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Intel Plans Low Power Xeon Processors for Micro-Servers This Quarter, Centerton in 2H

btarunr

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#1
Intel is planning to launch a line of low-power Xeon processors in Q2-2012, which will be the company's first Xeon processors built on the 22 nm fab process, with 3D transistors. It is quite likely that these chips are built in the LGA1155 package, however Intel is only releasing low-power variants, which ensures performance-segment Xeon E3-1200 family isn't disturbed, and more importantly, it doesn't have to pull out the best bins of its 22 nm Ivy Bridge silicon just yet (for use in higher clock-speed Xeon parts).

Intel has another emerging problem. With the advent of "micro-servers" (low power independent servers in high-density data-centers, which provide better cost-performance and manageability than virtual servers), ARM processor architecture is making inroads to the enterprise computing market. Intel's answer to that is refining the same silicon that goes into making low-power Atom processors, and making it enterprise-grade. This part is codenamed "Centerton", and Intel expects an entire micro-server platform based on these chips to be out in the second half of 2012.



Source: C|Net
 
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#2
Centerton is only interesting if they can get performance > Atom. Atom is fine for a NAS... but run any service on it and it limps like a Pentium 3. (Which, essentially, it is)
 
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#3
Centerton is only interesting if they can get performance > Atom. Atom is fine for a NAS... but run any service on it and it limps like a Pentium 3. (Which, essentially, it is)
Performance increase is probably marginal. If there is any, looks like it'll come from the improved memory controller which now supports DDR3-1333, up from DDR2/DDR3-800. Also added ECC and LV support.

Though for where Intel would like these to go, it's big-ish news. Couple % faster per chip, and you can now fit ~800 (a guess) in the same space as 500 did before.