Virtualization Technology News and Information
Sun x64 Servers With New Quad-Core AMD Opteron Processors Boost Performance Up to 35 Percent for Enterprise, HPC and Web Applications
Sun Microsystems, Inc. (NASDAQ:JAVA) today announced an enhanced line of Sun Fire(TM) x64 servers and Sun Blade(TM) systems that deliver up to 35 percent better performance over previous generations. With the new Quad-Core AMD Opteron(TM) processor, Sun's strengthened x64 server line offers exceptional scalability, virtualization and consolidation capabilities with up to twice the storage, memory and I/O capacity as compared to competing servers. Sun's portfolio of x64 Quad-Core AMD Opteron processor-based servers offer a choice of Solaris(TM) 10 Operating System (OS), Linux, Windows and VMWare. All x64 systems announced today are available for a free 60-day trial via Sun's Try and Buy Program at

"Sun's AMD Opteron processor-based x64 servers stand out in three areas that matter to customers -- performance, energy efficiency and scalability," said Lisa Sieker, vice president, Systems Marketing, Sun Microsystems. "Sun's innovative systems design with Solaris and the new Quad-Core AMD Opteron processor is a potent combination for complex workloads in HPC, as well as virtualization and consolidation."

Sun's x64 Servers Trump Competition on Industry Standard Benchmarks with Increased Performance, Lower Power Consumption

With better performance and increased energy efficiency, Sun's x64 servers based on the new Quad-Core AMD Opteron processor have posted five world record results on industry standard benchmarks.

Key systems in Sun's x64 family include:

  • Sun Blade X6440 server module - The Sun Blade X6440 is a four-socket server with industry leading memory footprint and high-speed I/O to deliver a compute dense platform balanced for high-volume workloads. The Sun Blade X6440 server module posted a world record 16-thread result on the prominent HPC SPECompM2001 benchmark that is often used to compare the performance of shared memory servers executing compute-intensive scientific applications(1).
  • Sun Fire X4600 M2 server - The only compact two-to-eight socket server that can consolidate over 110 x86 servers onto one Sun Fire X4600 M2 server, saving typically over $150,000 per year. With the enhanced Quad-Core AMD Opteron processor, the unique 32-core 4U rackmount server delivers world record integer throughput performance for all x86 systems (2) as well as the best eight processor result on SPECjbb2005, the Java-based Enterprise benchmark(3).
  • Sun Fire X4240 server – The two-socket Sun Fire X4240 is designed with more memory slots and storage capacity and higher storage throughput delivering a world record-breaking two CPU result on the SPECweb2005 benchmark with 25 percent better web server performance than the HP ProLiant DL385 G5 and 27 percent better performance than the HP ProLiant DL380 G5 (4).
  • Sun Fire X4440 server – A SPECompL2001 world record holder running 16 threads (5), the Sun Fire X4440 server is the industry's only four-socket 2RU x64 server based on the Quad-Core AMD Opteron processor. It also provides the same socket capacity in half the space of competitive servers.

Additional information on Sun servers' record setting performance is available at:

110:1 Consolidation Ratio

Sun's x64 servers with the new Quad-Core AMD Opteron processor are capable of consolidating systems at more than a 110:1 ratio and supporting up to 100 virtual servers on a single system. The servers are further enhanced with the Solaris(TM) Containers capability in the Solaris OS. Solaris offers ultimate scalability and manageability with the AMD Opteron processor spanning from two cores to 32 cores in a single architecture which allows users to standardize and streamline their IT support requirements and scale as their business needs require. Solaris 10 users can also select Solaris ZFS(TM) as their root file system and take advantage of a number of key virtualization enhancements enabling them to easily consolidate and maximize datacenter efficiency.

Sun xVM Server provides complementary virtualization solutions for heterogeneous environments. Sun(TM) xVM Ops Center software provides a unified management interface for both Sun xVM Server and Solaris Containers. With AMD Virtualization(TM) technology (AMD-V(TM)), and Sun's xVM infrastructure, the enhanced line of Sun x64 servers simplify and optimize the next-generation datacenter, maximizing consolidation and lowering overhead associated with software virtualization, allowing for increased system utilization, performance and scalability improvements.

More information on Sun's complete line of x64 systems is available at:

“Over the past five years Sun and AMD have worked together to provide customers with a broad choice of energy efficient and high performing x86 servers in 2P, 4P and 8P configurations, ” said Patrick Patla, vice president and general manager, Server and Workstation Division, AMD. “The enhanced 45nm Quad-Core AMD Opteron processor combined with Sun's x86 server designs can help customers improve consolidation and virtualization, increase ROI and boost performance.”

Sun's x64 systems powered by AMD Opteron processors continue to deliver customer value across a range of industries from education to financial services and have been deployed by customers including Citco Technology Management and SAP University Competence Center (UCC). Sun x64 systems customer success stories can be found at

Sun Services Provide Expertise in Energy Reduction, Virtualization and High Performance Environments

Sun offers a suite of services to maximize the performance of the x64 server line ranging from virtualization and energy reduction consulting to HPC offerings. With Sun virtualization and consolidation services, customers can reduce power and cooling costs by as much as 60 percent and space savings by as much as 57 percent (6). To further reduce power and energy costs, customers can utilize Sun(SM) Eco Services Suite, which provides users with technical evaluations needed to optimize datacenter efficiency. Sun also offers HPC services to help customers architect, deploy, and manage their HPC environments for faster time to deployment and with reduced risk. For more information on Sun services visit

Availability and Pricing

The Sun Fire x64 based product line pricing starts at $1,900 (USD). For more information on Sun's x64 servers and Sun Blade systems visit

1) Sun Blade X6440 server module (4 chips, 16 cores, 16 OMP threads), 35896 SPECompMpeak2001.

2) Sun Fire X4600 M2 server, 386 SPECint_rate2006.

3) Sun Fire X4600 M2 server, 1037851 SPECjbb2005 bops, 129731 SPECjbb2005 bops/JVM.

4) Sun Fire X4240 server, 37630 SPECweb2005; HP ProLiant DL385 G5,30007 SPECweb2005; HP ProLiant DL380 G5, 29591 SPECweb2005.

5) Sun Fire X4440 server (4 chips, 16 cores, 16 OMP threads), 175,648 SPECompLpeak2001.

6) Crimson Study, March 2008: Beyond the Technology Argument: Upgrading to Solaris 10 Delivers Significant Economic Value as Well.

Published Tuesday, December 09, 2008 6:54 PM by David Marshall
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