the closest x86-based platform.

In addition to SAP, several other ISVs that provide a wide range of services including databases, secure medical records processing, security, AI, and more have announced support for IBM Power10.

To help these services get into the hands of customers, IBM is working closely with our channel partners so that they can work closely with customers and build solutions that work for them.

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