Ubuntu Linux server with ARM processor rolled out by Boston Limited

The Viridis Microserver will run on ARM Cortex-A15 processors and is certified to run Ubuntu Linux 13.10

Boston Limited has announced a new server based on ARM processors and certified to run Ubuntu Linux 13.10, a move that could further stir up growing interest in ARM servers.

When it ships, the Viridis Microserver will be one of the few commercially available ARM servers. Top server makers like Hewlett-Packard and Dell have announced their intent to release ARM servers, but only a handful of products from small vendors are commercially available.

Other ARM server makers include Penguin Computing and Aeon Computing. Advanced Micro Devices is expected to start selling ARM servers in next year's first quarter.

Boston Limited did not respond to requests for comment on price or worldwide availability of Viridis Microserver.

There is a growing interest in ARM servers as low-power alternatives to x86 servers, which dominate the data center. Some believe that low-power ARM cores are more power-efficient in processing search, social networking and other Web requests.

ARM server adoption is expected to grow with the released of 64-bit ARM chips next year from companies like AMD, Calxeda, AppliedMicro and others. Right now ARM-based servers support 32-bit addressing.

The Viridis Microserver design is centered around Calxeda's EnergyCore ECX-2000 system-on-chip (SOC), which was released late last month and has CPUs based on ARM's Cortex-A15 design. The microserver has six ECX-2000 SOCs, each of which draws just six watts of power, has four CPU cores running at 1.8GHz, 10 Gigabit Ethernet links, 16GB of DDR3 memory and 4MB of cache.

With certification to run Ubuntu Linux, the Viridis Microserver will have the drivers to support the Calxeda chip. Software development for the ARM architecture is still in its infancy, with software packages being developed by Linaro, and Oracle and ARM working to tweak the Java programming language for ARM's 32-bit and upcoming 64-bit chips.

The natural applications for the Viridis Microserver server would be for Web hosting, or for someone who wants an ARM server to test applications, said Dean McCarron, principal analyst at Mercury Research.

"We haven't seen the exact market for these products emerge yet," McCarron said. "It's early to say where it'll fit."

The ultra-low power server market is still very small, and ARM-based servers will start in the 2U form factor and work their way up, McCarron said.

The Viridis Microserver was announced at the Supercomputing Conference being held in Denver this week.

Agam Shah covers PCs, tablets, servers, chips and semiconductors for IDG News Service. Follow Agam on Twitter at @agamsh. Agam's e-mail address is agam_shah@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags servershardware systemsArm HoldingsBoston Limited

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Agam Shah

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?