IBM Open Sources Its Power Servers

IBM announced new Power Systems servers that enable data centers to manage big data at high speeds, all built on an open server platform. Through the newly formed OpenPower Foundation, IBM released detailed technical specifications for its Power8 processor, inviting collaborators and competitors alike to innovate on the processor and server platform, providing a catalyst for new innovation.

IBM’s Power architecture is the cornerstone of innovation for the OpenPower Foundation, creating a computing platform available to all. The Foundation – representing 25 global technology providers – was founded by IBM, Google, NVIDIA, Mellanox and Tyan. The group announced today an innovation roadmap detailing planned contributions from several of its members, with IBM's Power Systems as the first servers to exploit OpenPower technology.

Built on IBM’s Power8 technology and designed for managing large data stores, the new scale-out IBM Power Systems servers culminate a $2.4 billion investment, three-plus years of development and exploit the innovation of hundreds of IBM patents. The systems are built from the ground up to harness big data with the new IBM Power8 processor, a sliver of silicon that measures just one square inch, which is embedded with more than 4 billion microscopic transistors and more than 11 miles of high-speed copper wiring. 

“This is the first truly disruptive advancement in high-end server technology in decades, with radical technology changes and the full support of an open server ecosystem that will lead our clients into this world of massive data volumes and complexity," said Tom Rosamilia, senior vice president of IBM's Systems and Technology Group. “There no longer is a one-size-fits-all approach to scale out a data center. With our membership in the OpenPower Foundation, IBM’s Power8 processor will become a catalyst for emerging applications and an open innovation platform.”

Three New Power Systems Solutions for Big Data and Analytics

IBM also announced three new Power Systems solutions optimized for the requirements of big data and analytics solutions. The new technologies, IBM Solution for BLU Acceleration, IBM Solution for Analytics and IBM Solution for Hadoop, are optimized for IBM’s new Power Systems to deliver insights on both structured and unstructured data.

IBM also announced two Linux developments: availability of Ubuntu Server 14.04 LTS, Ubuntu OpenStack and Juju service orchestration tools, on Power8 systems; and introduction of PowerKVM, a Power Systems-compatible version of the popular Linux-based virtualization platform KVM, on all Power8 systems that run Linux exclusively. IBM is offering the latest release of Ubuntu Server, Ubuntu OpenStack and Canonical's Juju cloud orchestration tools on the new Power Systems announced today and all future Power8-based systems. This complements the existing support by IBM for Red Hat and SUSE Linux operating system distributions on its lineup of Power Systems.

The first Power8-based systems to debut are five Power Systems S-Class servers designed for large, scale-out computing environments. With availability beginning June 10, the new scale-out S Class servers include two systems that run Linux exclusively – the Power Systems S812L and S822L servers. The three additional offerings, the Power Systems S814, S822 and S824 servers, provide clients the choice of running multiple operating systems including Linux, AIX and IBM i. 

For more information on IBM Power Servers,  go here.

More details on the OpenPower Foundation are available here.