Reader Feedback On Those 720+ and 740+ Boxes Are Gonna Cost Ya
March 11, 2013 Hey, TPM
The thing about the four-core processors in the 710+ and 720+ is that they are P05 software group machines. To keep them “small” IBM has fixed them so that they don’t support ANY external disk apart from SAN-attach and no external I/O towers either. This is clearly deliberate because–as we both know–most customers with a traditional IBM i workload don’t need more than four cores but they surely do need more disk space than you can squeeze into a single system chassis and more performance, too. Unless you go to SSDs, of course. 🙂
And there’s another kick in the teeth. There’s no hot-swap I/O in the 7XX system chassis. They have a power interlock on the lid so you can’t pull a card without downtime (although you might be able to change a fan). That isn’t going to be acceptable to most customers, so they will want an external I/O tower just for that feature. That pushes them into the P10 band straight away.
We’ve been here before, of course, and at least this time IBM is seeing the threat from the Intel boxes and pricing its “smallest” servers to compete directly. Sadly they are competing with systems that do expand to some extent (especially System x servers) and possibly have more memory, too.
But I am seeing successful systems being sold now with SAN storage just because they stay in the P05 tier and, with software licensing costs on ERP packages the way they are, that justifies quite a lot of pain in terms of restricted I/O in other areas. The resilience has to come through PowerHA or some other HA software, though.
Keep up the good work!
Referencing the recent article, you forget one important aspect:
Use of external storage, that is Storwize V3700, to a P05 system. A Power 720 can have maximum of 64 GB, but a Power 710 can have 256 GB of memory. This is ideal for partitioning, except that on a Power7+ machine where we can have 256 GB, IBM gives a partner just 9 percent in base discount, and on the old Power7, where we can have maximum of 128 GB, there we get the normal 38 percent in base discount. P05 systems are ideal for external storage because of then we don’t have the limit of eight internal disks, and price of IBM i is 20 percent of the cost on a P10 system.
Thanks for the insight, gentlemen, and you ladies pipe up, too. Keep the input coming and we can help each other sort out the best bang for the buck in the new Power7+ lineup.