Intel Announces New Xeon 4 Socket CPU (E7); Dell, HP and IBM Slated to Refresh Blades

UPDATED 11:30 a.m. EST (4/6/11) – Intel announced today the next version of their 4 socket chipset, known as “E7”.  Previously known with the codename of Westmere EX, the newly released Xeon 7600 will be rebranded as the Intel Xeon E7Following suit with the Intel “tick-tock” strategy, this refresh falls under the “tick” with a new core design and a smaller die at 32 nm.  The E7 CPU family increases the core capacity to 10 cores (20 with Intel’s Hyper-Threading feature) and has up to 30MB of last level cache that is sharable across all cores.  The integrated memory controller now offers 4 scalable Memory Interconnects with speeds up to 6.4 GT/s and there are now 4 full-width Intel QuickPath Interconnects linking the 4 CPUs together.  The Intel Xeon E7 will also provide support for 32GB DIMMs, although not every manufacturer will offer 32GB on their blade servers.

Here’s the complete Intel Xeon E7 Product Family Offering:

Intel Processor E7 Product Family

  As expected, Dell, HP and IBM all announced a refresh of their blade servers.  Here’s what has been announced to be refreshed:

Dell – announced a refresh in the PowerEdge M910 today at 10 a.m Pacific.  Click here for my blog post about this announcement.

HP – refreshed their BL620c G7 and BL680c G7 with new speeds using the Intel Xeon E7.  This refresh will not be the Gen 8 models – expect that to come with the release of the next generation Intel 2 socket offering (Sandy Bridge).   The BL680cG7 is a double-wide server that offers 64 DIMM slots for a total of 2TB of RAM (along with 40 cores of CPUs across 4 CPUs.) 

You can find the QuickSpecs on the BL680c G7 with the refreshed CPU on HP’s website at http://h18004.www1.hp.com/products/quickspecs/13742_na/13742_na.html.    The QuickSpecs on the BL620c G7can be found here: http://h18004.www1.hp.com/products/quickspecs/13747_na/13747_na.HTML

UPDATED 4/6/2011 (11:30 a.m. EST)
IBM – 
  officially announced today, April 6, 2011, a refresh to their HX5 blade server using the Intel Xeon E7-4800 and E7-4800 CPUs.  The HX5 from IBM can be combined with a 2nd HX5 to create a 4 socket, 40 core blade server with 32 DIMM slotsAt launch, the models that will be offered (subject to change without notice) will be E7-4870; E7-8867L; E7-4830; E7-8837; E7-4807.  General Availability is slated for 5/27/2011.  For more information on the IBM HX5, please visit my previous post here.  An important note about my previous post.  It was written last March, when the product was announced, so if you want a current update on the IBM HX5, including details on the newly announced CPU refresh, check out IBM’s Redbook page at http://www.redbooks.ibm.com/abstracts/tips0824.html?Open. 

CISCO - announced a refresh.  Check out my blog post with coverage on this refresh here.