AMD's Seamicro Uncovers Ultra-Dense MicroServers for Big Data Industries

AMD to Launch Opteron "Piledriver" for Microservers in November

by Anton Shilov
09/10/2012 | 11:04 PM

Advanced Micro Devices has announced the SeaMicro SM15000 server, the industry's first microserver for big data. AMD’s SeaMicro SM15000 server revolutionizes computing with the invention of Freedom fabric storage, which extends its Freedom fabric beyond the SeaMicro chassis to connect directly to massive disk arrays, enabling a single ten rack unit system to support more than 5PB of low-cost, easy-to-install storage.

AMD Unveils New Microservers Based on Opteron, Xeon Microprocessor


AMD’s SeaMicro SM15000 system is available today and currently supports the Intel Xeon E3-1260L “Sandy Bridge”.  In November, it will support the next generation of AMD Opteron processors featuring the “Piledriver” core, as well as the newly announced Intel Xeon  E3-1265Lv2 “Ivy Bridge”. In addition to these latest offerings, the AMD SeaMicro fabric technology continues to deliver a key building block for AMD’s server partners to build extremely energy efficient micro servers for their customers. According to AMD, SeaMicro SM15000 server uses one-quarter the power, takes one-sixth  the space and delivers 16 times the bandwidth of the best-in-class alternatives.

AMD’s SeaMicro SM15000 server will be available with 64 compute cards, each holding a new custom-designed single-socket octal core 2.0/2.3/2.8GHz AMD Opteron processor based on the “Piledriver” core, for a total of 512 heavy-weight cores per system or 2048 cores per rack. Each AMD Opteron processor can support 64GB of DDR3 memory, enabling a single system to handle more than 4TB of DRAM and over 16TB of DRAM per rack. AMD’s SeaMicro SM15000 system will also be available with a quad core 2.5GHz Intel Xeon E3-1265Lv2 “Ivy Bridge” for 256 2.5GHz cores in a ten rack unit system or 1024 cores in a standard rack. Each processor supports up to 32 gigabytes of memory so a single SeaMicro SM15000 system can deliver up to 2TB of DRAM and up to eight terabytes of DRAM per rack.

AMD’s SeaMicro SM15000 server also contains 16 fabric extender slots, each of which can connect to three different Freedom fabric storage arrays with different capacities:


“AMD’s SeaMicro SM15000 server enables companies, for the first time, to share massive amounts of storage across hundreds of efficient computing nodes in an exceptionally dense form factor. We believe that this will transform the data center compute and storage landscape,” said Andrew Feldman, corporate vice president and general manager of the data center server solutions group at AMD.

AMD's SeaMicro Enables Low-Cost Storage Solutions

The SM15000 server combines very high density, power efficiency and bandwidth with a new generation of storage technology, enabling a single rack to contain thousands of cores, and petabytes of storage - ideal for big data applications like Apache Hadoop and Cassandra for public and private cloud deployments.   

“Historically, server architecture has focused on the processor, while storage and networking were afterthoughts. But increasingly, cloud and big data customers have sought a solution in which storage, networking and compute are in balance and are shared. In a legacy server, storage is a captive resource for an individual processor, limiting the ability of disks to be shared across multiple processors, causing massive data replication and necessitating the purchase of expensive storage area networking or network attached storage equipment," added Mr. Feldman.

Combining the Freedom supercompute fabric technology with the pioneering Freedom fabric storage technology enables data centers to provide more than five petabytes of storage with 64 servers in a single ten rack unit (17.5" tall) SM15000 system.  Once these disks are interconnected with the fabric, they are seen and shared by all servers in the system. This approach provides the benefits typically provided by expensive and complex solutions such as network-attached storage and storage area networking with the simplicity and low cost of direct attached storage

“AMD’s SeaMicro technology is leading innovation in micro servers and data center compute. The team invented the micro server category, was the first to bring small-core servers and large-core servers to market in the same system, the first to market with a second-generation fabric, and the first to build a fabric that supports multiple processors and instruction sets. It is not surprising that they have extended the technology to storage. The bringing together of compute and petabytes of storage demonstrates the flexibility of the Freedom Fabric.  They are blurring the boundaries of compute, storage and networking, and they have once again challenged the industry with bold innovation, said Zeus Kerravala, founder and principal analyst of ZK Research.

AMD’s SeaMicro SM15000 Technology

AMD’s SeaMicro SM15000 server is built around the industry’s first and only second-generation fabric - the Freedom Fabric. It is the only fabric technology designed and optimized to work with central processor units (CPUs) that have both large and small cores, as well as x86 and non-x86 CPUs. Freedom fabric contains innovative technology including:

SeaMicro Freedom Fabric Storage, which allows the Freedom Supercompute Fabric to extend out of the chassis and across the data center, linking not just components inside the chassis, but those outside as well.