New SSD 6-pack and 4-packs, IBM i 6.1.1 native I/O support, high-performance PCIe Gen2 adapters, a new multifunction Card, LTO-6, RDX and other enhancements expand Power System I/O capabilities.
Two new SSD packages offer ordering convenience and price savings. The 6-pack SSD feature #ESR2/ESR4 is for the EXP30 Ultra SSD I/O Drawer. The 4-pack SSD features #ESRA/ESRB/ESRC/ESRD are for the SAS bays in a system unit or in an I/O drawer. A maximum of one 4-pack feature can be ordered with a new server. These SSD packages must be ordered with a new server and not ordered with an MES order.
IBM i 6.1.1 native I/O support is announced for the POWER7+ 710/720/730/740 and POWER7+ 770/780. A chargeable #EB34 hardware feature on these POWER7+ servers then allows I/O to be natively attached. Without #EB34 IBM i 6.1 partitions leverage either VIOS or IBM i 7.1 for virtualized I/O.
Support for the existing #EDR1 EXP30 Ultra SSD I/O Drawer is expanded to include the POWER7+ 710/720/730/740/750/760. There is also a statement of direction (SOD) for future additional model support. Software support of #EDR1 is also expanded to include IBM i 7.1 TR6 native support.
The two-port PCIe2 16 Gb Fibre Channel Adapter provides twice the bandwidth per port of an 8 Gb Fibre Channel adapter. Both a full high (#EN0A) and a low profile (#EN0B) adapter are offered for the POWER7+ 710/720/730/740/750/760. There is also an SOD for additional model support.
The four-port PCIe2 Converged Network Adapter (CNA) provides two 10 Gb FCoE/CNA optical SR ports plus two 1 Gb RJ45 Ethernet ports. Both a full high (#EN0H) and a low profile (#EN0J) adapter are offered for the POWER7+ 710/720/730/740/750/760. There is also an SOD for additional model support.
The new integrated multifunction card for the Power 750/760 includes four Ethernet, two USB, and one serial port without using a PCIe slot. With feature #EN10, two of the four Ethernet ports are 10 Gb copper twinax ports and two are 10 Gb RJ45. With feature #EN11, two of the four Ethernet ports are 10 Gb optical SR ports and two are 10 Gb RJ45. The #EN10/EN11 differ in two ways from the previously announced integrated multifunction cards #1768 and #1769 on the Power 770/780 which offer the same total number of ports. First, the #EN10/EN11 copper twinax and SR Optical 10Gb ports can support CNA/FCoE. Second, the feature #EN10/EN11 RJ45 ports are capable of 10 GbE or 1 GbE instead of just 1 GbE. There is also an SOD for additional model support.
A half-high LTO-6 tape drive feature #EU11 delivers increased capacity of up to 2.5 GB (uncompressed) or 6.25 TB (typical compression) and enables increased performance of up to 240 MB/s. It is supported in the Power 720/740 "C" and "D" model system units and in the Power 750 "B" model system unit and in the Power 795 1U storage drawer (#5724).
A 1.5 TB RDX cartridge feature #EU15 delivers 50% more capacity than the largest cartridge previously available. It is supported in the #EU03/EU04/EU23 and #1103/1104/1123 RDX docking stations.
IBM Power Systems introduces a number of I/O-related enhancements, offering improved functionality, performance, price/performance, and density across the Power product line.
The enhanced EXP30 Ultra SSD I/O Drawer (#EDR1) provides the IBM Power POWER7+ 770 and 780 up to 30 solid-state drives (SSD) in just 1U of rack space without any PCIe slots. The drawer provides up to 480,000 IOPS and up to 12.6.2 TB of capacity for AIX or Linux clients. Plus up to 48 additional HDDs can be directly attached to the Ultra Drawer (still without using any PCIe slots) providing up to 43.2 TB additional capacity in only 4U additional rack space for AIX clients. This ultra-dense SSD option is very similar to the Ultra Drawer (#5888), which remains available to the Power 710, 720, 730, and 740.
