HP first started talking about its Gen8 server platform in February of this year as being all about new innovation in both server power and control. Until this week, however, those levels of power and control were limited to server systems that only supported two sockets.
HP is now rolling out its first four-socket Gen8 servers, with the promise that they will help to accelerate the move of more enterprise computing workloads to virtualization. The new systems include the HP ProLiant BL660c blade and the DL560 rack mounted server.
"This is a new set of dense four-socket offerings that are really a key building block for customers that want pervasive virtualization across their IT infrastructure," John Gromala, Director of Product Marketing, Industry Standard Servers and Software at HP, told ServerWatch.
According to Gromala, there are lots of HP customers that have moved to virtualized IT on two-socket socket systems. Those customers however have also still had four-socket system servers in place for high-end computing for business procession and databases.
In contrast to four-socket systems, two-socket systems are limited wth less I/O and memory capabilities. Previous HP four-socket systems were not ideal for pervasive virtualization as they used up too much space and power.
The new four-socket systems are 2U-sized servers, enabling a better use of space for the performance they offer. The ProLiant DL560 has 48 DIMM slots and offers a maximum memory capacity of 1.5 TB. The BL660c provides 32 DIMM slots and has a maximum memory capacity of 1.0 TB.
Both of the four-socket systems leverage Intel's new E5 E5-4600 CPUs. The Intel E5 was officially introduced by Intel in March of this year. The E5 chip offers greater performance and I/O capabilities over previous generations of Intel server CPUs.
On the networking side, the new boxes included a flexible LOM (LAN on Motherboard) adapter. The LOM enables HP customers to choose 1 GbE and 10 GbE as well as InfiniBand. 40 GbE connections are currently not available as an option.