The New Cloud Enabler – Tilera’s TILE Gx 3000 Processor

The New Cloud Enabler – Tilera’s TILE Gx 3000 Processor

For cloud computing to succeed, and make those impressive numbers surveys throw up at regular intervals (See: Microsoft Study Says 40% of SMBs to Go on Cloud within 3 Years and Where Is Cloud Computing Going? Up, Up And Away! ), a change in people’s mindsets is definitely required. However, mere belief in not enough; it has to be backed up with the proper equipment.

Now, chipmaker Tilera believes it has provided a revolutionary product that is an integral part of this equipment, a server processor that it’s claiming as the “ultimate” cloud computing processor. The company, based out of Silicon Valley and tracing its roots to MIT alumnus and chief technology officer (CTO) Anant Agarwal’s work, is gearing up to pose a credible challenge to the Big Boys in processor technology, Intel and AMD.

Tilera claims that it’s new TILE-Gx 3000 processor family can provide marked improvements over Intel’s Sandy Bridge family due to its innovative architecture, specifically designed for low-latency, high-throughput applications that can be optimally used in today’s high-density cloud-based data centers. In this approach, Tilera’s design is a marked departure from the x86 architecture that Sandy Bridge processors like Intel’s Xeon are based on.

Consequently, as Ihab Bishara, Director of Server Solutions at Tilera explained, even as Intel and AMD continued to add more cores to their processors, they were still limited by adhering to the old architecture; one that he claimed was designed for general purpose applications. “An x86 is an x86, whether it’s Atom cores, Pentium cores – the overhead that you’re carrying is the same,” he said.

This, Bishara claimed, allowed the TILE-Gx 3000 chips to offer 10 times the performance-per-watt capabilities of Xeon chips, greater reduction of total system power and footprint, and a 50% reduction in total cost of ownership for customers. He expressed the belief that this would make it an obvious choice for companies looking to cut down of expenses, even making them amenable to embrace new technology against the tried-and-tested x86-based products. He claimed that this development is the result of “in-depth discussions with the world’s “largest cloud-computing companies.

If you look at the top-tier websites, they have huge data centers, and what they get from Intel and AMD is incremental improvements,” said Bishara. “The era of 20-30 % incremental gains is over. The Gx-3000 series provides the order of magnitude improvements the industry is looking for.”

The TILE-Gx-3000 series includes three processors with the following specifications:

Part
Number
Core
Count
Cache DDR3 PCIe 2.0 Controllers Ethernet Ports Power Availability
Gx3036 36 12 MB Dual channels 1 x8 port
1 x4 port
2 x 1 Gb
2 x 10 Gb
20 W Q3 2011
Gx3064 64 20 MB Quad channels 2 x8 port
1 x4 port
2 x 1 Gb
2 x 10 Gb
35 W Q1 2012
Gx3100 100 32M B Quad channels 2 x8 port
1 x4 port
2 x 1 Gb
2 x 10 Gb
48 W Q1 2012

 

If Tilera’s products can deliver what they promise, Intel and AMD will definitely have a fight on their hands. Although a lot of companies would continue to remain loyal to proven technology, once new technology starts delivering tangible benefits, en masse switching is a distinct possibility. This is especially true with the development of more and more parallel applications that can make optimum use of multi-core technology.

By Sourya Biswas

 

sourya

Sourya Biswas is a former risk analyst who has worked with several financial organizations of international repute, besides being a freelance journalist with several articles published online. After 6 years of work, he has decided to pursue further studies at the University of Notre Dame, where he has completed his MBA. He holds a Bachelors in Engineering from the Indian Institute of Information Technology. He is also a member of high-IQ organizations Mensa and Triple Nine Society and has been a prolific writer to CloudTweaks over the years... http://www.cloudtweaks.com/author/sourya/

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