Two new GX++ adapters provide PCIe Gen2 functionality and performance in extremely dense and efficient packaging for the Power 795. The new GX++ adapters eliminate the need for a GX++ 12X adapter, 12X cables, a 12X-attached PCIe I/O drawer, and a PCIe adapter. In some cases, they may even alleviate the need for an expansion rack. The two adapters are a 2-port 16Gb Fibre Channel adapter (#EN23) and a 2-port 10Gb Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) or Converged Network Adapter (#EN22).
IBM i 7.1 adds support for RDX Removable Media Devices. RDX docking stations and drives can provide a more reliable, higher performance, and lower cost option to traditional entry tape options such as DAT160 and older QIC and LTO-2 tape drives. IBM i 7.1 supports USB RDX Removable Disk on newer servers and supports the new SATA RDX Removable Disk #EU07) on many earlier servers. In addition, IBM i 7.1 adds support for the USB-attached DAT160 tape drive.
IBM i 7.1 also adds support for a significantly lower priced 2-port asynchronous communications adapter (#5289 and #5290). Compared to the existing IBM i supported 2-port adapter (#2893 and #2894), the new adapter is half the price (less a modem) and is available as either a low-profile (#5289) or full-high (#5290) adapter, improving configuration flexibility.
RDX docking stations are refreshed with slightly newer technology (#EU03, #EU04, and #EU23) replacing the existing docking stations (#1103, #1104, and #1123) in most proposals. Similarly, the slimline DVD drive that is placed in Power 710 through Power 780 system units is refreshed and is now ordered as feature 5771 instead of the current feature 5762.
The 900/856 GB 10k RPM SAS HDD (#1737, #1738, #1751, and #1752) offers lower cost per gigabyte and better storage density compared to smaller HDDs. Four feature numbers are used to identify if the drive is SFF-1 or SFF-2 and if shipped formatted with 528-byte sectors for RAID arrays (ordered for IBM i environments) or JBOD formatted with 512-byte sectors (ordered for AIX/Linux/VIOS environments).
PowerLinux servers improve their big data capabilities with new SSD features offering more attractive pricing (#ELQK (177GB) and #ELQL (387GB))for the highest performance needs. Plus for lower performance but better cost per gigabyte, support is provided for the new 900 GB 10k RPM HDD.
The PCIe Gen2 RoCE Adapter capabilities are enhanced with expanded configuration options and expanded support. A new RoCE adapter (#EC29/#EC30) provides an SR fiber optical cabling option in addition to the existing adapter with copper cabling (#EC27/#EC28). RoCE support is expanded to include the Power 795.
IBM introduces several I/O enhancements to the Power Systems product line to further improve performance, virtualization, price performance, and physical footprint efficiency.
The EXP30 Ultra SSD I/O Drawer (#5888) provides an ultra-dense and ultra-high-performance option for solid state drives (SDDs). Up to thirty 387 GB Enterprise Multi-Level Cell (eMLC) solid state drives (#ES02) provide up to 11.6 TB of capacity in only 1U of 19-inch rack space. A pair of very powerful integrated SAS controllers run the drawer's SSD providing up to 400,000+ IOPS. The Ultra Drawer attaches to GX++ slots in Power 710, 720, 730, and 740 without using any PCIe slots in the system unit.
A new low profile PCIe Gen2 SAS adapter (#ESA2) is small enough to fit in the 2U Power 710/730 or in the 2U PCIe Riser card of the Power 720/740. It supports SSDs providing RAID 0, 5, 6 and 10 capabilities using a single PCIe slot. A full high version (#ESA1) is available for taller Power Systems PCIe Gen2 slots. Though its overall SSD performance capacity is lower than that of the #5913 PCIe2 1.8GB Cache RAID SAS Adapter announced in October 2011, its ability to fit in 2U space, use of only one PCIe slot, and price performance can be advantageous.
