IBM Reveals World's Fastest Microprocessor: z196

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demn

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z196
The mainframe cores are based on the z196 chip, a 5.2 GHz quad-core out-of-order CISC-based z/Architecture processor. They are the highest clock speed microprocessors available at the introduction date and, at least at introduction, the fastest CPUs in the world.[1] These cores can run a variety of operating systems in any combination, including z/OS, z/VM, Linux on System z, z/VSE, and z/TPF.
A z196 node is a two rack system; the "A frame" consisting of the Central Processing Complex, cooling, none or one I/O drawer or up to two drawers and power supply and the "Z frame" with two system Support Elements and up to four I/O drawers or up to two I/O cages.
Comes in five models, named after the number of processors: M15, M32, M49, M66 and M80.
Up to 96 cores segmented to up to 80 processor units, up to 14 system assist cores and 2 spares.
Up to 3 TB of RAIM (Redundant Array of Independent Memory), i.e 3.75 TB of RAM where 750 GB is used for parity redundancy. This function allows the system to recover from entire memory channel failures in addition to chipkills.
Nodes can be either water or air cooled.
Compatible with the previous z9 EC and z10 EC mainframes providing a clear upgrade path.
(c) Wikipedia
 
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I'd ask "but can it play Crysis," but the answer is obvious. In fact, it can probably orchestrate an actual alien invasion of Earth. Does this kind of tech actually reach later consumer processors, or is this just an extreme of current tech that will be expected to be superseded by the time consumer computing demands reach this level? Or is this entirely the wrong question?
 

ikefu

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1) Horrible for Crysis
2) Great if you're trying to create a simulation of the entire universe
3) Still not powerful enough to figure out what the hell the Microsoft Jerry Seinfeld TV ads were trying to sell
 

mikem_90

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[citation][nom]cekasone[/nom]I've seen an AMD and Intel chips over clocked to 5GHz and beyond. You aren't so special Mr. z196[/citation]

Something tells me, the massive parallel architecture based in this chip is meant to do things your 980x can only dream of. AMD proved clock speed doesn't matter around 5+ years ago. Where were you?

Its not how fast you spin your wheels, its how much power you put to the road.
 
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I had to do a small amount of mainframe administration as part of a previous job, I cannot understand why it's still used, the only thing it has going for it is that it's so counter-intuitive and confusing, that no hacker would bother spending the time to figure out how to use it.

Don't get me wrong, Windows, at the API and administration level, is a bit stupid and half-baked, but atleast it kind of makes sense(aside from being stupid and ill-conceived). If any Windows fanboys think I'm making that up, go learn VBScript.
 

wotan31

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[citation][nom]phatboe[/nom]What exactly are these Z-Series mainframes used for and what OS is it running?[/citation]
We have several of these (previous generation, not the yet-unreleased one of course) at work. They basically run our entire company. eCommerce web site, manufacturing floor, accounts payable, human resources, you name it. Everything our company does. Each within their own separate virtual address space. These are capable of running z/OS, Linux on zSeries, z/VM, z/VSE, z/TPF, and MUSIC/SP operating systems. We run Z/OS on ours. As much as the Microsoft fanboi's will claim otherwise, the world most definitely does NOT run on x86 and Windows. Mainframes are very much alive still today, but they're only used where nearly-100% uptime is required. The last time we rebooted our IBM mainframe was in 2006.
 

wotan31

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Oh, and I should add that these most definitely reach well into the Seven figure price range. But it's justified, since they have features that no other computers have. You can partition this machine into smaller machines, each running their own OS instance. Right about now, you're thinking "so what, I can do that with VMware". Well, no you cant - the zSeries does full hardware and power isolation on these partitions. So I can power down one partition, swap CPU's and memory, swap the back plane, etc. without affecting the other partitions I have set up. Full electrical isolation. Also, you can allocate and remove memory, CPU's, and even PCIe busses to/from a running partition! The OS is smart enough that you can tell it Ok, here's 8 more CPU cores, start using them. No reboot required. And you can later take those cores away and give them to another OS running in another partition. Same with RAM, same with I/O busses. The only other machines that even come close, are the HP Superdome, and the Tandem Himalaya. Those two also have 7 figure price tags.
 

palladin9479

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Nice a bit too expensive for business's but useful for universities. You can probably get more bang~buck ration installing a rack or two of Sun 5440's with Solaris 10.

This thing would be useful for calculating the density of a start with respect to its gravitational effect on local planets.... or maybe just a 3D PIC simulation of a stars fusion reactions. The kind of math it would take a desktop PC a few years to figure out.
 

drhenks

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[citation][nom]cekasone[/nom]I've seen an AMD and Intel chips over clocked to 5GHz and beyond. You aren't so special Mr. z196[/citation]

I used to dunk all the time on my plastic basket ball hoop. You're not so special LeBron James.
 
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