The new Intel Xeon E7 processor, what is there to expect?

Di Tulis Oleh Kucheng Ling

Introduction

Intel, the semiconductor chip manufacturer behemoth, is already more than forty years old and has been through significant changes in the last decade. Although based in Santa Clara, in the heart of California’s Silicon Valley, most of the production as well as research and development are being done elsewhere. It is not surprising then to learn that the latest incarnation of the premier server processors from the Xeon family, the E7, has been designed by Intel India, the outpost that is based in Bangalore.

Processors of the Xeon family have never been intended for consumers, but for professional use in servers and embedded systems. While some workstation systems also deploy Xeon processors, the multi-socket and multi-processing capability, as well as a larger cache, predestined the Xeon for the use in data intensive environments.


What will the new Intel Xeon E7 processors feature?

The newly expanded Xeon family will receive eighteen E7 incarnations which will range from six over eight to ten cores (12, 16 and 20 threads, respectively), and the tact frequency will range from 1.73 GHz to 2.40 GHz. Power consumption will run, per processor, from 105W to 130W and the L3 cache will feature up to whopping 30MB. The multiprocessing will allow from two-way to up to eight CPU sockets, which is a eighty core configuration, featuring up to 160 threads per server. According to Intel technicians wild configurations featuring up to 256 sockets are possible, if you are out to build the new supercomputer. The Xeon E7’s architecture is capable of handling DDR3 RAM memory of up to two Terabytes.


What do all the technical capabilities provide?

It is unquestionable that the new Intel Xeon E7 will provide an as of yet unseen performance. Intel has figured out some pretty sophisticated energy saving features, which will considerably reduce the power consumption in the portions of the chip that are running idle. It has been established that the new Xeon outperforms the previous version by up to forty percent. The new Xeons also provide some highly developed security features that will provide the servers with much higher data integrity.

It is not really clear just how much the high end improvement of processing will deliver within the already existing applications and the ones currently in development, but the tests have been providing some staggering statistical data. Intel has furthermore developed a fast encryption and decryption data set that is integrated in all Xeon E7 processors, the Advanced Encryption Standard New Instruction. Intel has furthermore outfitted the processors with their Trusted Execution Technology, which was developed to keep malware out from applications.

Further technologies that are included in the new Xeon E7 chips include the Intel Virtualization Technology and the Intel Turbo Boost Technology. The prices are supposed to range from $744 for the 6-core basic model to considerable $4,616 for the top of the line 10-core model. While the features do promise a wide array of improvement capabilities, the pricing will nevertheless caution many IT professionals seeking to upgrade.


written by Andy G