HP Set to Make Servers Powered by ARM Microprocessors

HP to Become First Major Maker to Use ARM-Based Chips

by Anton Shilov
10/26/2011 | 08:24 AM

Hewlett-Packard, the No. 1 maker of servers in the world, may become the first server company in the world to make servers powered by microprocessors that are based on ARM architecture. The company reportedly will use chips specifically designed for servers by Calxeda chip developer.


HP and Calxeda (formerly Smooth-Stone) will be targeting servers based on ultra low-power ARM chips at companies who build large data centers and need to lower energy consumption and their physical footprint, such as Internet and cloud computing companies as well as companies looking to do analysis on their data., according to Dow Jones Newswires.

The first Calxeda reference design for OEM partners and select end-user and developer customers, will be based on an ARM Cortex-A9 quad-core SoC. The system-on-chip will enable users to design servers as dense as 120 ARM quad-core nodes (480 cores) in a 2U enclosure, with an average consumption of about 5W per node (1.25W per core) “including DRAM”, according to the company. The chips are presumably made at Globalfoundries using 28nm or 45nm process technology.

Ultimately, Calxeda plans to provide users ARM architecture-based chips as well as products with the Calxeda microprocessors that will offer 5 – 10 times performance/watt advantage and 15 – 20 times advantage when price is factored in.

Calxeda and HP did not comment on the news-story. Industry checks by X-bit labs indicate that the companies are prepping a joint project.