AMD's Opteron A1100 development platform, built for ARM (Photo: AMD)

AMD's Opteron A1100 development platform, built for ARM (Photo: AMD)

AMD Starts Shipping 64-bit ARM Server Developer Kit

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AMD has launched a developer kit that includes its first 64-bit ARM processor codenamed “Seattle.”

The chip maker started sampling the product earlier this year, according to an announcement it made in January. Its biggest competitor in the space, Applied Micro, has already started shipping production units of its 64-bit ARM System-on-Chip (SoC) called X-Gene.

“We are very pleased to report that we have shipped initial production X-Gene units,” Applied Micro President and CEO Paramesh Gopi said in a statement announcing the company’s second-quarter results Tuesday. “Purchase orders continue to grow and backlog is bulding.”

Applied Micro is a newcomer to the server-chip market, and AMD has been positioning itself as a company with a lot more experience in building server parts than its competitors in the ARM space.

AMD recently hired Karl Freund, a former vice president of marketing for Calxeda, a startup that was also building ARM chips for servers but went bankrupt late last year. Freund is now vice president of server marketing at AMD.

AMD’s new Opteron A1100-series developer kit, which features Seattle, is now available upon request to software and hardware developers, as well as operators of large data centers, according to the company’s announcement.

Suresh Gopalakrishnan, general manager and vice president of AMD’s server business unit, said the goal of the kit’s release was to grow an ecosystem around the architecture. “After successfully sampling to major ecosystem partners such as firmware, OS and tools providers, we are taking the next step in what will be a collaborative effort across the industry to reimagine the datacenter based on the open business model of ARM innovation,” he said.

AMD’s Opteron A1100 supports:

  • 4 and 8 ARM Cortex-A57 cores
  • Up to 4 MB of shared L2 and 8 MB of shared L3 cache
  • Configurable dual DDR3 or DDR4 memory channels with ECC at up to 1866 MT/second
  • Up to 4 SODIMM, UDIMM or RDIMMs
  • 8 lanes of PCI-Express Gen 3 I/O
  • 8 Serial ATA 3 ports
  • 2 10 Gigabit Ethernet ports
  • ARM TrustZone technology for enhanced security
  • Crypto and data compression co-processors

AMD also recently announced an effort to design a server where x86 and ARM chips were interchangeable.

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San Francisco-based business and technology journalist. Editor in chief at Data Center Knowledge, covering the global data center industry.

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