AMD demonstrates second generation Opteron X-Series – APU runs on Linux based Fedora
At the Red Hat Summit today, AMD’s server group made the first public demonstration of its second generation AMD Opteron X-Series APU codenamed ‘Berlin’. The APU runs on a Linux environment, based on the Fedora Project. The project was founded in 2003 as a result of a merger between Red Hat Linux and Fedora Linux projects and is a community driven Linux distribution. It aims to provide a familiar enterprise class operating environment to developers. It is an important development for developers looking to migrate to x86 APU servers but unwilling to introduce new tools and software platforms into IT environments, according to AMD.
Demo showcases the world’s first HSA (Heterogeneous System Architecture ) featured server APU.
This demo of Berlin is the first showcase in the world of Heterogeneous System Architecture, the Opteron X-Series. HSA aims towards blending scalar processing on the CPU, parallel processing on the GPU and optimized performance on the DSP. Through this, it intends to expose the capabilities of mainstream programmable computing elements. The demo also highlighted a variety of new advancements including Project ‘Sumatra’ which allows Java applications to take advantage of GPUs present inside the APUs. This combination of Linux and Java based on ‘Berlin’ creates a variety of possibilities. It creates a more optimized server platform for multimedia based workloads according to AMD. It will also help drive new levels of workload efficiency on data in data centers according to the company.
“As servers adapt to new and evolving workloads, it’s critical that the software ecosystem support the requirements of these new workloads,” Suresh Gopalakrishnan, corporate vice president and general manager of the Server Business Unit, AMD said yesterday at the demonstration. “We are actively engaged with a broad set of partners in the data center software community who are bringing to market the software infrastructure to seamlessly enable x86 APU based servers.” In addition to Fedora and HSA, softwares based on Open-CL parallel programming open standard and OpenGL cross-language, multi-platform application programming interface (API) for rendering 2D and 3D vector graphics on the “Berlin” APUs are also expected to be demonstrated at the summit.
We already know about Berlin APU which is based on the same foundation as AMD’s upcoming Kaveri APUs. Just like its consumer variant, Berlin APU would feature four x86 Steamroller cores and from the slide, it is revealed that AMD’s R7 series IGP is based on the Sea Islands architecture which is fused inside the Radeon HD 7790 and codenamed Bonaire XTX. That’s one chip of several variants which will be fused inside the Kaveri APUs offering Dual graphics support along side the Oland SKUs.
|AMD Trinity APU||AMD Richland APU||AMD Kaveri APU||AMD Berlin APU||AMD Carrizo APU||AMD Toronto APU|
|Core Architecture||x86 Piledriver||x86 Piledriver||x86 Steamroller||x86 Steamroller||x86 Excavator||x86 Excavator|
|GPU Architecture||VLIW4||VLIW4||Sea Islands||Sea Islands||Volcanic Islands||Volcanic Islands|
|GPU Branding||Radeon HD 7000||Radeon HD 8000||Radeon R7 Series||Radeon R7 Series||Radeon R9 Series?||Radeon R9 Series?|
|Memory / HSA Support||DDR3 / No||DDR3 / No||DDR3 / Yes||DDR3 / Yes||DDR3 / DDR4 / Yes||DDR3 / DDR4 / Yes|
|Launch||October 2012||June 2013||January 2014||2014||2015||2015|