Enterprise, Workstation, Data Center, Cloud, Networking, Software News And Reviews

In-depth product reviews and news of enterprise, workstation, networking, cloud, SMB, data center and software products and services.

All we seem to hear about these days is how the PC market is off its mark, but rather than pout and pound sand over the situation, Intel appears to have flexed a bit of manufacturing and technology muscle to help weather the storm. Not only that, Intel surpassed analysts' expectations today by reporting second-quarter earnings of 55 cents per share on revenue of $13.2 billion. By quarter's end, Intel pocketed a profit of $2.7 billion, posting gains in their IOT (Internet of Things) and Data Center businesses. "Second-quarter results demonstrate the transformation of our business as growth in data center, memory and IoT accounted for more than 70 percent of our operating profit and helped offset... Read more...
Intel's aiming to bring big core performance and intelligence in a microserver form factor with its new Xeon D family of processors, the company's first ever Xeon-based System-on-Chip (SoC). That sound you hear may be ARM's pulse skipping a beat, as Intel jams a mighty intimidating wrench into the rival chip maker's plans to dominate the microserver market. The Xeon D line is built on Intel's 14nm process technology and combines the performance and intelligence of its regular Xeon chips with the size and power savings of an SoC. According to Intel, Xeon D delivers up to 3.4x faster performance node and up to 1.7x better performance per watt compared to the company's Atom C2750, which is part... Read more...
Intel promises a lot with its just-announced fifth-gen Core vPro processors, but if there's one overarching theme, it's that the company wants you to be wireless -- even if you need to take advantage of a big screen. Three major focuses for Intel with this launch include general PC design, wireless displays, and wireless docking. On the design front, Intel says that with these new vPro processors, vendors will be able to create products that are up to three times thinner and 50% lighter over previous generations. That's a bold claim, and an exciting one for mobile warriors. Intel's Fifth-gen Core vPro Processor A great example of where the wireless capabilities come in can be seen in... Read more...
As iOS 8 rolls out across Apple's devices, the bug reports -- the inevitable, sometimes hilarious, and sometimes maddening bug reports -- have begun to surface as well. iPhone and iPad users are complaining of slow keyboards, iMessage problems, glitches, app crashes, content management issues, missing content, sticky notifications, and a host of other problems. The good news, I suppose, is that no one has uncovered any truly game-ending bugs yet. That's not to say people haven't suffered crashes; any time you update a device to a new operating system someone somewhere is going to have a failure -- but there are no widespread reports of people bricking devices or destroying them wholesale. That... Read more...
Earlier this year we detailed the launch of new 15-core Ivy Bridge-based server processors from Intel, as part of the Xeon E7 refresh cycle. Today, Intel is pushing the Xeon E5 family forward -- except in this case, the new Xeon E5 v3 chips are leaping to higher core counts, the more advanced Haswell-EP architecture, and DDR4. The result? The highest-performing Intel server we've seen to date. First, the chips and platform: Collectively, this is a huge leap forward for the entire Xeon E5 series. The Xeon E5 v2 chips, which were based on Ivy Bridge, topped out at 12 cores per socket. The new Xeon E5 v3 cores, in contrast, are going to push as high as 18 cores per socket -- a 50% improvement. The... Read more...
For months, there have been rumors circulating of a new Intel 15-core CPU, with a particular focus on Big Data analytics, multi-socket systems, and the enterprise market. Well, this past January, we took a trip to Intel's SAP research lab to see the new processors and the rather substantial update coming down the pipe. Unlike Intel's mainstream and basic server products, the truly Big Iron hardware updates on a significantly slower cadence. Haswell chips launched eight months ago for desktop and the Xeon E5 v2 family, based on Ivy Bridge, has been available for months -- but the Xeon E7 processors Intel is replacing today are still based on the old Westmere core, which first debuted in consumer... Read more...
Intel is updating its line of enterprise-class solid state storage offerings today, with a new more cost-effective drive that targets datacenter and cloud-computing applications. The Intel SSD DC S3500 as it is known, is similar in a number of ways to the SSD DC S3700 we evaluated a few months back. The new drives, however, are built around more affordable NAND flash memory than the previously released DC S3700-series drives. Regardless, data integrity and consistent performance remain key differentiators for Intel’s datacenter-targeted “DC”-branded drives, but the SSD DC S3500 will do so at much more mainstream price points than the higher-end DC S3700-series drives. We’ve... Read more...
