New CoolThreads servers for IBM WebSphere
By sunabl on Oct 10, 2007
Yesterday, Sun introduced the second generation of CoolThreads servers (Sun SPARC Enterprise T5120 and T5220) and blades (Sun Blade T6320 server module) powered by the UltraSPARC T2 (US-T2) processor. This is an awesome chip with up to 8 core 8 threads (i.e. 64 parallel thread execution). Yes, it's a single CPU. If you run the command "psrinfo" in Solaris, it will report 64 "processors" on an 8 core US-T2 system. Note that these servers can be configured with a US-T2 processor having 4, 6, or 8 Core 1.2GHz or 8 Core 1.4GHz. Many of the Sun engineers have blog entries on this Chip Multithreading Technology (CMT), products, and performance characteristics.
So, what does this new Sun product launch mean to you folks who are running IBM WebSphere?
- Great performance improvement with US-T2 (64 threads, FPU, Onboad 10Gig-E, SSL Acceleration, etc.)
- Less power/cooling requirements than IBM p-Series, Intel Itanium/Xeon, etc.
- Excellent Price/Performance based on IBM WebSphere licensing and US-T2 throughput (not to mention space, power, and cooling)
- Built-in virtualization (Solaris Containers, Logical Domains, and up coming Sun xVM)
I have worked with many of the Sun and IBM (WebSphere) largest customers globally and within the past two years, we saw the tremendous growth of adoption of T2000 systems for WebSphere deployment. They like the T2000 for all the benefits Sun has to offer such as performance, Solaris 10, data center consolidation with built-in virtualization, SWaP and green computing benefits. Now, the second generation systems, like T5x20, offer the same benefits as well as being able to about double the performance of WebSphere Application Server v6.1 (see my colleague Dileep Kumar's blog entry) in comparison to our old WAS benchmark on T2000. In addition, IBM WebSphere licensing on US-T2 remains very attractive, at 50 PVU's per core, in comparison to other processors (see my previous blog entry).
To summarize, if you wish to have the competitive edge (an optimal WebSphere deployment platform that enables you to maximize resource utilization, improve performance and operation efficiency, and reduce cost (WebSphere licensing, space/power/cooling)), you have to look into the UltraSPARC T2 based servers now.