SSD capacity and performance are doubled for SFF SAS bays with a 387 GB eMLC solid state drive (#ES0A/ES0B/ES0C/ES0D). These SSDs have twice the capacity of the existing 177GB SSDs (#1775/1787/1793/1794) and their price per GB is significantly improved.
The PCIe2 4-port 1Gb Ethernet Adapter (#5260/5899) offers four copper/UTP Ethernet ports at a significantly lower price than the existing 4-port UTP adapters (#5271/5717). Or compared to the existing 2-port UTP adapters (#5281/5767) it offers twice the number or ports, in the same single PCIe slot.
The PCIe2 LP 8Gb 4-port Fibre Channel Adapter (EN0Y) is a low profile adapter for Gen2 slots. It is smaller than but than functionally equivalent to the existing full high 4-port 8Gb adapter (#5729) announced in October 2011.
The RDX 320GB Removable Disk Drive (#EU08) provides a cartridge with twice the capacity of the 160GB RDX Disk Drive (#1106) for about the same price. RDX is a great alternative save/restore technology for many AIX/Linux clients who might have selected DAT160 tape drives. It can provide great performance, reliability, and extremely long media life.
The 80/160GB DAT160 USB Tape Drive (#EU16) is enclosed in a Power 720/740/750 system unit and driven through a USB connection. Its drive performance is the same as the existing SAS DAT160 drives (#5619), but it does not use the integrated SAS controller and thus may offer an overall performance advantage to the system.
A new 2-port 10Gb Ethernet adapter (#EC27/EC28) provides RDMA over Converged Ethernet (RoCE) capability for AIX. This can allow greater throughput, lower latency and improved processor utilization.
Multiple new I/O enhancements are announced for Power Systems servers in October 2011 including:
- High-performance PCIe SAS Adapter for larger numbers of solid-state drives (SSDs) and hard disk drives (HDDs)
- Entry cost 2-port Async Adapter
- Four additional 10Gb Ethernet adapter options
- Four-port 8 Gb Fibre Channel adapter
- Larger-capacity 15k rpm SFF disk drive (283 GB or 300 GB)
- Massive 1TB RDX Removable Disk Drive Cartridge
The PCIe2 1.8 GB Cache RAID SAS Adapter (#5913) is a large-cache PCIe SAS adapter that provides high-performance capabilities for large quantities of SSDs or HDDS. It is the most advanced SAS controller ever offered, allowing clients to reduce the number of PCI slots required and thus help minimize the overall I/O configuration. To support its higher-speed interface and high-density ports, new 6 Gb SAS AA, AT, YO, and X cables are also introduced.
The 2 Port Async EIA-232 PCIe Adapter (#5289 or #5290) is a significantly lower-cost option for AIX and Linux clients compared to the functionally equivalent 4-port Async EIA-232 PCIe Adapter (#5785 or #5277).
Two new low profile PCIe2 Ethernet 4-port adapters (#5279 or #5280) for Linux provide additional capabilities and speed options. Two of 4 ports are 10Gb and two are 1Gb.
Plus two new PCIe2 Ethernet features for full high equivalents of the existing low profile Gen2 2-port 10Gb Adapters expand configuration options (#5287 or #5288).
The PCIe2 8x 4-port Fibre Channel Adapter (#5729) is a new PCIe Gen2 adapter. It provides four 8 Gb Fibre Channel ports and doubles both the number of ports and the total bandwidth available on a Fibre Channel adapter. With the additional ports and bandwidth, clients can increase virtualization and consolidation of Fibre Channel configurations while conserving valuable PCIe Gen2 slots.
283 GB and 300 GB capacity points are added to the 15, 000 rpm SFF disk drive options, doubling the 15, 000 rpm capacity previously available for POWER7 clients with SFF bays. Four feature codes are used to indicate whether the drive is 283 GB or 300 GB and whether it has a SFF-1 (Gen1) or SFF-2 (Gen2 for the EXP24S) carrier (#1948, #1953, #1879 or #1880).
