In the four years since the announcement of POWER9 in 2017 the world has changed considerably. In September 2021 we saw the launch of Power10. Note, this is Power10 (upper and lower case letters with no spaces), and not POWER10, POWER 10 or Power 10! In fact, the new branding also extends to the server family which is now IBM® Power® and the architecture Power®. To accompany the launch there was a powerful ‘The Power of 10’ fanfare which can be viewed again here
Power10 also has a neat new logo.
But what is Power10, and who is it aimed at? Firstly, only top-end hardware was announced, with this being in the form of the IBM Power E1080 with three different processor feature variations in EDP2, EDP3 and EDP4, the later of which offers a staggering 5266000 CPW with the 4 X 60 core option. These E1080 boxes are really aimed at the top-end enterprise client that are or will soon to be knocking on the performance ceiling of their POWER9 servers. Normally such increases in performance have an impact on energy consumption, but IBM report that there is no such increase with Power10, with it being equally as green as its predecessor. Scale-out Power10 servers used by the bulk of the user community will follow at a later date. To use Power10 you will need to be running at least IBM i V7R3, AIX 7.1, Red Hat Enterprise 8.2 or SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12.
There’s not a day goes by seemingly without a major security breach being reported in the press. Couple this with the fact that many businesses are looking to the cloud for their DR/HA its welcome news that with Power10 IBM promise to protect data from core to cloud helped by way of transparent memory encryption which is delivered without any overhead on workloads. The great thing with this feature is that unlike many security initiatives there is no setup whatsoever as it’s delivered in the hardware.
Since the early days the Power platform has always been considered as rock-solid in terms of reliability and over-achieves the five nines industry benchmark as documented in a recent ITIC 2020 Global Server Hardware, Server OS Reliability Report which can be viewed here. Power10 takes this a step further with in-built improved self-monitoring and self-healing – another huge plus for IBM i shops that have the server as a cornerstone of their business.
IBM announcements are always met by the user community with great excitement and this one is no exception. As well as providing a welcome boost to those looking to upgrade their POWER8 or POWER9 hardware, this in turn revitalizes the second user market often providing viable upgrade paths for older POWER6 and POWER7 variations.
This article is written by Ash Giddings, Product Manager at Maxava