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Intel’s new mission-critical 24-core chips target analytics workloads

Mon 6 Jun 2016

Intel Xeon E7 v4

U.S. chip giant Intel has debuted a new family of processors, dubbed Xeon E7 v4, which have been developed to tackle the most complex, mission-critical workloads.

While designed with virtual machines, databases and enterprise applications in mind, Intel is specifically targeting its new data centre chips at analytics, lauding the generation’s performance and reliability when working through large datasets.

The chips are available now in systems from HPE, Dell, SGI, Lenovo and Fujitsu; the E7-8800 for eight-socket servers, and the E7-4800 v4 for four-socket servers.

Previously named Broadwell-EX, Intel claims that the new collection beats the former chips with a significant boost in performance, an increase in maximum core number (from 18 to 24), and double the maximum supported memory (up to 24TB per system.)

This memory capacity enables Xeon E7-based systems to address growing industry demand for in-memory databases and Big Data analytics. According to Intel [PDF], the chips achieve a doubling in performance for the processing of analytic queries, when measured against the TPC-H benchmark.

Screen Shot 2016-06-06 at 12.28.13Nidhi Chappell, product line manager at Intel’s Data Centre Group, explained the focus on analytics: “It is fair to say that analytics is pretty ubiquitous. There has a been a lot of research that has shown that companies that use advanced analytics tend to have more data-driven decisions, are able to make better insights and generally enjoy better competitive advantages.”

Intel argued further that the new chip set also gains performance over IBM’s Power8 [PDF] processors – its main competition in the data centre market. It claims that the E7-8890 v4 has 1.4x the performance of the Power8, and that it cuts the operational costs in half for eight-socket systems, and achieves as much as 10 times the performance per dollar.

As with previous versions, the Xeon E7 chips can be integrated with node controller hardware in order to scale the technology from eight sockets to 64 sockets.


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