The 1TB Removable Disk Drive Cartridge (#EU01) provides a RDX disk drive in a rugged cartridge to be used in the USB-attached RDX Internal and External Docking Stations (#1103, #1104, or #1123). This option may be an excellent alternative to DAT160 or QIC tape drives.
- July 2011
SAS-bay-based SSD (solid state drive) options are enhanced with expanded configuration options for the 177 GB SSD. These 177GB drives provide 2.5 times more capacity per drive than the previously available 69 GB SSD for the POWER7 710, 720, 730, 740, 750, 755, 770, and 780, and for the POWER6 520, 550, 560, 570, and 595. The 177 GB drive provides an improved price per drive and a much improved cost per gigabyte compared to the 69GB SSD.
Four feature codes are used for this drive to indicate which set of OS protection rules are used and to indicate what type of SFF SAS bay in which it is placed (SSF-1 or SSF-2). The four features are #1775, #1787, #1793, and #1794. Note feature 1775 and feature 1787 were previously announced on Power 795 but are now supported in many more models.
A few SSDs may reduce the need for many HDDs, saving rack space, I/O drawers, maintenance, and energy. SSDs can often do so while improving system performance and batch windows at the same time.
- April 2011
Power Systems announced several I/O options 12 April 2011 which are being introduced starting May 2011. These I/O options enhance the Power Systems product lines, offering clients better performance, more cost-effective configurations, and stronger longer-term hardware investments. These enhancements include:
New disk-only I/O drawer:
The #5887 EXP24S is a high-density, high-performance SFF drive drawer, holding up to 24 SAS drives in just 2U of 19-inch rack space. This is twice the number of drives compared to the currently offered #5886 EXP12S I/O drawer (#5886) and its twelve 3.5-inch drive capacity. The EXP24S can also be ordered in mode 1, 2, or 4, providing additional configuration flexibility. In addition to 6 Gb SAS capability, the EXP24S SFF drives provide significant energy savings compared to the EXP12S 3.5-inch drives.
New SAS-bay-based SSD:
SAS-bay-based SSD options are enhanced with a 177 GB SSD which provides 2.5 times more capacity per drive than the current 69 GB SSD. The 177 GB drive provides a much improved cost per gigabyte and requires a smaller number of SAS bays for the same number of gigabytes. A few SSDs may reduce the need for many HDDs, saving rack space, I/O drawers, maintenance, and energy. SSDs can often do so while improving system performance and batch windows at the same time. This new SSD option is announced only on the Power 795.
New 571/600 GB disk drive:
A 571 GB / 600 GB 10k RPM SFF Disk Drive is added to SFF disk drive options, offering a lower cost per gigabyte and more gigabytes per rack space.
IBM Systems Director Management Console (SDMC):
SDMC is the next-generation Hardware Management Console (HMC). The SDMC incorporates the IBM Systems Director software to provide consistency with IBM Systems Director on other platforms. The SDMC offers several advantages over the HMC, including the ability to manage both Power Systems servers and Power Systems blades based on Power Architecture.
IBM/BNT Switches for Power Systems:
Three IBM BNT data center Ethernet switches are available for IBM POWER7 processor-based servers. They offer three great top-of-rack (TOR) alternatives for the access or distributed layer for IBM Power Systems data center switching environments. They are the IBM BNT RackSwitches: G8124ER (1455-24E), G8052R (1455-48E), and G8264R (1455-64C).
Three QLogic 4X QDR IB switches can now be ordered with Power Systems hardware and supported on Power Systems. They provide up to 36-port, 72-port and 324-port capability (7874-036, 7874-072 and 7874-324). Plus a new PCIe Gen2 low-profile IB QDR adapter provides high-speed 4X InfiniBand connections for AIX/Linux clusters to these switches.
