IBM releases new PowerLinux server

IBM continues to bet on Linux and open-source databases with its new PowerLinux 7R4 server.
Written by Steven Vaughan-Nichols, Senior Contributing Editor

Last year, IBM started investing more in Linux on its Power line of servers and now it's doubling down on that bet with its new PowerLinux 7R4 server.

Say hello to IBM's newest Power Linux server, the 7R4. (Credit: IBM)

This new Power server, which IBM advertises as a "high-performance/high-end" machine, is the next step up in its Power Systems PowerLinux line. It comes with four sockets and 32 CPU cores.

The PowerLinux 7R4 server is built on the same Power Systems platform running IBM's famous Watson cognitive computing solution and Jeopardy champion.

"As the Linux operating system and open source applications continue to mature, more clients are choosing IBM’s higher value hardware systems designed to handle mission critical and complex cloud and big data workloads in an open environment," said Doug Balog, General Manager for IBM Power Systems in a statement. "Responding to this need, we are aggressively continuing investments in our open Power Systems ecosystem -- including new products, applications and partnerships -- that support today's emerging Linux workloads.”

Like the rest of PowerLinux server line, the 7R4 runs with either Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) or SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES). If you'd rather use AIX Unix and/or IBM i operating system you can use IBM's PowerVM virtualization tools to partition any Power Systems server into separate virtual machines with some running Linux-based applications while others running AIX or IBM i.

IBM is adding IBM Cognos Business Intelligence and EnterpriseDB database software. According to IBM, "In addition to IBM DB2 database software for Linux, which offers an average 98 percent compatibility with Oracle Database applications, IBM announced that EnterpriseDB's enterprise-level PostgreSQL-based database solution is now available on all Power Systems servers running Linux."

Ed Boyajian, EnterpriseDB's President and CEO, claimed in a statement that "Switching databases has traditionally been costly and risky due to limited application compatibility and lack of comprehensive migration tools and resources. EnterpriseDB's Postgres Plus Advanced Server and IBM Power Systems solve this problem by providing extensive Oracle compatibility functionality, migration tools and expertise that deliver significant cost savings while allowing many Oracle based applications to run virtually unchanged.”

Oracle would, I'm sure, beg to differ. With this move, IBM seems to be distancing itself ever further from Oracle. 

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