Technology allows smaller, less expensive servers

ServerWorks Inc., a Broadcom Corp. subsidiary, rolled out core logic for use in blade and other ultra-compact servers that doubles the memory capacity of the Intel Pentium III processor and halves the number of dual in-line memory modules servers use, resulting in less power-hungry, faster servers.

Called Memory eXpansion Technology (MXT) System I/O, the technology reduces the power requirements of servers and allows more dense, faster servers to be built.

ServerWorks’ I/O logic is combined with research in memory expansion technology from IBM Corp. and will be used in low- and mid-range Intel-based servers. The I/O logic should also result in less expensive computers.

The technology could be used, for instance, in IBM eServer Xseries machines (formerly Netfinity), enabling a server with 4GB of memory to match the performance of an 8G-byte server, IBM claims.

The MXT System I/O technology uses a 32MB L3 cache that operates like a server’s main memory to cache data and move it more quickly to main memory, resulting in performance gains and reduction in power consumption.

The fewer number of DIMMs required to operate the server also reduces the power requirements of the system to 0.5 Watt per DIMM, compared to 5 Watts per DIMM for non-MXT systems. In a four DIMM, 8GB system, only 2 Watts would be required. Fewer DIMMs also allow smaller motherboards, resulting in a more compact configuration.

The MXT technology is available now to server manufacturers.