Small, Low Power Servers May Play a Large Role

A new type of exceptionally low-powered servers is aiding web companies and hosting businesses with reducing their electric bills, and supporters believe they could play a bigger part in the organization as well. New Dell and SGI servers lessen power usage by decreasing the amount of server components, combining fans and power supplies among multiple servers, and using low-power processors typically found in smaller devices. Dell’s “Fortuna” server, which packs twelve little servers into a 2U server box, is a computer that works entirely on its own, but each server uses fewer than 30 watts of power – much less than that of a normal server chassis of equivalent magnitude. Dell created the server while predominantly considering web hosting businesses’ needs.

SeaMicro’s SM10000, launched just 6 months ago, stuffs 512, Z530 Atom chips inside a 10U chassis that is mounted in 19” server racks. 10U is about 1/4th of the size of a typical server cabinet. This new approach is a special ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit) that is substituted for most of the modules on a standard server board, counting storage and networking switches, allowing only 3 chips to remain: the processor, DRAM and ASIC. “The big processors are like taking a spaceship to the grocery store for most problems today,” says Andrew Feldman, SeaMicro’s CEO. “What you really need is a Prius.” SeaMicro says the smaller server chassis offer the same level of capability at a smaller portion of the power of conventional servers mounted in 19” racks. They also take up less space.

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Small, Low Power Servers May Play a Large Role - RackSolutions
Smaller, low-powered servers are changing the landscape of web companies and hosting businesses as they reduce bills and are much less complex than other servers.
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