Wired has a post on why Google will embrace cell phone chips (aka ARM).
I've blogged on the concept of little green servers built on Atom and ARM, but what if ARM isn't more efficient than an x86 server? Here are some thoughts that are running through my mind.
- ARM is built on RISC which is more efficient
- The ARM architecture describes a family of RISC-based computer processors designed and licensed by British company ARM Holdings.
- Intel has not stood still and its processors are focused on efficiency and they have embraced the micro server category with the Intel Atom
- And focuses a lot on migrating users from RISC to Intel. http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/risc-migration/server-migration-transition-to-intel-based-solutions.html
- Which would make you think Intel has focused on how it can outperform RISC when there is heavy IT loads.
- Part of the ARM energy savings for mobile is the ability to shut down energy consumption during idle times. But, if you have a highly utilized server with many VMs on it, when is the idle time?
- IBM has shipped RISC server chips for years and it works for IBM well enough that there are no rumors of them to switch to ARM.
- The POWER7 superscalar symmetric multiprocessor architecture was a substantial evolution from the POWER6 design, focusing more on power efficiency through multiple cores and simultaneous multithreading (SMT). The POWER6 architecture was built from the ground up for frequencies, at the cost of power efficiency and achieved a remarkable 5 GHz.
- HP had PA-RISC. Sun/Oracle has SPARC.