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IBM X6 architecture

23 January 2014

IBM

IBM has announced the sixth generation of its enterprise X-Architecture for System x and PureSystems servers.

The X6 architecture provides several new features aimed at analytics and cloud based operations. Integrated eXFlash memory-channel storage is included for the first time, this Dimm-based storage provides up to 12.8 terabytes of ultrafast flash storage close to the processor, increasing application performance by providing the lowest system write latency available, desinged for analytics applications.

It is claimed that the X6 can provide significantly lower latency for database operations, which can lower licensing costs and reduce storage costs by reducing or eliminating the need for external SAN/NAS storage units.

The new architecture is modular, scalable design that supports multiple generations of CPUs.

The memory and storage increase virtual machine capacity to allow SaaS delivery of applications. Another new feature is autonomous self-healing CPU and memory systems maximise application uptime by proactively identifying potential failures and taking action to correct them. In addition, Upward Integration Modules can help reduce the cost and complexity of system administration by allowing operators to perform management tasks through virtualisation tools.

Server models supported by this new architecture currently include the System x3850 X6 four-socket system, System x3950 X6 eight-socket system, and the IBM Flex System x880 scalable compute nodes.

IBM also is introducing the System x3650 M4 BD storage server, a two-socket rack server supporting up to 14 drives delivering up to 56 terabytes of high-density storage. It provides 46 percent greater performance than previous comparable IBM System x servers and is ideally suited for distributed scale-out of big data workloads.

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