IBM Announces Power Systems Enterprise 950 Server for Mission-Critical Workloads

August 7th, 2018

Ron Gordon
Director – Power Systems

Director Power Systems

On August 7, 2018, IBM announced the Power Systems Enterprise 950 POWER9-based server, completing the POWER9 family, which began to rollout in September 2018. This high-performance, enterprise server addresses the needs of vertical scaling applications, which need higher capacity than the IBM POWER9 Scale Out servers. The IBM Power Systems Enterprise 950 (E950) also serves the business needs for a highly-virtualized server for multiple mission-critical applications, as well as the consolidation of legacy Power Systems running the Linux or AIX operating systems.

Inside the E950

The E950 contains up to 4 POWER9 processors with the same characteristics as found in the existing POWER9-based systems, with cores/sockets of 8, 10, 11 and 12. The GHz nominal range is 3.15 to 3.6, and the E950 comes pre-configured with the maximum performance setting to yield a 3.8 GHz result. By utilizing the four sockets on the E950 server, the performance metric of rPerfs creates a rating from 870 to 1146, which is 150% the rPerf rating of the predecessor POWER8-based E850C. So, this is obviously a very powerful system, but that is only the start of the great features of the E950.

The IBM Power Systems E950 supports up to 4 TB of industry-standard riser buffered memory per socket, for a total of 16 TB, for highly scalable applications like SAP HANA and EPIC. PowerVM 2.2.6 supports the E950 with improved security support of secured trusted boot images, as well as higher security and performance of live partition mobility. The E950 server supports 10 PCIe Gen4 slots and one PCIe Gen3 slot, full height and half height, blind swap adapters. The server comes with 8 SFF drive bays and 4 integrated NVMe drives directly connected to the processor. To complete the superior capacity and capabilities, the E950 has a 230 GB/s memory bandwidth per socket, for an aggregate system bandwidth of 920 GB/s.

Enterprise System

While capacity and performance are obvious, why is the E950 called an “enterprise system?” The answer lies in the reliability characteristics of the E950, which is led by redundant voltage regulators and redundant hot swap power supplies. Add to this an optional mirrored hypervisor, along with a combined list of 27 additional RAS factors, and you have the leading contender for a mid-range enterprise class server.

Hardware and Software Support

To round out the industry-leading hardware features, the E950 comes with 3-year 7x24 support, has 5000 Power Reward Points, and is in the small software tier. The software support is with AIX 6.1, AIX 7.1 and AIX 7.2, at the latest TL levels. Note that IBM i is not supported.

Linux Enablement and Provisioning

Linux enablement is from the certified POWER9 Linux distributions including RedHat 7.5, SLES 12 and 15, and Ubuntu 18.0.4. There are also reduced-cost processor core activations for Linux and VIOS, as well as a memory bundle which replaces the POWER8 IFLs.

PowerVM, PowerVC and IBM Cloud Private

PowerVM Enterprise Edition is included in all E950 configurations, at no additional charge, but requires IBM SWMA fees. And, to provide cloud-like management for automated provisioning, PowerVC and IBM Cloud Private reduce administration time, and can provide end-user-initiated provisioning, with policy and authorization approval.

Contact Mainline

The IBM Power Systems E950 is an incredible mission-critical, highly-partitioned data center system to support critical workloads. Contact your Mainline Account Executive for an architectural design of a system to meet your needs or click here to contact us with any questions.

For more details on the IBM Power Systems E950, join us for this webcast:

IBM POWER9 Enterprise-Class Server Announcement

Wednesday, August 8th
12:00PM ET – 1:00PM ET

Register Now!

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