A new 2U I/O drawer (#5724) replaces the existing media I/O drawer for the Power 795 which holds DVD or tape drives. In addition, the existing Ultrium5 or LTO-5 tape drive is added to the Power 750 internal tape and to the Power 795 media drawer drive options.
IBM i existing I/O enhancements:
IBM i 6.1 with 6.1.1 machine code will now support the previously announced PCIe RAID and SSD SAS Adapter (#2053, #2054, and #2055) with its 177 GB SSD Modules. Previously this was support required IBM i 7.1 or required IBM i 6.1 with VIOS. Also the previously announced PCIe Riser Card (Gen 2), will have direct support with IBM i 7.1.
Additional information about future planned I/O enhancements is now available on the Product Preview / Statement of Direction.
- October 2010
Power Systems I/O enhancements announced in October 2010 include:
Optional PCIe Gen2 slots and two new PCIe Gen 2 adapters are introduced on the Power 720 and 740 Express servers and are planned to be available in December, 2010. These can provide greater bandwidth than using Gen1 slots and adapters.
- The PCIe Riser Card (#5685) provides four PCIe Gen2 low-profile (LP) slots in the Power 720/740 system unit. The riser card supports both Gen1 and Gen2 Low Profile PCIe adapters. It is initially supported on AIX and Linux.
- The PCIe2 (Gen2) Low Profile 2-port 10GbE SR Adapter (#5284) and the PCIe2 (Gen2) Low Profile 2-Port 10GbE SFP+ Copper Adapter (#5286) are supported in the new Gen2 PCIe Riser Card.
Additional LTO-5 support for IBM i 6.1 is planned to be available starting 26 November. The IBM tape libraries TS3100, TS3200, TS3310, and TS3500 with LTO-5 drives will be supported after applying the then available latest IBM i PTFs.
PCIe Cryptographic Adapter support is planned to be expanded 19 November. IBM i 6.1 support is added to the existing AIX and IBM i 7.1 support. The PCIe Cryptographic adapter provides additional performance and function with improved RAS features compared to the PCI-X predecessor. The adapter provides a powerful, tamper-resistant solution for POWER7 and POWER6 clients who handle secure cryptographic and digital signature workload in their business.
- August 2010
PCIe-based SSD offering
SSD or flash technology can provide a tremendous number of I/O operations per second compared to spinning disk drives, helping to slash I/O-bound batch window times and improve interactive or query response times. The PCIe RAID & SSD SAS Adapter is a new SSD offering designed to provide greater capacity, smaller footprint and lower list price per GB in many POWER7® processor-based server configurations, when compared to the currently available SSD storage module which plugs into a SAS disk bay. The currently available 69 GB SSD remains available and continue to be an excellent choice for many configurations.
The new PCIe-based SSD offering consists of a double-wide SAS PCIe adapter which has sockets directly on the adapter for up to four 177 GB SSD modules (over 700 GB per adapter). These 177 GB SSD modules use a new eMLC flash technology that offers enterprise class performance and reliability. The new offering is available with the Power 710, 720, 730, 740, 750, 755, 770 and 780.
The PCIe RAID & SSD SAS Adapter is supported by these operating systems, or later – AIX® 5.3, IBM i 7.1, RHEL 5.5 or SLES 10.
PCIe Crypto Coprocessor 4765-001 supported on IBM i 7.1
The PCIe Crypto Coprocessor 4765-001, previously announced for AIX, is now supported on IBM i 7.1. IBM cryptographic adapters are suited to applications requiring high-speed, security-sensitive, RSA acceleration, cryptographic operations for data encryption and digital signing, secure management and use of cryptographic keys, or custom cryptographic applications. The PCIe Crypto Coprocessor, which provides both cryptographic coprocessor and secure-key cryptographic accelerator functions in a single PCIe card, is designed to meet the needs of clients with banking, credit card or finance applications, especially those who require hardware designed to meet FIPS 140-2 level 4 security.
