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Supermicro Computer, a leading maker of servers and server components, announced availability of its server platforms designed for the new breed of low-voltage (LV) Intel Xeon processors code-named Sossaman. The availability of such server products will allow Supermicro to address the markets where power consumption and performance per watt matter a lot.

“Supermicro continues to address the diverse needs of the server market with the integration of low-voltage server solutions. Indeed, these new Sossaman-based solutions deliver world-class performance per watt and optimized price-performance ratio, further strengthening Supermicro’s leadership over competitive enterprise solutions,” said Charles Liang, Supermicro chief executive and president.

Supermicro’s new Super X6DLP-4G2 and super X6DLP-EG2 server mainboards are based on the E7520 (Lindenhurst) memory controller hub (MCH) and 6300ESB I/O controller hub (ICH), feature 8 DIMMs for up to 16GB of ECC registered DDR2 memory, support both PCI-X or/and PCI-Express cards via universal expansion slots as well as onboard Gigabit Ethernet controller.

The Sossaman is to be based on the dual-core Yonah micro-architecture – which is marketed under Core Duo trademark – and is compatible with current Intel Xeon DP chipsets, such as Intel E7520. Still due to different form-factor, the new Xeon DP chips will require separate infrastructure. The chip is expected to have power consumption of 31W when working at about 2.00GHz, whereas its low-voltage brother is likely to consume approximately 15W when operating at 1.67GHz. By contrast, current dual-core Xeon DP chips at 2.80GHz consume up to 135W in typical conditions. 

According to performance slides allegedly demonstrated by Supermicro at a Japanese event, dual-processor setup running two Intel Xeon DP processors code-named Sossaman at 2.0GHz was about 20% faster compared to a system featuring two Intel Xeon 3.60GHz processors with 1MB L2 cache, but was outperformed by about 27% by 2-way server with Intel dual-core Xeon 2.80GHz in Whetstone floating point unit (FPU) benchmark. Still, Sossaman chips seem to be slightly better performers when it comes to arithmetic logic unit (ALU) performance.

“The new dual-core Intel Xeon processor LV offers businesses a compelling solution for high-density, thermally challenged data centers,” said Kirk Skaugen, vice president and general manager of server platforms group at Intel.

Intel says that a lot of server deployments these days require low power consumption. In order to address that market, the company recently validated Intel Pentium M processors for its server platforms and also supplies Low-Voltage Intel Xeon chips with thermal design power (TDP) of 30W and 55W. Processors with 30W consumption based on the NetBurst architecture operate at relatively low clock-speed and may not offer performance, which would satisfy clients.

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