Monday, October 12th 2015

Qualcomm Announces its First Socketed Enterprise CPU

Qualcomm, which holds a ton of ARM SoC patents, and put them to good use with its Snapdragon line of SoCs for smartphones, tablets, and convertible notebooks, is foraying into enterprise computing market. The company is ready with its first prototype of a 24-core high-performance CPU based on the 64-bit ARM machine architecture. ARM-based processors are picking up momentum in the server and micro-server markets owning to their low cost, low cooling requirements, and high energy-efficiency; and Qualcomm wants a slice of that pie. Most enterprise Linux and FreeBSD distributors have versions of their server operating systems for the 64-bit ARM architecture, as do most popular server software providers.

The prototype 24-core CPU is socketed, and ships in a large land-grid array (LGA) package, much like Intel's Xeon chips. The first production chips will have a lot more than 24 CPU cores, said Qualcomm senior vice president Anand Chandrasekhar. As a proof of concept, Qualcomm assembled three server blades using these chips, which were running Linux with a KVM hypervisor, streaming HD video to a PC using a LAMP stack (Linux + Apache + MySQL + PHP) built with OpenStack. Qualcomm's target consumers are big Internet companies like Google and Facebook, which purchase hundreds of thousands of CPUs each year to cope with growing user- and content-traffic.
Source: PC World
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37 Comments on Qualcomm Announces its First Socketed Enterprise CPU

#1
vega22
intel just shit bricks.
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#2
Uplink10
Microsoft is never going to be successful in other markets (excluding Xbox) except x86 because its products are not open source, this here shows the benefit of free (as in freedom) software and of course the ASIC as opposed to virtualization, but ASIC has limited use compared to x86 with virtualization and it might be hard to repurpose ASIC.
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#3
MxPhenom 216
Corsair Fanboy
Uplink10
Microsoft is never going to be successful in other markets (excluding Xbox) except x86 because its products are not open source, this here shows the benefit of free (as in freedom) software and of course the ASIC as opposed to virtualization, but ASIC has limited use compared to x86 with virtualization and it might be hard to repurpose ASIC.
What the hell does this news post have to do with Microsoft at all? Not once does the OP mention Microsoft.
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#4
Nordic
I want a quad cpu setup for of these for crunching.
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#5
dj-electric
Heyyyy qualcomm.
Sup. Uhm... listen. If you could kinda make an X86 CPU with like, 8 fast cores and not charge 999$ for it, that'd be cool and stuff.

Just sayin, if ur into it.
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#6
Static~Charge
Uplink10
Microsoft is never going to be successful in other markets (excluding Xbox) except x86 because its products are not open source, this here shows the benefit of free (as in freedom) software and of course the ASIC as opposed to virtualization, but ASIC has limited use compared to x86 with virtualization and it might be hard to repurpose ASIC.
Riiiight, because we all know that it's impossible to port closed-source code to a different architecture, especially when your company has a crapload of money and thousands of programmers at its disposal.... :slap:
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#7
Ferrum Master
Welcome welcome! I am just happy, the more the better... at last some race.
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#8
TheinsanegamerN
Dj-ElectriC
Heyyyy qualcomm.
Sup. Uhm... listen. If you could kinda make an X86 CPU with like, 8 fast cores and not charge 999$ for it, that'd be cool and stuff.

Just sayin, if ur into it.
You'd have to convince intel to license out x86 to them, and AMD to license out AMD64 to them. Hell will freeze over before that happens.

It sucks that desktop OSes are stuck on x86 for now. I'd like to see ARM compete in the 25-95 watt space, and put x86 out to pasture. Barring something like rosetta though, that seems equally unlikely, albeit more possible if qualcomm is successful with this.
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#9
silentbogo
TheinsanegamerN
You'd have to convince intel to license out x86 to them, and AMD to license out AMD64 to them. Hell will freeze over before that happens.

