IBM Systems Magazine, Power Systems - March 2018 - 17
analysis and put it into a form
their geologists can interpret.
Earth Signal competes on price
and response time, which means
squeezing the most compute
power out of the smallest possible
footprint. The company's x86
systems were out of capacity and
the data center lacked room to add
more hardware, and the client had
no desire to build a new one.
Attracted by the number of
cores and threads per POWER8
processor, Earth Signal did a
benchmark and found that
one POWER8 processor could
outperform multiple x86-based
Xeon processors. Another
benchmark showed that a 2U
POWER8 system could complete
in 60 hours a job that took a 21U
Xeon system 100 hours.
And because of the x86 clusters,
Earth Signal had to copy all of its
data to each node, taking up nine
hours and then another nine hours
to copy it back. The POWER8
systems have enough threads
in each node to run these jobs
immediately. This was a savings of
18 hours, which, for some deals,
could be the difference between
winning and losing.
Making the Choice
IBM has hundreds of case studies
just like the aforementioned
examples, which demonstrate the
advantages of the Power Systems
platform over x86.
The experiences of LiveMon,
Earth Signal and others convey
a few important lessons. First,
think very hard before you replace
a perfectly good Power Systems
server that has been running
without performance, reliability or
scalability issues, especially when
the replacement is an x86-based
solution that you think will cost
less and be easier to manage.
POWER servers offer these benefits
over x86: increased performance,
decreased server footprint and
Open-source databases and SAP HANA on the
Power Systems platform are fitting examples of why
having a choice is important. The IBM POWER platform
is an efficient and cost-effective alternative for these
mission-critical business applications. Moreover, Linux
on Power Systems is as open as any x86 solution on the
market today. Openness (or a perceived lack thereof) is
not a valid reason for choosing x86 over POWER.
Infrastructure really does
matter. If you don't take into
consideration your application
and workload characteristics
and map these to the right
architecture, your infrastructure
will ultimately increase your
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ibmsystemsmag.com MARCH 2018 // 17