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E4 Computer Engineering Announces Servers for Workloads in HPC, Cloud and Big Data Applications

March 17, 2015

When it comes to dealing with the tsunami of structured and unstructured data engulfing data centers having high performance computing platforms has become critical as IT department grapple with accommodating current and future needs.  Leading Italian hardware solutions company E4 Computer Engineering to address those needs has announced a new ThunderX ARMv8-A enabled ARKA dense computing sever product line.

As E4 points out, the new Cavium ThunderX- based systems are designed to take advantage of successful ARKA modular servers. This means they have what it takes to handle the rigorous requirements of specific workloads in the Cloud, Big Data and HPC applications. They also are highly efficient in the critical area of power consumption.

A lot processing power under the hood

E4 is rightfully touting the fact that while previous ARM-based technology products were limited to 32 bit and used only by early adopters and developers, the ARKA Series is the first production ready 64-bit ARM server platform that integrates ThunderX along with Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) and InfiniBand (IB).  They also note that, “The ARKA series is equipped with full support of the extensive software ecosystem including Linux OS, libraries, compilers and applications. It is also equipped with the following development tools: NVIDIA CUDA 6.5 (compilers, libraries, SDK) MPI libraries, GNU compilers.”

Cavium’s ThunderX product family features:

  • High performance custom cores
  • Single and dual socket configurations
  • High memory bandwidth
  • Large memory capacity
  • Integrated hardware accelerators
  • Integrated feature rich high bandwidth network and storage IO
  • Fully virtualized core and IO,
  • Scalable high bandwidth, low latency Ethernet fabric

This all translates into not just a lot of processing power but what is characterized as best in class performance per dollar and performance per watt. In addition, the ThunderX processor family is fully compliant with ARMv8 architecture specifications as well as ARM's SBSA and SBBR standards and is widely supported by industry leading OS, Hypervisor and SW tool and application vendors.

"We are very happy with the collaborative work done together with Cavium to develop the ARKA platform and are confident that the route to low-power efficiency for HPC is getting paved," said Piero Altoe BDM E4 Computer Engineering.

"ThunderX powered ARKA Series server provides a versatile and flexible platform for the hyper-scale data center," said Rishi Chugh, Director, Data Center Processor Group at Cavium. "E4 Computer Engineering extensive experience in HPC solution will enable highly competitive ThunderX based ARKA servers that are optimized for the Cloud, Web 2.0, HPC, and High Density Storage."

"We are excited to see E4 Computer Engineering launching their first workload optimized ARM based server platform. This will drive momentum and further accelerate the deployment of ARM servers in the HPC and Cloud Infrastructure," said Filippo Mantovani, Senior Researcher, Barcelona Supercomputing Center.

The announcement of the new series of high performance servers highlights just how much innovation is going on in all three pillars of next generation ICT—Compute, Storage and Networking — with respect to data center transformation. Indeed, the Compute side of things, aside from all of the attention being paid to the commoditization of hardware, tends not to make headlines.  It is one of the reasons why the availability of the new E4 Computer Engineering series is more than of just passing interest. 

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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