LTO5 Tape drive for the Power 720 and 740 Express
Internal tape drive options are expanded with the addition of a SAS HH LTO5 tape drive which can be placed in the Power 720 or 740 Express system unit. Existing external LTO5 tape options remain available for other POWER6 and POWER7 processor-based servers.
IBM 7216-1U2 Multi-media Storage Enclosure
This compact (1U) multi-media storage enclosure may be externally attached to POWER7 processor-based servers. It provides a slightly lower U.S. list price than the predecessor IBM 7214-1U2 enclosure and can accommodate a variety of the latest level removable media and storage devices. Supported drives include SAS LTO5 tape, SAS DAT320 tape, USB DAT320 tape, SATA DVD-RAM and USB Removable Disk (RDX).
IBM i I/O enhancements
IBM i has several I/O enhancements. In addition to the support of the PCIe Crypto card, support for Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE), external LTO-5 drives, IOP-less ProtecTIER, and a new 283 GB 10k RPM internal disk drive is added.
- FCoE or Converged Network Adapter support is provided with IBM i 6.1 or later and with VIOS to use the full NIC, Fibre Channel and NPIV functions of the FCoE adapters now available on Power servers.
- LTO-5 support for the IBM TS2250 and TS2350 is now available for IBM i 6.1 or later.
- Smart IOA support (IOP-less) for the IBM ProtecTIER is now available for IBM i 6.1.
Previously only IOP-based support had been available and this enhancement provides for great configuration flexibility, lower cost configurations and support on POWER7 servers by IBM i.
- The 283 GB 10k RPM disk drive is a Small Form Factor (SFF) SAS drive supported by IBM i 6.1 or later.
- April 2010
IBM introduces the PCIe Cryptographic Coprocessor 4765-001. It provides additional performance and function with improved adapter reliability, availability, and serviceability (RAS) features. The adapter provides a powerful, tamper-resistant solution for POWER7 and POWER6® clients who handle secure cryptographic/digital signature workload in their business in a highly efficient manner.
The PCIe adapter hardware offers up to two to seven times the performance and provides better scalability compared to the existing PCI-X generation of cryptographic coprocessor adapter. The potential performance and scalability gains can result in more work done per adapter and fewer adapters per server compared to the predecessor PCI-X adapter.
IBM cryptographic adapters are suited for applications requiring high-speed, security-sensitive, RSA acceleration, cryptographic operations for data encryption and digital signing, secure management, and use of cryptographic keys, or custom cryptographic applications. These can include financial applications such as PIN generation and verification in automated teller and point-of-sale (POS) transaction servers, remote key loading of ATMs and POS terminals, Web-serving applications, Public Key Infrastructure applications, smart card applications, and custom proprietary solutions. Clients with banking, credit card, or finance applications, should value these cryptographic adapters highly, especially if you require hardware designed to meet the FIPS 140-2 level 4 security.
The PCIe cryptographic adapter is ordered using feature code #4807, #4808 or #4809. The predecessor #4764 PCI-X adapter is still available for AIX and IBM i. AIX supports the new PCIe adapter.
- February 2010
DAT tape drive
IBM is introducing new DAT320 entry tape drive for the Power 750 and Power 520/550. It offers signficant price/performance advantages compared to the previous generation DAT tape drive, the DAT160 80/160 GB tape drive. Compared to the DAT160, the new DAT320 for entry servers has up to 100% more capacity, up to 75% better performance, and uses up to 50% less power. The DAT320 160/320 (#5661) stores up to 320 GB of data on a single cartridge using typical 2X hardware compression, a standard capability provided in the tape drive. It provides up to 160 GB of capacity without compression. Using 2X compression, its rated speed is up to 86 GB/hour, filling a DAT320 cartridge in about four hours. The drive can read/write both DAT320 and DAT160 cartridges, but cannot read the older technology DAT72 cartridge. The DAT320 can be placed in the half-high removable media bay in the POWER6 520/550 and POWER7 750.