Tyan launches an OpenPower Power 8 reference design

Now you can actually buy a Power 8 system for sane dollars

Tyan logoIf you have been waiting for a reasonably priced Power 8 system, it looks like Tyan has the perfect holiday gift for you. The new OpenPower Reference System is now available for order.

The new OpenPower box is called the GN70-BP010 for all the obvious reasons, not that SemiAccurate has a clue what they are though. If you are looking at the box it seems to be a very standard 2U rack mount device with eight 3.5″ drives using the standard Tyan hot plug bays. Even the CD and ports are exactly what you would expect.

Tyan Power 8 reference system

It looks just like every other Tyan 2U server from this angle

Inside there is a single Power 8 CPU, specifically the Turismo SCM CPU. Unfortunately Tyan didn’t provide any details about that CPU but we have asked them for more color. There are four DDR3 slots that support up to 1333MHz registered/ECC memory, one PCIe3 16x lane and one 8x lane as well. Oddly there are only four SATA6 ports on the board so we can’t say for sure how they wire all of those eight hot plug 3.5″ bays. There are also two GbE ports from the Marvell 88DSE9235 controller and probably one more from the ASpeed AST2400 management chip. Unfortunately that part has a “(Currently No-Function)” note after it, something we would bet on being a driver issue.

The biggest news is not the reference design, that was shown off months ago. Why we mention it now is that you can actually order one to reference with for only $2753 if you buy between today and December 31. For that you get not only the reference system but the board it comes with, four 4GB DIMMs, a passive heatsink, and a 500GB HD. For that price how can you refuse? Most interestingly Tyan is promoting Ubuntu for the Power 8, something you can grab here for a mere $2753 less than the reference system.

So if you have been pining away for a Power 8 server to use for some reason we can’t quite fathom, today is your lucky day. You can now buy a Tyan OpenPower reference system and in short order do whatever you want with it. While the price is pretty steep for a 1S machine with 16GB of memory an a 500GB HD, it is absurdly low for a Power based machine. The big news about the GN70-BP010 is that it makes Power 8 systems downright affordable, by some definitions of affordable. Buy at least seven and get no discount but you will have seven things your friends don’t and you can’t put a price on that.S|A

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Charlie Demerjian

Roving engine of chaos and snide remarks at SemiAccurate
Charlie Demerjian is the founder of Stone Arch Networking Services and SemiAccurate.com. SemiAccurate.com is a technology news site; addressing hardware design, software selection, customization, securing and maintenance, with over one million views per month. He is a technologist and analyst specializing in semiconductors, system and network architecture. As head writer of SemiAccurate.com, he regularly advises writers, analysts, and industry executives on technical matters and long lead industry trends. Charlie is also a council member with Gerson Lehman Group. FullyAccurate