I just got back from the Intel Nehalem EX (now known as the Xeon 7500) launch event in Boston. I still can’t believe the benchmarks coming out on Windows Server 2008 R2, SQL Server and the Xeon 7500. Performance increases are HUGE when compared to the previous Xeon 7400 and earlier Xeons. The specs are phenomenal – a test system I recently used was a 4-socket system with 8 cores per socket and 2 threads per core (for a total of 64 logical processors). Several OEM’s have announced 8-socket systems (including Fujitsu) – that means you can get 128 logical processors in a single system! That many procs is no problem for Windows Server 2008 R2 and SQL 2008 R2 which can scale to 256 logical processors and address 2TB of RAM.
It’s great to see all the major OEM vendors standing up behind this new Intel design. With Intel moving the mission critical features of Itanium into the Xeon 7500, x86 OEM’s now have access to technology to improve reliability, availability and serviceability (RAS). This results in dramatic price/performance improvements that you can take advantage of for your mission critical workloads. I can’t dive deeply into all the performance and RAS features in this post (like world record Java performance on Windows on the SpecJBB2005 site), or better yet, see what Bryce Olson from Intel has to say.
Sr. Technical Product Manager