has been promising it for months
, and now the company has officially announced the Intel Atom
. The ultra low power chip is designed for the datacenter and provides a high-density solution designed to lower TCO and improve scalability.
The 64-bit, dual-core (four total threads with Hyper-Threading technology) Atom S1200 underpins the third generation of Intel’s commercial microservers and feature a mere 6W TDP that allows a density of over 1,000 nodes per rack. The chip also includes ECC and supports Intel Virtualization technology, and per Intel’s overall datacenter strategy, it leverages all of the existing software platforms in the datacenter.
The Atom S1200 is designed to fill a niche in Intel’s datacenter processor lineup, because as datacenter workloads become increasingly diversified, milking the best performance per watt out of a processor becomes a challenge. Intel saw a need for a processor that can handle many simultaneous lightweight workloads, such as dedicated web hosting for sites that individually have minimal requirements, basic L2 switching, and low-end storage needs and developed the S1200 in response.
As an example of an instance wherein the new Atom chip would be better than, say, Intel’s Xeon products, Intel offered the following: On the right side of the below graphic, the Atom enables extreme density and supports the maximum numbers of web servers possible, each of which needs very few transactions processed. On the left, the Xeon rack offers strong density but delivers better performance in terms of transactions per minute for fewer websites that each have greater processing demands.
HP, an Intel partner that is deploying the Atom S1200 in its Gemini servers
, offered up this graphic that shows that balance in a more succinct way:
Intel did not divulge pricing, but regardless, this is an impressive innovation and one that will contribute to more efficient datacenters and provide direct competition for AMD's SeaMicro