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Intel launches quad-core Xeon E5-4600 chips

Intel has introduced quad-socket Xeon E5 processors and announced the availability of 11 single-core Xeon E3 chips.

Intel’s Xeon line got a major revamp in March with the launch of the Sandy Bridge E-based Xeon E5-2600 series of processors, however the firm has now introduced four-socket Xeon E5-4600 processors. The firm claims that the Xeon E5-4600 series chips are good for high density deployments.

Intel’s Xeon E5-4600 line offers firms servers with 32 cores and 48 DIMM sockets, which sounds impressive until you remember that AMD’s Bulldozer Opterons can put 128 physical cores in a 2U server. Nevertheless, Intel’s quad-socket Xeon E5-4600 series processors will sit nicely between its dual-socket Xeon E5-2600 workhorses and the niche Xeon E7 chips.

Dell did not waste any time in announcing its quad-socket Poweredge R820 server, a machine that can support four PCI-Express SSDs. The firm also announced its dual-socket Poweredge M420 quarter-height blade server that makes use of Intel’s Xeon E5-2400 processors.

As both AMD and Intel will admit, quad-socket servers might sound impressive but the volume market is in dual-socket and increasingly single-socket servers, which Intel calls micro-servers. For dual-socket systems, Intel launched the Xeon E5-2400 series of processors, which are priced a little more keenly than the Xeon E5-2600 chips.

To cater for single-socket servers, Intel has launched 11 Xeon E3-1200 v2 chips, one of which tipped up at last week’s launch of the Dell Poweredge C5220 server. The Xeon E3-1200 v2 processors are the first in the Xeon range to use Ivy Bridge architecture, with Intel citing a 17W thermal design power (TDP) for the Xeon E3-1220L chip.

Finally Intel said that it will be announcing an Atom-based Xeon chip codenamed Centerton in the second half of this year. Intel’s literature places this chip as a replacement for 15W Xeon parts from yesteryear.

Intel will likely spend the rest of the year pushing its micro-server vision in a bid to counter ARM’s growing presence in the market. While quad-socket and especially dual-socket Xeons are Intel’s bread and butter in the server market, low-power servers are likely to be its future and for that it needs Centerton and perhaps something with even lower TDP to really counter the growing threat posed by ARM.

via Inquirer




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