It sucks that desktop OSes are stuck on x86 for now. I'd like to see ARM compete in the 25-95 watt space, and put x86 out to pasture. Barring something like rosetta though, that seems equally unlikely, albeit more possible if qualcomm is successful with this.
They are just not shoved in your face, like x86-64 stuff. There are tons of ARM ports of Ubuntu, Debian, Arch, Fedora and others that run very well. Been using dual-core Cubietruck with Debian for almost 2 years now. Just had to reinstall it a few times when GPU acceleration for Mali MP400 was finally worked out. Also have a RaspberryPi2, which is a bit faster, but I use it as a headless PMA/FTP server.
Also there are many ARM-powered chromebooks. HP has some nice Tegra TK1 Chromebooks, which I always wanted to try with Ubuntu.
NVidia Tegra X1 will be even more bad-ass: 8-core 64-bit ARM with a Maxwell GPU(256 SPUs). Perfect office PC or 4K media center.
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#10
lanceknightnight
I saw posts about freedom in this free realm of ARM. But did you read the article. They leveraged their patents. This is to say they created a gated area of development in the free architecture. This is the point of the message. It is an advert saying Qualcomm is creating a new chip for server settings that uses this free tech people developed for them for free and it cannot be copied due to patents. This is investor bait. This is not about the freedom of ARM. It is the power of Qualcomm to monetize ARM and keep out competition through a gated development.
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#11
tabascosauz
lanceknightnight
I saw posts about freedom in this free realm of ARM. But did you read the article. They leveraged their patents. This is to say they created a gated area of development in the free architecture. This is the point of the message. It is an advert saying Qualcomm is creating a new chip for server settings that uses this free tech people developed for them for free and it cannot be copied due to patents. This is investor bate. This is not about the freedom of ARM. It is the power of Qualcomm to monetize ARM and keep out competition through a gated development.
This is a pretty important point. Remember Seattle from AMD? It comprised 8 x Cortex-A57s, and even though Seattle and this 24-core are both going to be ARMv8, Qualcomm's intention is hardly the same as AMD's. Qualcomm never leverages original ARM core designs unless it has no other choice and has to round out its product stack. Its main focus is on taking ARMv7 and ARMv8 and incorporating aspects of those into its Krait and Kryo cores. That's not open in any way.

Yes, Seattle was "based on an ARM design" and the cores turned out to be nothing more than an ARM design. Knowing Qualcomm, however, this CPU is not going to be quite the same deal.
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#12
HumanSmoke
marsey99
intel just shit bricks.
Why? ARM based enterprise servers have been around for a while. Cavium's ThunderX is a 48-core and has been selling via OEM's for most of the year

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#13
Uplink10
MxPhenom 216
What the hell does this news post have to do with Microsoft at all? Not once does the OP mention Microsoft.
It shows that open source software gets the first bite and I hope even the last one.

Static~Charge
Riiiight, because we all know that it's impossible to port closed-source code to a different architecture, especially when your company has a crapload of money and thousands of programmers at its disposal.... :slap:
That is what I thought about bugs in Windows 7/8.1, "they have enough money to hire a lot of programmers and resolve all of them" but it does not look like they will hire more than they had for years/more they normally have..
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#14
natr0n
The cpu game has now changed.
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#15
alucasa
HumanSmoke
Why? ARM based enterprise servers have been around for a while. Cavium's ThunderX is a 48-core and has been selling via OEM's for most of the year


Hardware porn right there.
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#16
cadaveca
My name is Dave
HumanSmoke
Why? ARM based enterprise servers have been around for a while. Cavium's ThunderX is a 48-core and has been selling via OEM's for most of the year
Not only that, Google has been building custom ARM-based servers for years. Facebook and businesses that simply deal with data shuffling, rather than processing, will be the only markets for this. Which means just about any business. :P
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#17
HumanSmoke
cadaveca
Not only that, Google has been building custom ARM-based servers for years. Facebook and businesses that simply deal with data shuffling, rather than processing, will be the only markets for this. Which means just about any business. :p
Pretty much. ThunderX is already gaining good traction thanks to OEM's, and companies like E4 (who also utilize X-Gene) and possibly Cray. Applied Micro have apparently already shipped 1300+ X-Gene dev kits, and have a sizable presence in 64-bit ARM server (HP's Moonshot Proliant M400 is X-Gene powered). Broadcom's Vulcan and this entry from Qualcomm should make for pretty cutthroat competition. It will be interesting to see how much ARM eats into Intel's business - which has produced $3.5bn+ in revenue and $1.5bn+ a quarter in profit every quarter for the last 2 or so years.
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#18
NC37
Heh, go back to 2005. We had a desktop OS running on RISC in the PowerPC Macs. Great machines that Apple had been pushing for years. But IBM dropped the ball, Jobs made stupid promises, and now we've got nothing but x86 machines and the worst quality Macs in history.

