Today’s a busy day for Intel Xeon processors.
Intel this morning said its Xeon E-2100 of processors are now shipping. These CPUs are designed for the entry-level servers used by small and medium businesses (SMBs) and cloud service providers (CSPs).
Intel also pre-announced Cascade Lake, a family of higher-end Xeon Scalable processors designed for high-performance computing (HPC), artificial intelligence (AI) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) workloads.
Lisa Spelman, Intel’s GM of Xeon products and data-center marketing, said in a statement that the dual introduction “once again demonstrates our commitment to delivering performance-optimized solutions to a wide range of customers.”
Here are the high points:
Intel’s new Xeon E-2100 processor server platform, originally announced this past summer, aims to give SMBs a straightforward path for upgrading to enterprise-class, entry-level servers with features and reliability previously unavailable on a client product — and at an affordable price.
Intel says the new processors offer speeds of up to 4.7GHz with Intel Turbo Boost Tech 2.0. That, the company adds, marks a 1.48X performance gain on a 4-year refresh, and a 1.39X performance gain on the previous generation.
The Xeon E-2100s do that with hardware specs that include up to 6 cores and 12 threads; up to 128GB of DDR memory; and up to 40 lanes of PCI Express 3.0 for graphics, storage and network expansion.
Security is improved, too, with Intel Software Guard Extensions (SGX) for the data center. This protects sensitive data in runtime memory. Intel SGX on the Intel Xeon E- processor family delivers hardware-based security and manageability features to further secure customer data and applications.
As this table shows (courtesy of Intel), prices for the new processors range from $193 to $450, depending on features:
The Intel Xeon E-2100 processors are available now from Intel and distributors. Also, the new processors will be used in servers from Intel partners including Asus, Dell, HPE and Lenovo.
This new class of Intel Xeon Scalable processors is designed for today’s most demanding workloads, including HPC, AI and IaaS. Intel is essentially pre-annoucing the processor family, as general availability isn’t planned until sometime in the first half of next year.
That said, Intel is offering some tech specs in advance of the Supercomputing Conference being held next week in Dallas.
Intel says Cascade Lake will use a multi-chip package that delivers up to 48 cores per CPU and up to 12 DDR memory modules per socket. Cascade Lake processors will also support Intel’s Optane DC Persistent Memory, which went into beta release last week.
As part of the announcement, Intel released preliminary performance estimates for Cascade Lake:
> Linpack: up to 1.21X vs. Intel Xeon Scalable 8180 processor, and up to 3.4X vs. AMD’s EPYC 7601.
> Stream Triad: up to 1.83X vs. Intel Scalable 8180 processor, and up to 1.3X vs. AMD’s EPYC 7601.
> AI/Deep Learning Inference: up to 17X images-per-second vs. Intel Xeon Platinum processor at launch.
Cascade Lake is probably more processor than your SMBs want or need. But the new Xeon E-2100? That could be the ticket.