Products ThinkServer

I think we’re at the point where I don’t need to explain SSDs and their importance in the enterprise environment. If you need a refresher though, you can read one of my previous blogs about the mainstream server use of SATA or SAS SSDs.  Why PCIe? There’s a new breed of SSD on the market that use the PCIe interface. Early adopters of this technology have been banks, the oil & gas industry and cloud companies that are buying PCIe accelerators — such as the ones made by Fusion IO — which fit in the traditional PCIe slots at the back of the system. PCIe has a big advantage over the latest 12Gbps SAS with double the bandwidth (our PCIe drives are x4 for about 30Gbps). And, because PCIe connects directly to the CPU, instead of having to go through PCIe to a SAS controller and then convert SAS to flash, there is a big improvement in latency. This is significant because the current generation of flash is so fast that it causes SAS to be the bottleneck. With PCIe 3.0, the speeds are fast enough to make the SSD controller —or the actual NAND — the bottleneck. Why Front Bays? Traditional PCIe drives plug into the server’s rear PCIe slots. This is problematic for two reasons: difficult thermal management and poor serviceability. The...

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Have you heard the great news? Lenovo recently announced two new rack systems and one new tower — the ThinkServer RD550, RD650 and TD350 — into our growing portfolio. While all of these new servers are noteworthy; today, I’m going to take you through the key features of the ThinkServer TD350 tower system. The tower market is extremely dynamic, so the two-socket TD350 is designed for the ultimate in performance, flexibility, reliability, and of course, awesomeness.   Our customers want high-performance tower servers that are versatile enough to handle workloads ranging from those found in SMBs to enterprise data centers. That’s why the TD350 tower was specifically designed for a diverse set of customers. With its incredibly dense 4U form factor, the two-socket TD350 tower is built using the latest Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 family of processors, with a 60 percent increase in total cores over its predecessor. There are also 16 memory DIMM slots providing 512GB of DDR4 memory capacity, right-sized for many workloads. But wait, there’s more! The TD350 has internal storage capacity for up to 32 x 2.5” hard-disk drives or 15 x 3.5” hard-disk drives with a modular design that allows systems to grow based on customer needs. There are two M.2 solid-state drives (SSDs) for reliable, enterprise-class boot and two SD slots for even more hypervisor boot options. The TD350 also supports Lenovo’s AnyRAID technology. This...

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The University of Hawaii is committed to providing a challenging and engaging educational experience, while also promoting the development of ground-breaking educational research. One of the oldest schools within the University of Hawaii, the College of Education is made up of an estimated 1,600 students and 350 faculty members, and has been providing educational research, policy studies, curriculum development, professional development and educational services since 1888. With nearly 2,000 students and faculty logging on to the College of Education’s intranet site daily — and developing data-intense research projects — a high-speed, large-capacity storage solution was imperative. The College of Education’s IT staff needed a comprehensive, affordable and scalable storage solution that was also compatible with Ceph, an open-source storage technology. Already a satisfied Lenovo ThinkServer customer, the College of Education’s IT team immediately looked to Lenovo for a solution. They quickly discovered the Lenovo ThinkServer SA120 direct-attached storage (DAS) device offered an impressive array of features at a great value. With an innovative design supporting 12 x 3.5-inch high-capacity, front-accessible SAS drive bays and an optional four rear-panel 2.5-inch SSD bays, the SA120 DAS array...

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We've just launched the latest in high-performance enterprise server hardware with our Lenovo ThinkServer systems. In developing these systems, some of the challenge in hitting the highest performance levels has shifted from a focus on components, back to the system design and electronic packaging. Our next-gen ThinkServer systems use DDR4 DRAM (Dynamic Random Access Memory) technology — the latest global standard for memory developed by the JEDEC industry standards body. DDR4 memory enables higher frequency operation and capacity with much lower power. In fact, customers can expect a significant increase in power efficiency with DDR4 vs. previous-generation DDR3 memory. In the enterprise space, customers require both the performance increase that higher memory bus frequency enables and the ability to scale up memory capacity (with more DRAM) to fit their applications' needs. However, with the high speeds used for DDR4, the memory interface design is especially sensitive to electrical loading (how many DRAM devices are attached). For higher memory capacity configurations, the memory bus speed normally must be reduced to make the electrical signaling reliable. In our new ThinkServer systems, we've innovated to better satisfy customers' needs for speed and space. We've designed enhanced memory interfaces that enable reliable, higher-frequency operation. After optimizing the memory interface on the server system board, our engineering...

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Today, Lenovo is proud to launch its next-generation tower and rackmount servers based on the Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 Series family of processors. Similar to Lenovo’s success in the client segment, the strategy for the Lenovo ThinkServer portfolio is to offer enterprise-class, high-performing systems, with industry-leading reliability/flexibility and salient value — without unnecessary overhead. Lenovo has partnered with Intel to develop a robust family of servers whose design tenants were focused on the data creation and consumption explosion, and the need for optimized networking connectivity. Intel’s E5-2600 v3 family of processors provide a 50 percent increase in cores over the previous generation, with a maximum core count of 18 per socket and higher encrypted data transfer rates. This offers much greater performance aimed at today’s areas of IT focus, such as data analytics, private cloud deployments, media propagation and HPC. Our new Lenovo ThinkServer systems feature key innovations aimed at addressing the data center challenges adherent in these focus areas. I also wanted to mention that although there is a significant increase in processing power, the E5-2600 v3 family provides world-class energy efficiency. For the last several years, the big data momentum has steadily increased as large firms see the value of investing in data analytics. According to

Continue reading “Designing for Today’s Data-Intensive Workloads”