If you want more non x86 computing it's going to take more than a half assed effort from both consumers and the industry. Course on the plus side with Intel's stagnation comes hope of ARM continuing to close the gap.
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#19
MIRTAZAPINE
NC37
Heh, go back to 2005. We had a desktop OS running on RISC in the PowerPC Macs. Great machines that Apple had been pushing for years. But IBM dropped the ball, Jobs made stupid promises, and now we've got nothing but x86 machines and the worst quality Macs in history.

If you want more non x86 computing it's going to take more than a half assed effort from both consumers and the industry. Course on the plus side with Intel's stagnation comes hope of ARM continuing to close the gap.
PowerPC Cpu was very much ahead of its time when it was release. I think powerpc is still use in server application but it is not as popular. I really wonder how things would go if Apple had stick to powerpc and powerpc was updated then. I guess now arm is taking up from where powerpc left off. The problem I can see with arm taking off is the software side of things there are just too many x86 dependent programs around. How well arm succeed is the software side of things, which I hope would happen. Arm cpu have a massive advantage in cost vs an x86 cpu.
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#20
Steevo
PowerPC had its up and down chips too, there are a whole series of Power5 or 6 chips that were like the P4, and they are usually a couple processes behind what X86 is, so lets not wear rose colored glasses when we remember
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#21
gaximodo
Steevo
PowerPC had its up and down chips too, there are a whole series of Power5 or 6 chips that were like the P4, and they are usually a couple processes behind what X86 is, so lets not wear rose colored glasses when we remember
And the reason why PowerPC was dumped was simply because they couldn't keep up with Intel's offering at the time and their own promises.
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#22
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
Is this going to make Intel turn Xeon Phi into a general processor? Xeon Phi pretty much is what these ARM processors are...but 72 cores...


HumanSmoke
It will be interesting to see how much ARM eats into Intel's business - which has produced $3.5bn+ in revenue and $1.5bn+ a quarter in profit every quarter for the last 2 or so years.
Even without ARM becoming a threat, Intel's profits were going to start falling off because of the increase in costs to research 10nm. It'll probably be even worse going to 6-7 nm. IMO, it's a good thing Intel has built up a nest egg because if Intel becomes really uncertain about the possibility/cost of shrinking further, tech stocks across the globe will take a dive.
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#23
Frick
Fishfaced Nincompoop
So... They'll be buying AMD's CPU stuff then and Radeon gets spun off and resurrected as ATi?
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#24
Musaab
In the second pic Qualcomm senior vice president Anand Chandrasekhar was saying "Look we have made a big mistake, big enough to fill my hand (Notice Pic 1) and we didn't know where to throw it so we made a blue box, we didn't know there were companies like Oracle and IBM doing CPUs for servers beside the X86", It is good that Qualcomm is trying to expand their CPU business but servers are processing hungry, small servers for small web sites and big storage NAS ( Not datacenters) maybe even cloud servers is already filled with ARM and X86 options and price getting lower every day, for big supercomputers and data centers I don't think that arm can do anything because Oracle and IBM are fighting X86 for long time. Nvidia Knew that they can't fight the big three so their processing unit doesn't replace the CPU and the platform but work with it that what make Tesla survive else way Tesla wouldn't have any chance.
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#25
HumanSmoke
Musaab
for big supercomputers and data centers I don't think that arm can do anything because Oracle and IBM are fighting X86 for long time.
Just needs to gain traction. ARM supercomputing has been a thing for only a few years. Now that 64-bit ARM is available, you will see more implementations along the lines of BSC's Mont-Blanc
Musaab
Nvidia Knew that they can't fight the big three so their processing unit doesn't replace the CPU and the platform but work with it that what make Tesla survive else way Tesla wouldn't have any chance.
Of course. Nvidia's own roadmap targets ARM+Tesla co-processor. That is why the company worked to integrate their hardware+CUDA with x86, and the RISC based OpenPOWER and ARM. When you are a peripheral player, you evolve or become irrelevant.
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