Xeon 7300: Intel's First Quadruple-Core Processor Platform

Sep 06, 2007

The Xeon 7300er processor family is Intel's first quad-core processor for multiple processor servers. The energy efficiency of the new processors differs depending on the speed with 2.93 GHz requiring 130 Watts compared to 50 Watts for a 1.86 GHz version.

The main features of the new processor are its computational power and virtualization functionality. Optimized virtualization relies on Intel's proprietary virtualization technology which is integrated with the 4-core processor; to leverage the technology the processors, chipset, BIOS, Virtual Machine Monitor (VMM) and application programs on the machine running the processor all need to support Intel's virtualization technology. VMware ESX servers have been custom designed to support the new processors in collaboration with VMWare. The 7300 chipset promises four times as much memory capacity in comparison with earlier multi-processor platforms. New technologies guaranteed an unhindered flow of data between the processor, memory and I/O.

All Intel servers with the new micro-architecture can be grouped to form a dynamic virtual server infrastructure, no matter whether they rely on single, dual or multiple processors. This gives administrators the ability to migrate virtual machines to another physical server, thus increasing availability and facilitating load balancing, disaster recovery and maintenance. Thanks to Intel VT FlexMigration platforms based on future Intel CPUs with 45 nanometer technology can be integrated seamlessly to create virtual server infrastructures.

Prices depend on the clock speed, cache size, energy efficiency and order volume (at least 1000 units). The power-saving L7345 blade candidate will then cost US$ 856 (1.86 GHz at 50 Watts and 8 MByte L2 cache). The mid-range processor with more speed and less memory is the E7330 for US$ 1391 (2.4 GHz at 80 Watts and 6 MByte L2 cache). The fastest, biggest, hottest is the X7350 for US$ 2301 (2.93 GHz at 130 Watts and 8 MByte cache).

Intel has released various benchmark results, along with the technical specifications of a server system that uses the new platform.

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