Wondering what AMD's plans
are in terms of server strategy? Don't bother looking up leaks; the chip-maker is laying it all out in front of you. In what has to be one of the most unusual moves in recent memory, AMD is bucking the trend of all-out secrecy by disclosing today its server roadmap. Why? It's mostly aimed at shareholders and pundits who have doubted AMD's ability to recapture market share in the enterprise / data center markets. The company is laying out plans for "innovative" new products that address key technologies and meet the requirements of the fastest-growing data center and cloud computing workloads.
AMD's 2014 server portfolio includes APUs as well as two- and four-socket CPUs. This is on the heels of announcing the general availability of the AMD Opteron X-Series processor, code named “Kyoto
." These forthcoming AMD Opteron processors will offer up integrated CPU and GPU compute (APU); high core-count ARM servers for high-density compute in the data center; and substantial improvements in compute per-watt per-dollar and total cost of ownership.
“Our strategy is to differentiate ourselves by using our unique IP to build server processors that are particularly well matched to a target workload and thereby drive down the total cost of owning servers. This strategy unfolds across both the enterprise and data centers and includes leveraging our graphics processing capabilities and embracing both x86 and ARM instruction sets,” said Andrew Feldman, general manager of the Server Business Unit, AMD. “AMD led the world in the transition to multicore processors and 64-bit computing, and we intend to do it again with our next-generation AMD Opteron families.”
“Seattle” will be the industry’s only 64-bit ARM-based server SoC from a proven server processor supplier. “Seattle” is an 8- and then 16-core CPU based on the ARM Cortex-A57 core and is expected to run at or greater than 2 GHz. The “Seattle” processor is expected to offer 2-4X the performance of AMD’s recently announced AMD Opteron X-Series processor with significant improvement in compute-per-watt. It will deliver 128GB DRAM support, extensive offload engines for better power efficiency and reduced CPU loading, server caliber encryption, and compression and legacy networking including integrated 10GbE. It will be the first processor from AMD to integrate AMD’s advanced Freedom™ Fabric for dense compute systems directly onto the chip. AMD plans to sample “Seattle” in the first quarter of 2014 with production in the second half of the year.
“Berlin” is an x86-based processor that will be available both as a CPU and APU. The processor boasts four next-generation “Steamroller” cores and will offer almost 8X the gigaflops per-watt compared to current AMD Opteron™ 6386SE processor. It will be the first server APU built on AMD’s revolutionary Heterogeneous System Architecture (HSA), which enables uniform memory access for the CPU and GPU and makes programming as easy as C++. “Berlin” will offer extraordinary compute per-watt that enables massive rack density. It is expected to be available in the first half of 2014.
“Warsaw” is an enterprise server CPU optimized to deliver unparalleled performance and total cost of ownership for two- and four-socket servers. Designed for enterprise workloads, it will offer improved performance-per-watt, which drives down the cost of owning a “Warsaw”-based server while enabling seamless migration from the AMD Opteron 6300 Series family. It is a fully compatible socket with identical software certifications, making it ideal for the AMD Open 3.0 Server – the industry’s most cost effective Open Compute platform. It is expected to be available in the first quarter of 2014.