IBM Linux Servers Advance Artificial Intelligence

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IBM revealed a series of servers designed to help propel cognitive workloads and to drive greater data center efficiency. Featuring a new chip, the Linux-based lineup incorporates innovations from the OpenPOWER community intended to deliver higher levels of performance and greater computing efficiency than available on any x86-based server.

Collaboratively developed with some of the world’s leading technology companies, the new Power Systems are uniquely designed to propel artificial intelligence, deep learning, high performance data analytics and other compute-heavy workloads, which can help businesses and cloud service providers save money on data center costs.

The three new systems are an expansion of IBM’s Linux server portfolio comprised of IBM’s specialized line of servers co-developed with fellow members of the OpenPOWER Foundation. The new servers join the Power Systems LC lineup designed to outperform x86-based servers on a variety of data-intensive workloads.

“The user insights and the business value you can deliver with advanced analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence is increasingly gated by performance.  Accelerated computing that can really drive big data workloads will become foundational in the cognitive era," said Doug Balog, general manager of POWER, IBM Systems. "Based on OpenPOWER innovations from partners such as NVIDIA, our new OpenPOWER Linux servers with POWERAccel set a new standard for these workloads compared with x86 processor-based servers."

Industry advancements including artificial intelligence, self-driving cars, real-time fraud protection and the development of life-saving drugs require new levels of computing power. To address this need, IBM has taken an open development approach to system design to more fully take advantage of acceleration technologies.

IBM has collaborated with fellow technology industry leaders through the OpenPOWER Foundation to radically re-design the platform at the chip and system levels by incorporating the use of a wide range of accelerators to achieve greater levels of performance than available on traditional commodity servers. Through a family of interconnect innovations collectively known as POWERAccel, contributors to the OpenPOWER ecosystem will continue to develop systems and other solutions on the POWER platform that are optimized for accelerated applications.

The open collaboration includes the new IBM Power System S822LC for High Performance Computing server, featuring a newly designed processor, the IBM POWER8 with NVIDIA NVLink. The new system directly connects the new IBM POWER8 processor with NVIDIA Tesla P100 Pascal GPUs through NVIDIA NVLink, a high-speed, bidirectional interconnect. NVIDIA NVLink is embedded at the silicon level and incorporated into the overall system design. This tight coupling of IBM and NVIDIA technology enables data to flow five times faster than on an x86-based system, IBM states.

Detailed specifications can be found at