Sundry Power Systems Announcements, Here And There
March 19, 2018 Timothy Prickett Morgan
The big Power Systems announcements came out in February, but IBM always has some things that need to get done. And last week, it wrapped up a few loose ends with some nips and tucks in the product line.
In announcement letter 118-030, we learned all about them. First off, IBM has expanded the storage capacity of the Power-based CS822 servers, which are special version of the Power S822 based on Power8 chips that are designed to support the hyperconverged storage stack from Nutanix. We told you all about the CS821 and CS822 servers for running the Nutanix Enterprise Computing Platform back in July 2017. IBM is selling Power versions of the Nutanix stack, which creates a virtual SAN of sorts that spans the same cluster as the compute – and does so on the same virtualized substrate – but only with flash storage. Nutanix offers its wares on clusters that have a mix of disk and flash where some performance can be sacrificed and much more capacity is needed. With the updates, the capacity on the CS822 nodes for Nutanix have been expanded by a factor of three from their prior maximum of 15 TB per node to 45 TB per node. This is done by having up to a dozen SSDs per node. IBM has two different configurations that have been updated; both have 512 GB of main memory in the system and one has a dozen 1.92 TB flash drives (with a system cost of $139,000) and another that has a dozen 3.84 TB (with a system cost of $211,000). Those prices include the cost of the Nutanix HCI storage software.
Interestingly, we also learn in this announcement that IBM is offering a four-core variant of the Power8-based Power S812, which clocks at 3.03 GHz, that runs AIX and also supports the little endian versions of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.4 and higher, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12 SP3 and higher, and Ubuntu Server 16.04.3 and higher.
The Linux-only Power S821LC and Power S822LC for Big Data systems, which IBM launched last year, now have three new 2.5-inch SATA flash drives. The 480 GB unit costs $665, the 960 GB unit costs $1,261, and the 1.92 TB unit costs $2,293.
Finally, even though IBM has created special versions of the Power9 “ZZ” entry servers specifically for running SAP HANA in-memory databases, IBM is for some reason now committing that the more generic Power L922 system will also be allowed to run SAP HANA in production mode with the little endian variants of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.4 and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12 SP3 in little endian mode.
There will probably be more at IBM’s Think 2018 conference in Las Vegas this week, so stay tuned.