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IBM Power7 Servers Get 'Energy Star' Nod

Big Blue's new RISC systems meet government standards for power consumption and thermal output.

IBM said two servers from its recently introduced Power7 line received the government's Energy Star stamp of approval for meeting energy efficiency standards.

The Power7 755 and 750 Express models received the Energy Star nod, IBM said.

Energy Star approval requires manufacturers to provide users and the federal government with data on their systems' power use, thermal output, and processor utilization patterns. The program is co-managed by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy.

"IBM has been a strong partner to the Energy Star program," said Andrew Fanara, who manages the EPA's side of Energy Star.

"U.S. EPA appreciates IBM's ongoing contributions to both the development of Energy Star IT equipment standards and their commitment to work with the EPA to improve energy efficiency across the data center ecosystem to deliver environmental benefits both to the data center and through the innovative application of IT capabilities," said Fanara.

Power consumption and heat output are of increasing concern to data center managers as energy prices rise and enterprises face physical space constraints as they add computing equipment to deal with increasing amounts of business data.

IBM unveiled its line of Power7 servers in February. The Power 780, Power 770, Power 755 are enterprise systems, while the Power 750 Express is for mid-market customers who don't need the horsepower and capacity of the higher-end models.

All are based on the new Power7 processor, the full specs of which might fill a phonebook. The upshot, however, is that Power7 chips can run 32 simultaneous tasks thanks to an 8-core architecture and four virtual cores, or threads, per core. That's 4-times the maximum number of cores found in Power6 systems and 8-times the number of threads.

Power7 also features TurboCore mode for intense database and transactional environments (think Wall Street).

TurboCore shifts resources from non-active cores to active cores on-the-fly to increase memory, bandwidth and clock speed. Power7's "Intelligent Threads" technology also affords dynamic resource allocation depending on workloads, while Memory Expansion uses compression technology to virtually double the amount of physical memory available to an application.

InformationWeek has published an in-depth report on data center operational trends. Download the report here (registration required).

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