Intel targets microservers with 8-core Atom SoC

Intel targets microservers with 8-core Atom SoC

Summary: Atom C2000 SoCs offer the performance of Xeon processors with the added benefit of the extra features found on SoCs.

TOPICS: Servers, Intel

Intel's Atom low-power processors have found their way into all sorts of devices. Now the chip giant is mounting an assault on the server market with a new 8-core Atom SoC (System-on-a-Chip) part designed with bother performance and efficiency in mind.

The Atom C2000, codenamed Avoton and Rangeley, is based on Intel's 22-nanometer Silvermont architecture and has efficiency at its core, pushing aside bit power consumers such as the Xeon and Phi parts.

Avoton is aimed at microservers, and is the successor to the Atom S1200 line, codenamed Centerton. Rangeley, on the other hand, is aimed at network and communications equipment.

(Source: Intel)

The C2000 can handle up to 64GB of datacenter class ECC DDR3RAM, and comes with built-in controllers for Ethernet, USB 2.0, SATA and second-gen PCI Express. It also comes equipped with a cryptographic accelerator.

Atom C2000 SoCs can be fitted onto cards in a variety of configurations and be used to replace higher power draw Xeon silicon. For example, the first-gen SeaMicro SM1000 server made use of 256 dual-core Atom processors.

"Centerton is a good product, but it's nothing compared to what Intel is bringing to the market with Avoton," said Jason Waxman, general manager of Intel's Cloud Infrastructure group.

"Some customers have been telling us they still want the performance of Xeon, but the extra features in the SoC products, so this will be the first Xeon-based SoC," said Waxman.

The C2000 is part of Intel's Rack Scale Architecture (RSA) initiative, which is itself based on the Open Network Platform reference design. This model takes a conventional server and breaks it down into constituent components, or modules, such as power supply, storage, compute, and so on.

This modular approach is designed to reduce costs and increase flexibility by allowing modules to be shared.

Topics: Servers, Intel

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  • And this is just the first step. Airmont based ones are next

    Goodbye ARM
    Johnny Vegas
    • ...Apples and Oranges, man.

      If cost is the first thing the market is interested in, then even though the Atom wins for performance, ARM wins on cost. Unless Intel is willing to push its prices down, it's kind of hard to compete when you're competing with "it's good enough for me and it costs less."

      Also, ARM doesn't sell silicon, it sells IP, which then gets turned into silicon by other companies. Intel won't be able to compete in the spaces that ARM has slipped into (pretty much everywhere) unless it is willing to license the Atom architecture for others to build SOCs on.

      But I agree, Silvermont dominates ARM in performance while being very competitive on power use.
      Jacob VanWagoner
      • In the consumer world

        cost makes a big difference but in the corporate world quality, performance and efficiency are worth the extra cost. A lot of shops run Intel for a reason, sure there are comparable products from competitors but Intel is tried and true.
      • Jacob...

        ...there's a clear sign outside ZDNet that says "don't feed the trolls"...

        I think "Johnny Vegas" is just a Chatterbot created at Redmond Labs, design to make "awesome" remarks about Microsoft and Intel and then just follow the conversation thread with none sense... until the bot abandons the discussion and finds another post...

        I don't know if it was created by monkeys that just "developed, developed, developed"...
    • Nice satire!

      Love it! funniest thing i have read today.
    • Re: Goodbye ARM

      Given they are heading in diametrically opposite directions, now is not a good time to try to be a Microsoft fanboi and an Intel fanboi at the same time.
  • Intel has no chance

    Atoms are so dog sht slow its incredible. Opteron is where its at. Those CPU's are cheap, quick and they even have SoC versions now for HD Video! And htey are STILL CHEAP. Intel Chip prices are absolutely insane. The price of a 16 core Intel server you can have a 64 core AMD server... And you can have a 32 core vs a 8 core... There is no comparison in price or performance, they are losing on all ends.
    • Full of hyperbole

      You have no idea what you're talking about.

      No specifics, just a bag of hot air.
    • Jimster

      Yeah because Intel is just constantly losing to AMD. While AMD is raking in the dough, Intel just keeps losing money and can't seem to make any profit...Oh wait.
  • Full of hyperbole

    You have no idea what you're talking about.

    No specifics, just a bag of hot air.