AMD intros modular server platform

Last week, we heard all about AMD's plans for mobile and desktop hardware. This week, the company has switched gears and unveiled something for servers: the AMD Open 3.0 platform.

The platform, AMD says, is a "radical rethinking of the server motherboard designed to the standards developed by the Open Compute Project." For the uninitiated, the Open Compute Project is an effort, led by Facebook, to make more efficient servers for data centers. Part of the idea involves removing extraneous components, which AMD sought to do with its motherboard design:

AMD Open 3.0 enables substantial gains in computing flexibility, efficiency and operating cost by simplifying motherboard design with a single base product to address multiple enterprise workloads, including high-performance computing, cloud infrastructure and storage. This innovative design is optimized to eliminate features typically over-provisioned in traditional server offerings.

Here's a diagram of the AMD Open 3.0 motherboard:

The board has a 16" x 16.7" footprint and is designed to fit inside 1U, 1.5U, 2U, and 3U servers. According to AMD, the following components are included:

  • Two Opteron 6300-series processors
  • 24 memory slots
  • Six Serial ATA 6Gbps ports
  • One dual-channel Gigabit Ethernet NIC
  • As many as four PCI Express slots
  • One "mezzanine connector for custom module solutions"
  • One serial port
  • Two USB ports

AMD goes on to say that "select customers" can already get their hands on pre-production Open 3.0 systems. Everyone else will will have to wait another month or two—the first production machines are due out "before the end of Q1." Systems from Quanta and Tyan will be available through vendors like Avnet Electronics Marketing, Penguin Computing, and others.

For more information about the board and AMD's related efforts, check out the Open Compute page on AMD's website.

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