Opteron now gets an ARM twist with the introduction of the development kit from AMD. Announced this week, the “Seattle” Opteron processors will have quad ARM CPU cores and will feature low power consumption. The kit will encompass 16 GB of RAM, 8 SATA ports, PCIe connectors. The processors employ dual-channel DDR3/DDR4 memory controller, that supports SODIMM, UDIMM or RDIMM ECC memory with maximum supported data rates going up to 1866 MHz.
The Opteron A1100 Series development has all the required hardware and software necessary to jumpstart application development. The A1100 series processors are based upon Cortex A57 and are one of the first processors that support 64 bit and fully support ARMv8 instruction sets.
Manufactured on 28 nm process, the Opteron A1100 series SoCs will be available in the second half of 2014. The development kit, bundled with the operating system and tools, is available for $2999 USD.
The development kit is built around a microATX motherboard, with two registered DDR3 DIMMs ( total 16GB). The PCI Express connector is configurable toa single x8 or dual x4 ports. The kit uses off-the-shelf power supplies. The kit runs a version of Fedora Linux that includes Apache web server, MySQL database engine, and PHP scripting language for developing web applications.
The line of the Seattle opteron processors are intended for highly-efficient, high-density server arrays that target web hosting and cloud servers. There biggest advantage over AMD’s x86 ( or for that matter Intel’s x86) is the power envelope and the price to performance ratio. The development kit should come handy for hardware developers of data center and early software adapter. Check out the AMD link for details and for applying for the kit.