IBM claims new x86 servers offer higher security, efficiency and reliability

  • Includes energy efficiency innovations, proactive diagnostic tools
  • Running on Intel’s new Xeon E5-2600 v3 processors

IBM claims new x86 servers offer higher security, efficiency and reliabilityIBM has introduced its M5 portfolio of x86 servers, which it claimed delivers new innovations in security, efficiency and reliability that clients need for mission-critical applications.
The new M5 servers combine high performance with built-in security, efficiency, and reliability, supporting a wide range of enterprise workloads and computing environments, from infrastructure basics to cloud computing to big data and analytics.
The portfolio includes highly configurable models of rack and tower servers, dense systems, blades and integrated systems to help clients address pressing business challenges in the data centre and in the office.
“Clients need to support more demanding workloads with limited budgets while dealing with increasingly sophisticated attacks on their infrastructure,” said Adalio Sanchez, general manager for IBM x86 and PureSystems Solutions.
“Our new M5 servers are designed with the long-standing heritage of IBM innovation to support these enterprise applications with the high security, efficiency and reliability they require,” he added.
The new IBM System x M5 servers include:

  • System x3650 M5: A 2U, two-socket rack server that can be optimised for big data, analytics and cloud;
  • System x3550 M5: A 1U, two-socket rack server designed for a wide range of workloads across diverse industries;
  • System x3500 M5: A high performing, all-in-one 5U, two-socket tower or rack server, designed for business-critical workloads;
  • Flex System x240 M5: Optimised for performance, mainstream virtualisation and enterprise applications;
  • NeXtScale nx360 M5: A half-wide, 1U compute server optimised for density, flexibility, and performance; and
  • NeXtScale System with Water Cool Technology: A direct water-cooled server optimised for energy-efficient performance at low cost.

In addition to System x innovations, the new servers come with all the latest industry-standard features, including Intel’s new Xeon E5-2600 v3 processors, and up to 1.5 terabytes of faster, energy-saving DDR4 memory.
All these servers are available immediately, except for the x240 M5 and NeXtScale System with Water Cool Technology, with availability planned for later this year, and the x3500 M5, with availability planned in the first quarter of 2015.
To help clients move enterprise applications to cloud and improve overall efficiency, reliability and performance, IBM also announced a series of enterprise solutions.
Security innovations
All the new M5 servers contain industry-leading security built-in with Trusted Platform Assurance, an exclusive set of System x security features and practices designed to help safeguard the systems from low-level malware attacks.
All the new servers undergo a highly secure development process and a rigorous validation cycle with controlled updates. In addition, all firmware is designed to be securely built, digitally signed, and verified, so that only authorised firmware can execute, IBM said.
The M5 servers add hardware support for the latest version of the Trusted Platform Module (TPM 2.0) to enable more encryption algorithms and Windows OS support. The new Secure Firmware Rollback feature prohibits any unauthorised updates of previous firmware versions.
The new servers also offer enterprise-class data protection with optional self-encrypting drives and simple, centralised key management through IBM Security Key Lifecycle Management, the company said.
Efficiency innovations
The new M5 servers comes with built-in innovations in power and thermal management design such as extended operating temperature ranges, dual fan zones, and active/ standby mode for power supplies.
The M5 systems can deliver significant energy savings compared with many prior-generation x86 systems, IBM claimed.
For example, the NeXtScale System with Water Cooling technology delivers up to 40% more energy efficiency in the data centre than a comparable air-cooled solution.
In addition, the M5 servers have demonstrated improved performance over the previous generation by up to 131% for a typical Java-based workload, up to 61% for a typical virtualisation workload, and up to 59% for a typical database application for faster business outcomes.
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