Intel set the solid state storage market ablaze when it released the X25-M a few years back. Up until that point, solid state drives had steadily been improving in performance, but there was no real dominant player in the space. When the X25-M arrived though, with its proprietary controller, firmware, and NAND, it blew the doors of the competition and remained “the” drive for enthusiasts to own for quite some time. The X25-M was relatively pricey, but its performance was unrivaled. However, Intel eventually moved away from its proprietary controller technology. The second gen X25-M used the same Intel-built controller as the original drive, but subsequent SATA 6Gbps offerings... Read more...
Last month, Intel brought us out to the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) in Austin to brief us on their latest and greatest foray into high-performance computing (HPC) and exascale level processing performance. Parallel Computing and the Road to Exascale There are mountains of problems that need to be solved and a myriad of insight to be gained, in fields from the sciences to national security, that require HPC and highly parallel processing to most effectively and efficiently solve. Parallel processing is what the HPC space is all about, and when large amounts of data can be processed and complex problems solved, it can help researchers move from the concept phase to the... Read more...
Intel's next-generation CPU, codenamed Haswell, was the major star of IDF. One aspect of the chip we haven't talked about at length, however, is its emphasis on reduced power consumption. When Intel announced that its Ivy Bridge mobile products would target 17W for mainstream systems, it made headlines. Pushing Haswell down to 10W is an even greater achievement, but hitting these targets requires a great deal of collaboration and cooperation. Intel's Dadi Perlmutter, Executive Vice President, Architecture Group with Xeon Phi and Atom CPUs For most of the past 40 years, power consumption was treated as an afterthought at virtually every level. Unless you were building specialized hardware for... Read more...
At the International Supercomputing Conference today, Intel announced that Knights corner, the company's first commercial Many Integrated Core (MIC) product will ship commercially in 2012. The Descendent of the processor formerly known as Larrabee also gets a new brand name -- Xeon Phi. The idea behind Intel's new push is that the highly efficient Xeon E5 architecture (eight-core Sandy Bridge on 32nm) fuels the basic x86 cluster, while the Many Integrated Core CPUs that grew out of the failed Larrabee GPU offer unparalleled performance scaling and break new ground. The challenges Intel is trying to surmount are considerable. We've successfully pushed from teraflops to petaflops,... Read more...
Intel has historically stuck with SATA-based solid state storage solutions, but today the company is taking a different approach with its first PCI-Express solid state storage device. Like the SSD 710 family of products, the newly announced Intel SSD 910 is based on 25nm MLC NAND Flash. The two product families share a number of other low level features as well, but should offer very different performance levels. With the 710 Series, Intel focused on reliability and enterprise-level endurance and less on speed; the 910 PCI-Express SSD promises to deliver on both fronts. The Intel SSD 910 is a triple-layer stack of NAND chips that fits into a single PCI-Express slot. The drive will be... Read more...
Intel announced its new E-series of Xeon processors today, claiming that the new processors will deliver nearly unparalleled advances in CPU performance and power efficiency. It's been just over a year since Santa Clara released its Nehalem-based octal-core Beckton processors. Whereas Beckton was focused entirely on performance and architectural efficiency, these new Xeons are more balanced. The new chips boost the core count to ten (up to 20 threads with HT enabled) and will be offered at a wide range of TDPs. Beckton Evolved: Now with two more cores and twice the RAM "Intel has been changing the economics for mission-critical computing server deployments for more than a decade, and today... Read more...
What do you do when you're the fastest thing around?  You just keep on WINNING. It's as if there was tiger blood coursing through your veins. You're so good, you're bi-winning.  Heck, with a six core processor at your disposal, you'd be hexa-winning.  Ol' Charlie needs one of these things to go with his rock-star life style.  As desktop processors go, Intel's Core i7 900 series line-up is pretty much the Charlie of the computing world.  Tiger blood and all, though people might ask what kind of drug you were on and the response would have to be "Core i" of course. It's a little like crack only it doesn't make you lose your voice.  Though you might want to occasionally... Read more...
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