AMD develops custom server microprocessor for Facebook – source
March 17th, 2015 at 3:04 pm - Author Anton Shilov
Advanced Micro Devices is working on a server-class system-on-chip (SoC) for Facebook. While not a lot of details are known about the microprocessor today, if Facebook adopts the chip for its datacentres, it will be a major revenue opportunity for AMD.
As Facebook’s infrastructure has scaled, the company ran into situation when it needed custom hardware to meet the needs of its vast datacentres. In a bid to develop such hardware, Facebook established Open Compute Project (OCP) and teamed up with numerous industry leaders in hardware design. The OCP develops various components, but so far the industry group has not really created any final specification of a complete server platform.
While elements of the OCP are used by Facebook and other participants to build new datacentres, in many cases hyper-scale datacentres continue to use a lot of custom tailor-made hardware, which includes microprocessors. It is not a secret that companies like Facebook, Amazon Web Services and other buy optimized versions of chips from Intel and AMD. However, it is also known that both chipmakers are designing full-custom central processing units (CPUs) for large clients. Apparently, this is exactly what AMD is doing for Facebook.
amd opteron chips1 1024x415 AMD develops custom server microprocessor for Facebook source
According to a source with knowledge of the project, AMD is developing a custom Opteron server processor for Facebook. Few details are known about the chip today. What is known is that it is based on 64-bit ARMv8-A architecture and is designed by AMD’s Enterprise Embedded and Semi-Custom (EESC) business group.
It is still a mystery whether the ARM-based system-on-chip is powered by AMD’s own K12 high-performance core due in 2016 or ARM’s off-the-shelf Cortex-A57 or A72 cores. However, keeping in mind that this is going to be a full-custom CPU, expect it